BODY WORLDS Vital exhibition

I have had the opportunity to see two different BODY WORLDS exhibitions, one in Las Vegas and one in London, and now there is the opportunity to see yet another one right here in the Mother City. I am finding it so hard to contain my excitement!

The exhibition – which is not for the faint-hearted or the squeamish – is named BODY WORLDS Vital (one of 11 different BODY WORLDS exhibitions), and it opened yesterday (9 August) at the V&A Waterfront. Brought to South Africa by Great World Exhibitions, there have been more than 42 million people in over 100 cities across the globe who have witnessed the amazing BODY WORLDS exhibition series, and now it’s our turn to be wowed!

Perfect for the young and the young at heart, BODY WORLDS Vital offers everyone the chance to view the human body like never before. Even after seeing two amazing shows in two different parts of the world, I am just as excited to see what BODY WORLDS Vital has to offer, and I know that I will be just as interested and just as intrigued as I was previously.

“As an organisation that continually looks for new ways to help people live healthier lives, we believe Dr Gunther von Hagens’ ground breaking preservation process offers people a real-life opportunity to experience the wonder of the human body,” says Discovery Health CEO, Dr Jonathan Broomberg.

“A specific focus for Discovery is to give people relevant tools and support to take care of their health and wellness at every stage of their lives, and through preventive medicine and innovative lifestyle interventions, our aim is to help prevent the onset and manage health conditions affected by lifestyle choices,” adds Broomberg.

A new addition to Gunther von Hagens’ series, BODY WORLDS Vital gives visitors the opportunity to witness how daily lifestyle choices not only affect our bodies, but our overall health. The exhibition features 16 brand spanking new whole body Plastinates – one of which includes the unique floating couple for adult viewing that is on display for the first time in Cape Town – and 160 organs, body parts and transparent body slices, all of which show the human body’s intelligent inner workings, explore how it functions, demonstrate its resilience and shoes what happens when disease strikes.

Some of the exhibits will include a pair of figure skaters performing a skillful lift, a soccer player dribbling a ball, and a chess player plotting sitting at a table plotting his next move. Each of these exhibits show different aspects of the body’s muscular structures, their functioning and their potential.

“Vital is a new and different exhibition experience which is not only educational but also enlightening and in some instances life-changing,” says Tyrone Thöle, Managing Director of Great World Exhibitions.

“Surveys conducted among visitors after six months demonstrated the long-lasting positive effects of the exhibition on the overall behavior. Even after half a year, 9 % of the visitors smoked less or consumed less alcohol, 33 % followed a healthier diet, 25% engaged in more sports and 14 % became more aware of their body. ”

Where do the bodies come from?

Every body on display have been willed by donors who want to increase the public’s awareness of the human body. There have been more than 16 000 donors from around the world to date who have donated their bodies after they die to Dr. von Hagens’ Institute for Plastination that is located in Heidelberg, Germany.

Additional Information about BODY WORLDS Vital

If you attend the exhibition during the first few days, you will have the chance to meet Dr Angelina Whalley, Curator and Conceptual Designer of the BODY WORLDS exhibitions, who has flown in from Germany to introduce Vital to Cape Town.

The exhibition will be open every day of the week between 10h00 and 19h00 and bookings can be made at

  • Exhibition Dates 9 August to 23 October 2016 inclusive
  • Venue Watershed, V&A Waterfront, Cape Town
  • Estimated time to view the entire exhibition 1.5 – 2 hours

Ticket Prices (excludes Audio Guide)

Booking your tickets online is recommended to avoid disappointment.

  • Adults (18 years+): Discounted weekdays: R120 pp;
  • Weekends, public holidays and school holidays: R160 pp
  • Children* (6 to 17 years): Any day, special child rate: R100 pp. Children 5 years and younger enter for free.
  • Family (2 adults + 2 children or 1 adult + 3 children): Discounted weekdays: R360. Weekends, public holidays and school holidays: R440
  • Group booking are available for schools or larger parties.

Audio Guides: R40 per unit


For more information, visit

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