Places related to astronomy, including historical sites, planetariums and museums.
Astronomers on the Mountain Tops
Big telescopes on high mountains, drawing astronomers to some exotic-sounding places. Is it as glamorous as it sounds? Not really, says one astronomer who describes some of the symptoms people suffer at high altitudes.
Herschel Museum of Astronomy
In 1781 William Herschel was the first person in history to discover a new planet. He was observing in the back garden of his home in Bath, England. The house where history was made is a museum and its new Caroline Lucretia Gallery is named for William's sister, the first woman to discover a comet.
Hurtigruten - Hunting the Light
Imagine a three thousand-mile astronomy voyage “hunting the light”. Usually, astronomers avoid the light, but not when it's the aurora borealis, the famed northern lights. Here is the first of two articles about the Norwegian ships that carry cargo and people between the towns of the Arctic Circle.
Hurtigruten - Seeing the Northern Lights
What would it be like to take an astronomy tour on the Hurtigruten? Here is an account of some of the highlights of a trip around the coast of Norway in search of the northern lights. We heard stories of the constellations and then found them in the sky. And one night we saw the aurora dancing.
Illuminations - A Planetarium Afloat
Why is the Illuminations Planetarium unique? It's the only one that sails the seas. Purpose-built as part of a theater on board Cunard Liner Queen Mary 2, it shows astronomy films, and on some voyages, astronomers from the Royal Astronomical Society in London use it to present the night sky.
An observatory that a king built to watch the 1769 transit of Venus. The place where official time for London used to be set. Where a murderer was sometimes in attendance when the King walked in the gardens. Find out about the history of Kew Observatory.
Lick Observatory - 10 Fascinating Facts
Lick Observatory lies high on a mountaintop overlooking Silicon Valley. Known for major contributions to astronomy, it also has some unusual features. Its benefactor James Lick is buried under one of the main telescopes and its original seismogram of the 1906 San Francisco earthquake is on display.
Northern Lights Planetarium
Tromsø, far to the north of Norway, attracts summer visitors to see the midnight sun and winter visitors to see the aurora borealis. The Northern Lights Planetarium is the northermost planetarium in the world. It's worth a visit at anytime, but extra welcome if it's too cloudy to see the sky.
A mile above the California desert stands Palomar Observatory. Its 200-inch mirror was officially impossible to make, but George Ellery Hale's vision inspired a nation in the grip of the Great Depression and became the jewel in the crown of astronomy for the second half of the twentieth century.
Royal Observatory Cape of Good Hope
Why did the British government in 1820 want to build an astronomical observatory eight thousand miles from home? Which astronomers are buried on the premises and which one went home after a year in the "dismal swamp"? Here are some of the stories of the Royal Observatory at the Cape of Good Hope.
Royal Observatory Greenwich
It's the place where time begins: The Royal Observatory, Greenwich, England. Here you can stand on the Prime Meridian of the world with one foot in the western hemisphere and the other in the eastern hemisphere. It represents over three hundred years of astronomical and maritime history.
Space at the Science Museum London
Where can you see the Apollo 10 command module and the original mirror for William Herschel's Great Forty-Foot telescope? In the Science Museum in South Kensington, London, England. And there is quite a lot more on offer to those interested in space and astronomy.
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The Wizard Earl, the start of astronomy with a telescope, Sir Walter Raleigh, Virginia, the Gunpowder Plot, and the Smithsonian. What does all of this history have in common? Syon Park, a stately home on the River Thames.
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