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Heart of Cape Town Museum (Republic of South Africa)

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Heart of Cape Town Museum, {CATEGORY}

The site of the world's first heart transplant, performed on December 3, 1967, by a dashing surgeon named Christiaan Barnard, has recently been transformed into one of the country's most compelling specialist museums, and a fascinating 2-hour experience. Although there's a distinctly clinical ambience in the museum "galleries" (it is, after all, a hospital building - now part of UCT's medical school), there's a lot of heart in the way the story of the operation unfolds, with sharp focus on the various players - including the unfortunate female car accident victim who became the world's first heart donor. There's an excellent documentary on Barnard himself, and the highlight is when you enter the pair of side-by-side operating theaters where the startling procedure took place. Latex sculptures produced by film industry specialists simulate all the characters who were present, and the excitement of the operation comes to life through a gripping account by a very knowledgeable guide. A hugely inspiring museum, although not for younger kids.

Practical Information

Address: Groote Schuur Hospital, Main Rd, Le Cap 7925

City: Cape Town

Country: South Africa

Phone 1: +27 21 404-1967

Official site: www.heartofcapetown.co.za

Opening hours: Daily 8am-7pm. visits by guided tour only, at 9 and 11am, and 1, 3, and 5pm

Entrance fee: R200 adults

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Heart of Cape Town Museum, {CATEGORY}

The site of the world's first heart transplant, performed on December 3, 1967, by a dashing surgeon named Christiaan Barnard, has recently been transformed into one of the country's most compelling specialist museums, and a fascinating 2-hour experience. Although there's a distinctly clinical ambience in the museum "galleries" (it is, after all, a hospital building - now part of UCT's medical school), there's a lot of heart in the way the story of the operation unfolds, with sharp focus on the various players - including the unfortunate female car accident victim who became the world's first heart donor. There's an excellent documentary on Barnard himself, and the highlight is when you enter the pair of side-by-side operating theaters where the startling procedure took place. Latex sculptures produced by film industry specialists simulate all the characters who were present, and the excitement of the operation comes to life through a gripping account by a very knowledgeable guide. A hugely inspiring museum, although not for younger kids.

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