Dignitaries from around the world will gather in South Africa today to bid a final farewell to Nelson Mandela at his state funeral.
The Prince of Wales will join some 4,000 people expected to attend the service for South Africa's first black president, along with Mr Mandela's family members, African leaders and several heads of state.
It marks the end of a week of m emorial events for the anti-apartheid hero which have attracted thousands of South Africans and world leaders.
Charles is expected to arrive with the British High Commissioner Judith Macgregor at the service in Qunu, the remote village where the Mr Mandela grew up.
Prominent US civil rights activist Reverend Jessie Jackson is also thought to be attending.
The Prince is representing the Queen after Buckingham Palace confirmed that the 87-year-old monarch would not make the journey to South Africa for the ceremonies to mark Mr Mandela's death.
After the former statesman's death last week, Charles described Mr Mandela as the "embodiment of courage and reconciliation" and said his passing had left "an immense void" in the lives of everyone who had been affected by his fight for justice and freedom.
The South African and Union flags are being flown at half-mast above 10 Downing Street today to mark the ceremony.
Mr Mandela's body arrived in Qunu in the Eastern Cape region of South Africa yesterday as large numbers of people lined the roads to pay their respects as the cortege passed by.
His coffin, draped in the country's national flag, had earlier been carried from a farewell service in Pretoria and onto a military plane, escorted by two fighter jets.
Preparations for Mr Mandela's funeral have been marred by a public spat between the South African government and retired archbishop Desmond Tutu, one of the most prominent survivors in the long anti-apartheid struggle.
Mr Tutu, a Nobel laureate who has strongly criticised the current government, will attend after earlier saying he would not, despite wanting to pay respects to his long-time friend.
He had said he was not invited - an apparent snub that the South African government vehemently denies.
Mr Tutu, 82, said he had cancelled his plans to fly to the Eastern Cape to attend the funeral after receiving no indication that his name was on the guest list or accreditation list.
However, Mac Maharaj, a spokesman for the South African presidency, said Mr Tutu was on the guest list and he hoped a solution would be found that allowed Mr Tutu to attend.
Later, the retired archbishop's Desmond and Leah Tutu Legacy Foundation posted on social media: "Archbishop Emeritus Desmond Tutu will be travelling to Qunu early tomorrow to attend Tata's funeral."
At least 100,000 people saw Mr Mandela's body lying in state in Pretoria over three days this week, but some had to be turned away.
The 95-year-old former leader, who was imprisoned for 27 years for opposing apartheid before emerging in 1990 to forge a new democratic South Africa, died on December 5.