Texas Medical Center (TMC) Tours
We offer 5 different Texas Medical Center (TMC) tours to cater to our clients’ desires. They range from 2 to 6 hours.
The tours begin at the Houston Visitors Center in downtown. Please click here to be connected to the address and parking information.
The Texas Medical Center is the largest medical center in the world. It employs over 106,000 people and is second to only the energy sector in the Houston economy. It encases a massive area, covering over 1.5 square miles, and continues to grow. It has over 50 medical related institutions, including over 20 hospitals. People come from all over the world for some of the highest quality care and most advanced breakthroughs in medicine. Some hospitals are public; some are private. Many hospitals have their own specialty treatment. For example, the University of Texas M. D. Anderson Cancer Center is world renowned for its cancer treatment. Texas Children’s Hospital is considered one of the top five pediatric hospitals in the United States. Women fly into Houston from throughout the world to have in vitro fertilization at the Women’s Hospital of Texas. Methodist Hospital and St. Luke’s Hospital have been known for generations for their heart care. Memorial Hermann Hospital is known for its general care, trauma care, and rehabilitation. Ben Taub Hospital pioneered Life Flight and has been the model for other hospitals for dealing with trauma and emergency care. The TMC was established in 1945.
The Texas Medical Center has had some of the world’s most famous surgeons. Michael DeBakey (1908 – 2008) was at Methodist Hospital. He was respected for encouraging military mobile army surgical hospitals (MASH) close to the front lines in the Korean War that are now standard and the development of heart pumps and grafting to replace blood vessels. Denton Cooley (1920 – Present) continues to lead the Texas Heart Institute (THI) at St. Luke’s Hospital. He was the first United State doctor to transplant a human heart and the world’s first doctor to implant a totally artificial heart. James Henry “Red” Duke, Jr. (1928 – Present) is a trauma surgeon at the University of Texas Health Science Center and Memorial Hermann. He has worked tirelessly to educate the public and teach future generations of doctors. He is one of the most recognized medical personalities in the country. The television show Buck James was based on him.
A number of famous people have been patients in the TMC. Former United States representative from Arizona Gabriel Giffords (1970 – Present) rehabbed after being shot in the head at Memorial Hermann Hospital. Former President George Herbert Walker Bush (1924 – Present) has gone to Methodist Hospital several times. The wealthiest man in the world at one time, Howard Robard Hughes, Jr. (1905 – 1976), would use an alias, John T. Conover, to maintain his reclusive stature when admitted for treatment. The Shah of Iran Mohammad Reza Pahlavi (1919 – 1980) came here for cancer treatment in 1979.
- Tour A is 2 hours. This is a driving tour through the Texas Medical Center (TMC). The starting time can be flexible.
- Tour B is 3 hours. This is a driving and walking tour through the TMC. The starting time can be flexible.
- Tour C is 4 hours. This tour starts at 9:00 AM and ends at 1:00 PM. This is a driving and walking tour with a stop at the William D. Wilson Museum at the Texas Heart Institute of St. Luke’s Hospital. There is an emphasis on the achievements of Dr. Denton Cooley. The William D. Wilson Museum is open everyday from 8:00 AM to 5:00 PM. The Michael DeBakey Library and Museum can substitute for the William D. Wilson Museum on Monday through Friday.
- Tour D is 5 hours. This tour starts at 9:00 AM and ends at 2:00 PM. This tour includes the driving and walking tour, the William D. Wilson Museum, and a stop for lunch at the Waterside Food Court or some other unique restaurant or cafeteria in the TMC.
- Tour E is 6 hours. This tour starts at 9:00 AM and ends at 3:00 PM. This tour includes the driving and walking tour, the William D. Wilson Museum, a stop for lunch, and touring the Michael DeBakey Library and Museum. This latter museum is only open on Monday through Friday, except holidays from 9:00 AM to 5:00 PM.
We can mix and match elements of various tours as requested. For example, if someone only wants to go to the two museums and on a driving tour for 4 hours, we can plan accordingly.
Note: In addition to these tours that are largely driving tours, we also offer walking tours through the Texas Medical Center. Click here for information about the walking tours that we offer through the Texas Medical Center.