Aug 27, 2010


The title is related to Robben Island, a famous political prison near to Cape Town, South Africa. In fact, it was the first place that we visited when we were in Cape Town. It is also the place where Nelson Mandela and also many of the political prisoners were imprisoned during the apartheid era.

A slight history on Robben Island.

The name actually means seal island in Dutch and it is 15km away from Cape Town via boat. One needs to book in advance the ferry ticket as the tickets usually ran out quite fast. The uniqueness about the whole visit to Robben Island and the museum is that the guide is non other than the political prisoners themselves. The stories that they were telling us were sad and deep from the heart. We could feel his pain and sorrow even up to this day. He told us about how the government at that time do not allow them to read and write letters to their family fearing that they would leaked out the condition in the prison. They were using a torn mat as a chess board to entertain themselves. There were no papers and pen allowed. Food is rationed according to the skin colour. Later on, the prison in Robben Island was specifically for the blac prisoners.

Of course, there was the famous cell occupated by Mr Mandela himself. It was tiny, cold and eerie.

Initially we bought tickets for the 9am tour but we overslept and couldnt make it for the ferry. Then we used our 'beauty' and 'pity' face to beg the counter assistant to change our tickets to a later time and somehow eventhough people lining up at that time had to settle for the next 2 days ticket, we managed to change the tickets for the 1pm ferry which we gladly taken up. Although, the return ferry was seriously delayed, we managed the capture the one of the most beautiful sunset in Robben Island. With that, it was the perfect end for our trip to Robben Island.

Table mountain, lion's head, Green Point stadium & Signal Hill in one shot (taken while on ferry)

reaching Robben Island

view of table mountain from Robben Island

One of the cell for the prisoner's children. His children were allowed to visit him in prison and stayed here

the famous Mandela cell (left) and Adri in 'prison' (right)

inside the prison

our guide retelling his tales

walking back to the harbour

delayed ferry lead to capturing this amazing sunset

background view of Table Mountain


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