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  1. New Zealand
  2. Canterbury
  3. Lake Tekapo
  4. Mt John Observatory

Lake Tekapo: 2-Hour Stargazing Tour at Mt John Observatory

Product ID: 197761
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Spend 2-hour discovering the constellations visible in the southern sky. Admire the stars through powerful telescopes. If the sky is clouded over, learn more about the research that goes on at Mount John Observatory.
About this activity
Duration 2 hours
Printed or mobile voucher accepted
Instant confirmation
Live tour guide
Free cancellation up to 24 hours before activity starts

Select participants and date:



  • Look deep into the cosmos with a powerful telescope
  • Learn about the objects and constellations visible in the night sky
  • Stay warm in US Antarctic Expedition jackets that really went to Antarctica
  • Benefit from a solar-charged LED flashlight that is yours to take home after the tour
  • Warm up with a delicious hot chocolate
Full description
Tour the University of Canterbury Mount John Observatory and spend the evening discovering what the southern sky has to offer. Experience the thrill of looking deep into the cosmos with powerful telescopes.

On a clear night, you’ll be introduced to the objects and constellations visible to the naked eye. Then look through several powerful telescopes set up outside under the stars. During a full moon, the fainter stars and Milky Way are washed out. A partial moon will affect the sky less and look amazing through the telescope. If there is no moon during your tour, the sky will be at its darkest with the most detail visible.

If the stars are hidden from view, get a glimpse of what a life is like as an astronomer. See a range of research equipment, and learn about the research that goes on at the world’s southernmost optical observatory in Lake Tekapo.
  • Guide
  • Round-trip transportation from Lake Tekapo
  • Stargazing equipment
  • Souvenir solar-charged LED flashlight
  • Use of US Antarctic Expedition jackets
  • Hot chocolate

Prepare for the activity

Meeting point

The local partner’s office, Twizel Main Street, Fairlie-Tekapo Road, Lake Tekapo, New Zealand.

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Important information
What to bring
  • Warm clothing
  • Hat
Not allowed
  • Open-toed shoes
Know before you go
• Tour restricted to children over 8 years of age
• White lights are prohibited on the tour (LCD screens, flash photography, illuminated mobile phones, flashlights, torches)
• Weather conditions cannot be guaranteed, not all objects may be visible on a given night
• Objects viewed through telescopes will generally appear only black and white
• Due to changing sunset times throughout the year, your exact departure time will be confirmed one week prior to your tour
• Tours will only be canceled if there are high winds, rain, or if the conditions are too dangerous due to ice or snow. If it’s cloudy, the tour will still go up to Mount John and you’ll explore some of the research facilities and enjoy an astronomy multimedia presentation
Customer reviews
Overall rating
4.3 / 5
based on 4 reviews
Review summary
Value for money

Organized by

Dark Sky Project

Product ID: 197761