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The winter solstice marks the day where we have the longest night of the year, an astronomer’s ultimate playground!
But did you know this day is where most of our traditions around Christmas began?
In years past, the winter solstice has been celebrated by many around the world, as they watched and willed the suns return after the long night. It is a day that has become imbedded in our history, culture and calendars.
Join us on this dark evening to celebrate this intriguing astronomical event, find out why it happens and what the winter solstice looks like around the world.
And if it’s clear; you will be standing under some of the darkest skies around!
On clear nights we will focus on using our high-powered, large aperture robotic telescopes housed inside their turrets as well as our smaller manual telescopes under a blanket of stars on the observation deck.
Our team of expert astronomers will be on hand to navigate you around the night sky.
When observation isn't possible, we will look at the ways ancient astronomers navigated and developed meaning behind what they saw in the heavens. We will take you on a virtual tour of our skies, learning constellations and what they mean to us as observers. You will also be able to see and touch fragments of rock fallen to earth, frozen in time from the very origins of our solar system.
In the summer months we can still observe despite the lighter evenings, including the Moon, brighter planets, binary star systems, beautiful star clusters and maybe even the breath taking noctilucent clouds!
During the evening you will be treated to a hot drink of either tea, coffee or our famous hot chocolate as well as having the opportunity to support our charity further by taking home a memento of your visit to the observatory from our gift shop.
Whatever the weather, our team of experienced and passionate astronomers deliver a unique experience for all!