With so many tourist attractions around the world, who would have thought that you can visit prisons on your trip too? These historic buildings that once served as iconic prisons are now a popular tourist spot where you can indulge in the chapters from the past. These 5 most historic and gothic prisons are simply unmissable for their impeccable stories.
Alcatraz Island, California, USA
Serving the role of a prison from the years 1934 till 1963, this one is the most popular of all. Located in California in the USA, Alcatraz was the first maximum-security minimum privilege prison in the country. This means that it had the maximum amount of security any prison could have because it housed some of the most notorious criminals. The location was also secluded for the same reasons. This location on a rocky island was said to be inescapable and that was mandatory because of the criminals and prisoners that were caged in it. It is said that as many as 36 criminals have tried to escape this prison but many of them were caught or shot dead right away. Today, it is just a popular spot for tourists who take a boat tour to the island and inspect the prison. If you look at it from a distance, it really looks historic and spectacular.
Tower of London, UK
Serving as a prison from the 11th century to the mid-20th century, this one is also a famous prison. It was once home to the British Crown Jewels but today it is a mere tourist spot. Tower of London is truly considered to be a historic castle as it has seen many notorious prisoners. It has also gained popularity for a lot of other reasons. It has been called haunted and one of the most visited spots in London and the entire world. But this is not just in the air. There are reasons and stories for it and that’s what makes this tower a must-visit for all. You can take a tour of the prison with a guide and have a view of the cells as well as the spot where executions took place. This will be en experience to remember!
Chateau d’If, France
Located on a small island offshore from Marseille, this one was originally a fortress but became a prison in the 17th century. Chateau d’If prison has served as an iconic prison for all the possible religious and political prisoners. But the most important thing in this prison is that prisoners with wealth and fame always received better treatment than the low-class ones. Since this one is also located on an island, it is said to be inescapable. It was opened to the public in 1890 and since then, it has just been a popular tourist spot where ferries go from Marseille filled with tourists. You can visit this one with your family and have a tour of this world-famous prison.
Robben Island, South Africa
A small island on the shore of Cape Town, this one is truly an iconic one and also a must-visit for all the people around the world. Cape Town has always been a gorgeous destination but with this historic prison, it claims to have gothic vibes too. Robben Island is famed for housing the famous prisoner of all times- Nelson Mandela. He was prisoned in this place for about 18 years and this also makes it worth the visit. This island is a UNESCO World Heritage Site and thus, is a popular tourist destination too. Apart from the gothic walls of the prison, you will also spot a large African Penguin colony that is absolutely gorgeous. Take a ferry from Cape town and do not miss this incredible prison.
Devil’s Island, French Guiana
Serving as a prison for as many as 90 years, this one is truly one spectacular prison and a historic site in France. Around 80,000 prisoners have spent time therein all these 90 years which makes it one iconic prison. It was home to many political prisoners as well as notorious criminals. Just like some other prisons, this one was also considered inescapable as it was surrounded by piranha-infested rivers and the thick jungles of South America. This makes it beautiful but scary too. It became a popular tourist spot after 1952 and has been a great attraction ever since. Take boat tours and cruises with your family and do not miss out on visiting this one.