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The Heart of Cape Town Museum
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Private Tour: Cape of Good Hope Tour from Cape Town
Certificate of Excellence
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Recommended length of visit: 2-3 hours
Owner description: Experience the drama of the world’s first human heart transplant performed by Prof. Chris Barnard in 1967 in the fully restored operating theatres where the surgery took place. The fascinating and very emotional stories of the donor, recipient and medical team involved are told on a fully guided, 2 hour tour with the help of life sized silicone models and replicas of important scenes. Certainly an experience not to be missed!
Brisbane, Australia
Level Contributor
71 reviews
9 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 63 helpful votes
Reviewed December 9, 2012

It is more than two months since we visited this museum and I still find myself thinking of it often. To enter through what was the emergency entrance and stand in the actual operating theatres where it all happened (and set up as they were on the day) is an unforgettable experience, as is seeing the preserved recipient and in some cases donor hearts. The staff are knowledgable and passionate about the stories and bring it all to life while being immensely respectful of the sensitivities involved. I learnt so much.

They couldn't have been more helpful, arranging transfers from my hotel and collecting my husband from the university (and staying open a bit later for us so we could see it all - and there is a lot).

One of the best museums I've seen and the highlight of our visit to Cape Town. Don't miss it..

Visited September 2012
Thank SandyV1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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307 reviews from our community

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New York City
Level Contributor
129 reviews
68 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 118 helpful votes
“Heart Transplant in History”
Reviewed December 3, 2012

For those who remember the shock and excitement of the world's first heart transplant - and even for those who do not - this is good history. You do not need a medical background to understand and appreciate the guided tour at Groote Schuur Hospital. It's extremely informative. Pickup and return to your hotel is free for those who purchased a Hop-Off Hop-On ticket (else 50 rand). If you schedule this 2-hr tour right before you need to leave for the airport, they will even store your luggage during the tour and drive you to the airport free - more than saving the cost (200 rand) of the tour itself.

Visited November 2012
Thank ber357
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Sitiawan, Malaysia
Level Contributor
109 reviews
51 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 65 helpful votes
“Impressive museum on world's first heart transplant”
Reviewed November 19, 2012

Glad to visit this Heart museum on the historic heart transplant performed by the eminent pioneer Dr. Christian Barnard in 1967. He used the accident victim, Denise's heart to transplant into the recipient, Louis Wallansky. The exhibits were very detailed, informative and well laid out. It is certainly worth a visit.

Visited October 2012
Thank peterling1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Durban, South Africa
Level Contributor
38 reviews
15 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 30 helpful votes
“One of the BEST”
Reviewed November 5, 2012

I am the publisher of many Travel Guides and I therefore have to visit, research and photograph many attractions in and around SA.

I was totally impressed by The CHRIS BARNARD HEART MUSEUM in Cape Town South Africa.
Every little detail has been thought of and it feels as though you are actually part of the whole operation. The experience was totally unbelievable and will remain with me forever. Whatever you do, make sure you visit this museum when next in Cape Town, you won't be sorry.

Well done to the curator and founder of this remarkable property!

Visited October 2012
2 Thank Rene H
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
1 review
“Very interesting, informative and extremely realistic, definitely worth a visit”
Reviewed November 2, 2012

We have visited Cape Town on several occasions, and finally got round to visiting here inSeptember 2011.

It was a guided tour and we were only a small group of visitors about 6 of us, mainly medical professionals , we were not but able to follow and understand completely what was being explained. The actual operating theatres and the models in the beds were very lifelike and so realistic, you could almost see them breathing! The original photographs and the histories of the first patients to have this heart surgery was very interesting, as today we do not think of this as even unusual, but back then was truly amazing.

Thank DorothyRouse
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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