On this day, 11 February 1990, Nelson Mandela stepped out of prison into the hearts of South Africans. We can all recall this day and where we were, but did you know that Madiba spent his last 14 months of incarceration in Paarl?

Paarl Wine and Tourism and Drakenstein Municipality started with a Madiba Legacy project in 2018 to commemorate the late President Nelson Mandela’s 100th birthday. A photo gallery of ordinary residents of Paarl and Wellington with tata Madiba was launched at the KWV Cathedral Cellar, who also celebrated their centenary in 2018 and where Mr Mandela also attended a function sometime after his release.

The legacy project continued with the Madiba Prison House.

Madiba Prison House at Drakenstein Correctional Services (formally known as Victor Verster Prison) near Paarl, where Mr Nelson Mandela spent the last 14 months of his 27-year incarceration has not been open to the public. This is one of the most important places on Madiba’s journey to freedom. The last steps of Tata Madiba’s ‘long walk to freedom’ was out of the gates of this prison where the statue of Mr Mandela stands at the front.

Manfred Jacobs, a former employee of Drakenstein Correctional services, conducts tours of Madiba Prison House, by appointment. Bookings can be made at manfredajacobs@gmail.com or

+27 (0) 84 339 0593

To show the Madiba Journey to the world and hear the story of his first steps to freedom right here in Paarl, we have created a video to provide visitors with a bit of the Madiba magic. We invite visitors to come experience this big and significant event in history!

Here is a short glimpse of what you can expect when visiting:  https://youtu.be/rY_Ljgfw4iA