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Astrotourism is basically space tourism. While going out as an astronaut is a privilege for only a few, due to the vast clear skies in Australia, there are plenty of observatories and parks in Australia where the beauty of space can be seen.

If you're used to stargazing in the northern hemisphere, Australia provides a unique stargazing experience – not only because of its open skies, but as Australia is in the Southern Hemisphere, you may see some constellations the other way around, or even completely new ones. The most notable one of them all is the Southern Cross, which is resembled on the Australian flag.

Sites[edit]

Map of Astrotourism in Australia

New South Wales[edit]

  • 1 Bathurst Observatory Research Facility, 6 Priors Ln, Billywillinga, +61 427 292 214. mainly an observatory site for education and research purposes, but also does telescope tours as well. Research includes the study of meteorites, as well as astrophotography.
  • 2 CSIRO Parkes Radio Telescope, Telescope Road, Parkes, New South Wales, Australia (when going along the A39 Newell Highway, there are clear signs telling you when to turn.). A radio telescope, which was the first telescope to detect signals from the moon back in 1969. There is a small museum with some stuff of interest to kids. There is a cafe with decent coffee and sandwiches. But the spot itself with the telescope and the wide-country and blue sky is quite special on a sunny day - even if you have no interest in space or telescopes. free - although you can pay to watch a short film when you arrive. Parkes Observatory (Q148044) on Wikidata Parkes Observatory on Wikipedia
  • 3 Dubbo Observatory, 17L Camp Rd, Dubbo, +61 488 425 940. An observatory 15 km away from Dubbo where tours run, for all sorts of things, but the one thing that isn't missed is the Milky Way.
  • 4 Linden Observatory, 105 Glossop Rd, Linden. Part of the Western Sydney Amateur Astronomy Group Inc., welcome for anyone to join. $10 per person.
  • 5 Outback Astronomy, 18817 Barrier Hwy, Broken Hill, +61 427 055 225. Only a 15 minute drive from the Broken Hill city centre, one can never be so tired of seeing the same thing here again and again, with this being one of the most notable observatories in Outback NSW, with some extra focus on Saturn.
  • 6 Siding Spring Observatory, Observatory Rd, Coonabarabran (27km west of Coona town centre, perched at the edge of the Warrambungles.), +61 2 6842 6363. With an elevation of about 1160m, not just with the numerous telescopes, there is also a visitors' gallery and exhibition area open to the public which also incorporates a café and souvenir shop. During NSW school holidays, guided tours of the site are offered. Groups of over 15 adults may apply for Behind the Scenes walking or bus tours. An Open Day is held annually in October, offering talks about astronomy and tours inside many of the telescope domes which are open to the public on this one day of the year. These tours include the AAT 3.9M, UK Schmidt, iTelescope.Net, 2.3M ANU and the LCGTN 2M telescope facilities. Siding Spring also has multiple telescopes ranging in size from 0.45m to about 4m, all which has to show something unique. Siding Spring Observatory (Q930096) on Wikidata Siding Spring Observatory on Wikipedia
  • 7 Sydney Observatory, Watson Road, Observatory Hill (1003 Upper Fort St, Millers Point), +61 2 9217 0111. Australia's oldest observatory. It has a variety of exhibitions, a “beanbag planetarium” and of course, telescopes. The parks and views of the harbour from the Observatory Hill are exceptional. It's worth a visit even if you have no interest in astronomy and are not even going into the building. You can book a night tour guided by an astronomer, when you're allowed to use the telescope and see what is visible during night time. The old telescopes here aren't the most powerful around; the portable telescopes set up are just as powerful as the large ones in the domes. It makes for a fun, informative night out. Children are catered for in both the daytime and evening sessions. Daytime admission is free. For night tours adults $20-22 and children $14-15. Sydney Observatory (Q7660067) on Wikidata Sydney Observatory on Wikipedia

Queensland[edit]

South Australia[edit]

Western Australia[edit]

  • 11 Carnarvon Space and Technology Museum, Mahony Ave, Brown Range, +61 8 9941 9901. 09:00-16:00 daily. This museum displays the little known history of Carnarvon's role in the manned space industry, and Australia's role in the space industry. The museum can be split up into two. One focusing about the tracking station, and the other with the OTC Earth Satellite Station. Carnarvon Tracking Station on Wikipedia

Other locations[edit]

  • Yanyan (HD 38283 b). Astronomical object discovered in 2011 near Jupiter. Known to be Australia's official exoplanet, it is a Boonwurrung word meaning boy. Yanyan (Q5176114) on Wikidata HD 38283 b on Wikipedia

Museums[edit]

See also[edit]

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