We are open Tues to Sun from 9h00 to 17h00.

Admission Fee

(Price increases below are applicable from 1 May 2014)

Adults: R70.00
Pensioners, students and children: R55.00
Learners: R25.00
Teachers: R30.00






“Mr Mandela gave 67 years of his life fighting for the rights of humanity. All we are asking is that everyone gives 67 minutes of their time, whether it’s supporting your chosen charity or serving your local community.” Nelson Mandela Centre of Memory at the Nelson Mandela Foundation"


On Mandela Day in Cape Town on 18 July 2010, American actor Morgan Freeman – who played Mandela in the film Invictus – displays his handprint on a piece of cloth that was attached to many others and sold for charity.

South Africa’s Yvonne Chaka Chaka performs during the Mandela Day 46664 Concert at Radio City Music Hall on 18 July 2009 in New York City.

Children at the Bethany Home – Place of Safety in Mthatha, South Africa (near to Mr Mandela’s birthplace) sing Happy Birthday to Nelson Mandela on his 94th birthday, 18 July 2012.


Four years after Nelson Mandela finally ‘retired from retirement’, he called on future generations to do their bit to change the world. “It’s in your hands”, was his message. His slogan emphasised the empowering value of agency and interaction for a functioning democracy. The South African people had sacrificed and organised during the years of the struggle for liberation; now, their dignity restored, they needed to join hands to tackle the challenges that still remained.

He first gave this message at a concert to celebrate his 90th birthday in 2008. International artists and musicians laid on a huge, exhilarating birthday concert in London’s Hyde Park, which Mandela attended. Picking up on his message, the Nelson Mandela Foundation decided “to celebrate Mr Mandela’s birthday each year with a day dedicated to his life’s work … to ensure his legacy continues forever”.

The concept caught the world’s imagination. In 2009 the United Nations unanimously adopted Nelson Mandela International Day “as a catalyst for each and every person to realise that they have the ability to change the world through action”. In 2012, the Tour de France, celebrated 18 July as part of an international cycling event, beginning in Liège, Belgium, taking in Switzerland and finishing on the Champs-Élysées in Paris.

A move is now afoot in South Afica to declare 18 July a public holiday. But the day is not just a once-off event. It is an on-going commitment “from the United Nations Secretary-General to citizens everywhere to make the world a better place, one day at a time, every day”. Former Minister of Arts and Culture, Mr Paul Mashatile, sees the day as “an opportunity to promote social cohesion, national healing and nation building”. He has urged people to “become agents of a caring society … helping others, especially the poor”.

The interactive Mandela Day website gives further opportunities for people to share their ideas and activities, both globally and locally. http://www.mandeladay.com/static/about-mandela-day



Squaring the Circle: The Politics of Art

National Arts Festival 2014, Grahamstown
3-13 July, 2014



Squaring the Circle, an exhibition curated by the Apartheid Museum, is set against the backdrop of the
National Arts Festival that celebrates its 40th anniversary this year. Dotted around the city of Grahamstown,
the exhibition initiates a journey that chronicles arts and culture over four decades. It shows how freedom
of expression and creativity have intersected with the changing legal and political framework that underpins
South African society. To read more, click here








Tribute to Nelson Mandela  1918 - 2013


Nelson Mandela, the father of the nation affectionately known as Madiba, has gone to rest. He has left the world a legacy which will endure and inspire future generations in the knowledge that their freedom is owed to him and others in their struggle to overcome discrimination and prejudice.


His gift and message is not only pertinent to those who suffered under the draconian apartheid concept of segregation and second class status for black South Africans, but to the millions who find themselves in similar circumstances today in other parts of the world. It is Nelson Mandela's message of negotiation and reconciliation - in moving beyond the yoke of servitude and conflict to a position of building a new nation based on the principles of equality, non-racism, non-sexism and equal opportunity - that finds resonance in the hearts and minds of the international community and the world at large.


Mandela regarded the 27 years he had to endure in prison as small measure for the reward of the freedom of his people - both friend and foe alike - who make up the citizens of South Africa and by extension the citizenry of the world. The principle of reconciliation he held up as his mantra endeared him to all, including his former jailers. And then came the first democratic elections, standing in line for hours in 1994 to vote, the majority for the first time, in excitement and incredulity, experiencing the previously unimaginable. Freedom!


This great man would no doubt see the outpouring of admiration and gratitude, tinged with sorrow, spontaneously being articulated from every corner of the planet, as a collective salute to the millions who endured the excesses of an inhumane and brutal system which was overcome with courage and sacrifice. He would no doubt downplay his own role in this struggle for dignity and emancipation. 


The acknowledgment of being awarded the Noble Peace Prize and the United Nations honouring his birthday on the 18 July every year as International Nelson Mandela Day, ensures that this humility, extraordinary leadership and pinnacle of human achievement is rightly recognised as we honour and remember him and share in his legacy as a beloved citizen of the world.


You will be with us always! Hamba kahle, tata! Go well father!  


Christopher Till


Apartheid Museum




Mandela has been central to every stage of South Africa’s epic struggle against apartheid – from formulating a new approach in the 1940s to leading the mass struggles of the 1950s, from the formation of Umkhonto we Siswe in the early 1960s to imprisonment for 27 years. He initiated and led negotiations in the 1990s, and served as the first President of a democratic South Africa. He built a new nation from the fragments of conflict.

(click to download/view pdf's)



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Our Triumphs and Our Tears: Online Exhibition
Women’s struggles in 20th century South Africa
An exhibition commemorating the 50th anniversary of the Women’s March









"I remember the first man to the moon, when he set his foot on the moon, he said this is a little step forward for mankind. I ask myself, is my child and grandchildren mankind?"
- Lilian Ngoyi


(click to download/view pdf's)

Our Triumphs and Our Tears part 1 2,872 KB

Our Triumphs and Our Tears part2 2,863 KB



Click Below to read review about the Museum on the Trip Advisor site


  Apartheid Museum reviews