Robben Island

This is the small island just a few kms from the mainland of Cape Town, South Africa where Nelson Mandela was incarcerated for 18 years of his 27 year imprisonment. Aside from its notoriety as a prison, it has also been a leper colony, a lunatic asylum and a military base. It is now a UNESCO heritage site and a museum.
A view difficult to beat - here an old wartime photograph of the spread of Arum Lilies on Robben Island

A view difficult to beat - here an old wartime photograph of the spread of Arum Lilies on Robben Island

The island is dotted with remnants from when it was used as a military base during World War 2.

The island is dotted with remnants from when it was used as a military base during World War 2.

After a bus tour and the prison tour you are free to walk around alone, making your way back to the harbour for the ferry ride back to the mainland.

After a bus tour and the prison tour you are free to walk around alone, making your way back to the harbour for the ferry ride back to the mainland.

Nelson Mandela's cell. While he was there it was more 'furnished' with a small table to use as a desk, books, photos, and a simple bed etc.

Nelson Mandela's cell. While he was there it was more 'furnished' with a small table to use as a desk, books, photos, and a simple bed etc.

View of Nelson Mandela's cell - 4th from the left - from the courtyard.

View of Nelson Mandela's cell - 4th from the left - from the courtyard.

A giant aloe on Robben Island

A giant aloe on Robben Island

One of the dormitories shared by prisoners - not all of them had individual cells. At first, they had only thin mattresses but after a visit from the International Red Cross, they were issued beds.

One of the dormitories shared by prisoners - not all of them had individual cells. At first, they had only thin mattresses but after a visit from the International Red Cross, they were issued beds.

A censored letter - sometimes so much was cut out that there was nothing left to read - heartbreaking to receive.

A censored letter - sometimes so much was cut out that there was nothing left to read - heartbreaking to receive.

The limestone quarry when prisoners worked. The cave to the right was the only shelter from the sun, was also used as a toilet and for secret meetings during the working day.

The limestone quarry when prisoners worked. The cave to the right was the only shelter from the sun, was also used as a toilet and for secret meetings during the working day.

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