We noticed that you're using an unsupported browser. The TripAdvisor website may not display properly.We support the following browsers:
Windows: Internet Explorer, Mozilla Firefox, Google Chrome. Mac: Safari.

“Island Tour”
Review of Robben Island

Robben Island
Book In Advance
More Info
and up
Full-Day Robben Island and Cape Town City Tour
More Info
and up
Full-Day Walk to Freedom Tour in Cape Town Including Robben Island
More Info
and up
Robben Island and Cape Town City Private Tour
Certificate of Excellence
More attraction details
Attraction details
Fee: Yes
Recommended length of visit: More than 3 hours
Owner description: During the apartheid years Robben Island served as a prison for political activists.
Level 2 Contributor
8 reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 6 helpful votes
“Island Tour”
Reviewed July 15, 2014 via mobile

Had a group of 55 US students for a memorable experience. As we all know the Robben island ferry is out of service and being outsourced. And that's we problem starts . The staff on this ferries have staff tip boxes on counters. And also when you exit the boat they stand their shamelessly soliciting tips from guests which I think is disgusting. I think Island management owe it to sub hired companies that this is unethical to do this practise.Other than that great experience.

Thank 880faizelw
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Write a Review

5,873 reviews from our community

Visitor rating
Date | Rating
  • Arabic first
  • Danish first
  • Dutch first
  • English first
  • Finnish first
  • French first
  • German first
  • Hebrew first
  • Italian first
  • Japanese first
  • Korean first
  • Norwegian first
  • Polish first
  • Portuguese first
  • Russian first
  • Spanish first
  • Swedish first
  • Thai first
  • Turkish first
  • Any
English first
White Rock, Canada
Level 6 Contributor
286 reviews
136 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 81 helpful votes
“I was on the fence - so glad I went!”
Reviewed July 13, 2014

Take motion tablets if you are concerned about the ferry crossing - some days calm - other days not and other days cancelled due to weather. Book in advance if you can as the trip is often sold out. My day was a calm crossing. I would have preferred more time on the island. Seemed we were a bit rushed to do the bus tour then the walking piece with an ex prisoner. I would like to have had time to walk on my own - it is a large complex. They are talking of expanding to offer overnight accommodation - currently only day trips - weather permitting. The highlight was certainly the walking portion with the ex political prisoner who spoke of his time on the island as an inmate, his release, his healing and his return to Robben Island to lead tours. Tour gives a better sense of how Mandela spent his many years of incarceration.

Visited May 2014
Thank cdb15427
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Katikati, New Zealand
Level 5 Contributor
49 reviews
11 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 21 helpful votes
“Great Trip to Ropbben Island”
Reviewed July 13, 2014

Our tour group coming from New Zealand were not sure whether we would find Robben Island interesting, but we were very glad to have gone there. It was a beautiful days, so we enjoyed the boat trip. On the island we first had a bus tour, with a very informative guide. Then we were shown around the prison by a man who had been sent there as a 20 year old in 1984 and not released until 1991. He was excellent, giving us a lot of interesting historical information and showing no bitterness.

Visited June 2014
1 Thank Alan G
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Level 3 Contributor
10 reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 4 helpful votes
“Well worth a visit”
Reviewed July 13, 2014

Nice boat trip out can be rough at times apparently but was fine when I did it some fairly big waves on way back but the boats big and handled them fine.

The island itself is remarkable beautiful considering its history. Saw some of the little penguins which was great. The guides are great and really convey the reality of the island as a prison and brig the prisoners experience to life. The one who did the building a tour had actually been an inmate himself. Just fascinating if sad at times to realise how cruel man can be to his fellow man but it reminds us to be mindful of the dangers of intolerance.

Visited September 2013
Thank Barry088
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Level 6 Contributor
106 reviews
49 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 106 helpful votes
“A Sad Story and Place”
Reviewed July 10, 2014

Robben Island told a very sad story. Many men of South Africa, mainly from Capetown suffered
unnecessarily in this horrible prison. Of course, the tour director made it seem much better than
it actually was but those of us who can "hear and read between the lines" know how badly those
prisoners lived. Yet, there were some very smart ones including the man who hooked up the
T-V to the toilet system as the lights were turned off at ten p.m. but with this hook-up they could watch T-V much later into the night. One smart electrician! Many other interesting aspects of this tour which I highly recommend.

Visited April 2014
Thank travelskip
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

Travelers who viewed Robben Island also viewed

Cape Town Central, Cape Town
Cape Town Central, Cape Town

Been to Robben Island? Share your experiences!

Write a Review Add Photos & Videos

Owners: What's your side of the story?

Own or manage this property? Claim your listing for free to respond to reviews, update your profile and much more.

Claim Your Listing