Cultural Area

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At OMA we believe that encouraging the arts and helping develop culture contribute to moments of relaxation that feed the spirit. That is why at our airports you can find different expositions, such as sculpture, paintings, photography, etc.

You can find the following pieces at the Tampico airport:

"Tampico Airport, First Destination"

"Tampico Airport, First Destination" honors the importance of Tampico International Airport in Mexican aviation history.

This exposition is made possible thanks to the support of Mexicana de Aviacion, the Ministry of Communications and Transportation, and ASA.


In the early twentieth century, flying was an adventure. Back then it was hard to imagine that what only a few adventurers had accomplished would become an everyday experience within everyone's reach today.  One of these first adventures happened here, in Tampico, when Harry Lawson, a WWI pilot, realized that there was a critical need for communication between the port and the oil fields.

Lawson, along with L.A. Winship and Elmer C.Hammond, founded the Compañía Mexicana de Transportación Aérea (CMTA), and they obtained the first government concession to operate the Mexico City-Tampico route via Tuxpan on July 12, 1921.

CMTA's inaugural flight took off August 21, 1921, with its first passenger.

Lawson sold the company in 1923 to a group of investors headed by George H. Rhil. This new organization was created August 20, 1923 as the Compañía Mexicana de Aviación (CMA), Mexico's first airline, with worldwide prestige.

The first airfield in Tampico was established at the Moralillo, near a bridge of the same name. It had a hangar, a mechanical shop and dirt runways. Later it moved to the banks of the Río Pánuco. The old terminal of the Tampico Airport adopts the name George Rhil in honor of its founder and on March 10th of that same year, the first international route in America is inaugurated with a flight from Brownsville, Texas, to Mexico City.

The legendary Charles Lindbergh commanded the first flight of the Ford trimotor named “Mexico”. This new equipment, with a 13 passenger capacity, revolutionized the transportation sector and signaled the start of “mass market” commercial aviation.

The old Terminal was witness to another aspect of Mexican aviation history, when it became the obligatory stopover for U.S. military planes in 1941 during World War II.

The old Terminal building still exists, with some modifications, and despite its limitations it remained in operation until 1970, when the new terminal building was inaugurated.

In 1988, the Tampico International Airport became part of Grupo Aeroportuario Centro Norte (OMA), a company created when the Mexican Airport System was privatized.