Last Updated 13th April 2014
Bathurst Observatory Research Facility, Bathurst NSW Australia.
Please read our news page for latest information on what is happening at the observatory.
We also have a Facebook page! Just like us at Bathurst Observatory Research Facility. Lots of images and the latest news.
Bathurst Observatory Research Facility is an observatory site primarily for research and study, though we do offer general public viewing nights.
Open Nights Star Tours.
Bookings essential for all tours.
(All tours subject to weather)
Night Tours for April 2014
Scheduled Tours for April will be 7:30 pm!
Tours are available for any night (except Sundays). * There may be some research nights where tours are not available and these will be listed below.
Note there is a special night for the lunar eclipse on the 15th of April.
Lunar Eclipse Night starts at 5:15. The Eclipsed Moon rises about 5:30 pm and the Moon starts to leave Earth's shadow at about 6:30 pm. Booking Essential and filling fast!
Also note the observatory is NOT available in the week after full Moon. (Tours resume 22nd April after Full Moon) - as such no tours Easter weekend.
* No scheduled research days at present
Bookings are ESSENTIAL for all night tours.
For 2014 the cost will still be a donation per Adult and Child!!!! (School Groups welcome!)
Tour bookings and enquires, phone 02 6337 3988, or email using the link below.
How to find us? See Location description below!
Below left is an image of comet Panstarrs. The image was taken on the 20th of February 2013.
Below right is an image of Comet Lemmon, taken on the 17th of February 2013.
Why "Open Nights"?
We used to do tours using an observatory dome. However, we found that the dome itself blocked out most of the night sky! Our visitors wanted to view through a telescope but be able to see and hear about the wonders of the night sky at the same time. We particularly had many visitors from urban areas wanting to see a nice dark country sky full of stars. The solution, remove the dome! So now we set up the public telescope as nature wanted us to, on cleared ground, under the wonder of the Southern stars.
The feedback we have been getting about our "Open Nights" has been very positive so these tours will continue.
About Our Tours. Our tours are conducted with the only guide with over ten years educational astronomy experience and currently studying a Bachelor of Education Honours Degree! Our guide is also an internationally recognised expert in the field of meteorites.
Tours require bookings and are weather dependent. (We can't see stars through clouds!) Tour duration is about 1 hour, depending on time of year. We are located about 6 kilometres from Bathurst, so our skies are dark and full of stars!
We cater for all school astronomy and space excursions, as well as general public telescope tours of the night sky.
Primarily we offer our open night tours to inspire everyone to look to the night night sky.
The Milky Way stretches overhead in this view taken at the Bathurst Observatory Research Facility on the 11th August 2007.
The Bathurst Observatory Research Facility (Research and Meteorite Related Enquires and Public Viewing Nights)
The Bathurst Observatory Research Facility, located on the current site on Limekilns Road north east of Bathurst. At the research site, we study, comets, asteroids, variable stars, meteors and meteorites. For research related enquires phone (02) 6337 3988.
The tours under an open sky (no dome to spoil the views!!!!!) and these are generally run on either a Friday or Saturday night. Dates will be posted in advance, bookings essential!!!!! Also, to all those school groups that have missed my tours, call or email and we can arrange a date and time to suit. We also welcome any enquires or questions you may have on Astronomy, Space or meteorite related matters. You may also, by prior arrangement, book to come and view the meteorites and mineral and fossil display that we have at the research site.
Our news page is regularly updated, so have a look for the latest news about the observatory.
Don't forget smaller groups can arrange to view the meteorite and mineral display, just let me know when you book.
Solar Telescope Tours (Viewing the Sun)
On occasions, we are able to offer daytime telescope views of the sun. We have a special telescope that allows you to SAFELY view the sun. At present the availability of these tours will depend on three factors. 1, that I'm available on the day. 2, it is not cloudy. 3, that the sun has some active features. The third point is important, as sometimes the sun can be quiet and not as interesting to see. These tours will be about 15 minutes in duration and again by gold coin donation. Bookings for a solar tour would be essential.
Firstly, we are nearly impossible to locate! Follow directions carefully and remember to book.
Travelling from Sydney
you enter Bathurst and on your right you will pass the Gold Panner motor
inn with the big Gold panner man near the road.
Keep travelling and you
get to a set of lights. Go straight through the lights and take the next
right turn about 50 metres past the lights (View St) (if you get to another set of lights, you
missed the turn). Follow up this street until you get to the top. In front
are the Kelso little shops. Turn right. You will pass Kelso High further
along. Keep on driving along this road, you will follow this road for
about 6km. It becomes increasingly rural. The road will become an 80 zone
then a 100 zone further along. The tar is a bit broken up and needs repair
so be careful.
Once in the 100 zone you
will eventually pass Koonong place on your left. Keep going straight,
though our turn is now only a few hundred metres from Koonong. On your
right, not far now is a big lime green sign saying Heritage Park. Turn right into this road, immediately passing two world war
1 guns and over the small dirt bridge.
Follow this road about 300 metres until you reach some gates near an old cattle grid. There is a white sign on the right of these gates with Heritage Park etc on it. The gates may either be open or shut (we don't own these gates so have little control over them). If shut with a 'park closed today' sign on it, ignore the sign, and open the gates using the lever catch on the top where the two gates meet. Leave the gates open (though make sure you close them when you leave later that night). Follow the road for about 1.5 km, until you reach two old wagons either side of the road. Our turnoff is a dirt road to the right, about 40 - 50 metres past the wagons, not far past the tree on your right! There is a white post with a sign 'Observatory' attached to it. THIS IS OUR TURN OFF! Turn right immediately past the white post and sign. Yes it is a dirt road. If miss this turn you reach a building on your left or end up at the large car park. Our dirt road goes up behind the buildings staying to the right of them. The soccer field is on your right, Basically you appear to be driving up one side of it! Follow this dirt road, past the house like building on your left and the road will sweep around the building. Continue up the road and I will be at the end of this road and pointing to where to park.
There are two maps below to help you. Remember bookings are essential and I will help with information about finding us when you book!
The Map above shows you how to get to the Cattle Drome.
When you arrive at the Heritage Park car park, follow the map below!
Our Details are as follows
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