Robben Island’s notorious history extends to the 17th century when it was used to house political prisoners and the socially undesirables. However, by the turn of the 20th century, it had become a symbol of silent resistance and hope.
The oval-shaped island is situated in the Table Bay and can be accessed via ferry from the Nelson Mandela Gateway on the V & A Waterfront.
The most famous resident of Robben Island was the Nobel Laureate and former President of South Africa, Nelson Mandela, fondly known as Madiba, who spent 18 years of his life within the narrow walls of the prison here.
Thanks to Robben Island’s enduring symbolism of human grit and triumph over oppression and racism, the site is inscribed as a UNESCO World Heritage Site.