Nestled in a protected valley in Kuaotunu 16km north of Whitianga on the Coromandel Peninsula, Stargazers offers an ideal dark sky site to observe the stunning New Zealand southern night sky in all its dark sky glory with a range of optical tools.
This astronomy tour provides a comprehensive introduction to the NZ southern night sky. Commencing on a elevated stargazing observation deck you will learn to recognise several constellations and bright stars using a green laser pointer. Then, use the walk-in Pipehenge observing frame to learn how the stars and planets move in the sky and how the great New Zealand Maori and Polynesian voyagers used them for navigation across the Pacific Ocean.
You will continue with the professional 14″ Celestron CGE Pro 1400XLT telescope in the rotating 3.5m (11′) astronomy dome. View a range of objects including the moon, stars, planets and galaxies depending on availability on the night of your visit. Children can operate the dome rotation during the astronomy tour to give a clear view of the NZ sky.
Back at reception you will have ample time to examine and handle several 4½ billion year old meteorites and learn about the history of the classic Spitz A2 planetarium projector currently undergoing restoration and how it is used. There are several unique hands-on displays about things astronomical, geological and scientific including 150 million year old dinosaur bones. The astronomy tour concludes with a walk through a 25m scale model of the Solar System.
A hot drink is provided while stargazing to ward off the evening chill and a detailed information pack including a sundial kit is supplied to enable you to further your astronomy interests at home!
Why is this Chuffed Worthy?
On our first recruitment road trip around the Coromandel, we found Stargazers BnB just beyond the peninsulas traditional holidaymaker route. What we really found was a husband & wife passion project, so authentic & unique that it couldn’t be ignored! No wonder it has proven so popular with Chuffed customers to date!