Message to Guests

We look forward to welcoming you back to Outback Astronomy on the other side of the COVID-19 pandemic when current restrictions are lifted.

Until then, stay safe and well. Happy holiday planning!

Spectacular Sky Encounter

When you book an Outback Astronomy sky show, plan to be enchanted, informed, entertained and amazed.

The clear views of our night sky are spectacular, perfect for stargazing.

At your sky show, you will virtually travel across the stars and learn about these bright shining structures. We will show you famous constellations, planets and distant moons. We will introduce you to the wonderful world of stargazing and science and in doing so, we map out our human history.

The sky and its iconic contents on the night of your sky show will be demystified by the narration of your knowledgeable sky guide.

We use plain English language.

We avoid technical jargon.

We simplify concepts of space.

No prior astronomy knowledge is required.

What you see in the sky is the launch pad for your virtual galactic tour. You may feel like you are floating off into space.

We use optical equipment suited to the sky show.

Each guest will have use of binoculars for the sky show. Most sky shows involve telescope viewing. You should not bring your own binoculars or telescopes.

When opportunity permits, we introduce examples of Australian Aboriginal astronomy.

Audio

For small groups, guests are issued with an audio unit to hear live commentary by the sky guide.

Please bring your own ear phones to plug into the unit. Our audio units accept any standard round 3.5mm connector. You can opt to purchase ear phones as you book your sky show event online. A range of reasonably priced units are available.

A public address system is used for larger groups.

Astro-Imaging

You are more than welcome to bring your camera for astro-imaging. Please advise us upon arrival and we can set you up in a safe place where you will not be disturbed.

Hangout with the Stars®

Our signature sky show is hosted most clear, dark evenings in the lunar cycle, every month of the year on our sky dome. This is an outdoors venue.

Allow 90 minutes for this sky show. Allow an additional 30 minutes to gather your coats and other warm gear and drive to and from our specially prepared stargazing site. When you book your sky show online, you will receive a confirmation email containing all the information you will need to prepare for your stargazing experience.

It is important to book in advance of your sky show as we set up especially for you, for each event.

Book by phoning 0427 055 225 if you cannot book online.

We try to lockdown and blackout our stargazing site at least 30 minutes prior to the commencement of a sky show.

Hang out with the Stars® PLUS

Enjoy your sky show with food and beverage service under the stars. We serve a variety of premium cheese, crackers, nuts, dried and fresh fruits with a glass of red or white wine sourced from award-winning vineyards from Orange and Mudgee within NSW.

When you book online, please take time to advise us of special dietary needs and we will endeavour to accommodate.

Licensed Venue

Outback Astronomy is a licensed venue. The Sky Dome Café is located next to our sky dome.

Please do not bring food or drinks with you.

You may purchase drinks when you arrive.

Please review our Sky Show Menu here or at www.skydomecafe.com.au for a selection of snacks and platters specifically suited to sky shows.

Some sky shows have food and beverage service included in the price. For example, a sky show with the word “PLUS” in the title indicates food and beverage options are included.

You must be 18 years or older to purchase alcoholic beverages in New South Wales.

Liquor Act 2007

It is against the law to sell or supply alcohol to, or to obtain alcohol on behalf of, a person under the age of 18 years.

Staying Warm Outdoors

Until further notice, we request you bring own sleeping bags or cosy, warm blankets, coats and all other warm gear. We cannot supply personal warm gear eg beanies, scarves, gloves, blankets or sleeping bags.

Outback Astronomy may light a campfire on very cold evenings to provide additional warmth for guests. However, never rely on a campfire as conditions may not be appropriate.

What to Wear

The night time temperature may drop to 0 degrees Celsius from April to November in Broken Hill.

We host our shows outdoors. You must dress appropriately for cold conditions.

Wear several layers of clothing including thermal underclothes if you have them. You can always peel off layers if you are warm. We recommend six layers in winter.

At any time of year, we suggest you wear full length trousers and long-sleeved shirt, with closed in shoes or boots.

For additional warmth, please wear or bring:

  • Vest, jackets or pullovers, wind jacket, overcoat
  • Scarf, beanie, gloves

Coudy Weather

Broken Hill is typically clear and dry. We positively plan to stargaze.

Sometimes, weather systems quickly move through our region. In this case we may delay the start time of the sky show.

If it is possible to forecast conditions before a sky show, we will text you weather updates and advice. We encourage you to book early in your visit if you are in Broken Hill for several days to maximise flexibility in attendance.

If your sky show is cancelled due to cloud, you can elect to be rescheduled or refunded. If possible, rather than cancel, we may consult with you and offer an alternative event.

Celestial Cycles

Our sky show calendar is mindful of celestial cycles.

When planning your trip, consider the following broad guidelines reflected in our calendar of events:

  • The darkest nights feature the sky show Hang out with the Stars®
  • When the Moon is in the evening sky we tend to package a sky show with food and beverage service on the sky dome

We adapt stargazing techniques to suit conditions. Specific details are in the sky show descriptions.

We share knowledge with you. You can enjoy informed stargazing when it suits you.

Day Activities

The Sky Dome Café supports our day time activities and presentations.

Sun gazing is scheduled on most days when the café operates. Bookings are required.

Other day time presentations can be scheduled according to demand.

We will schedule astronomy themed talks during school holiday times, public holidays and other selected dates. Please enquire with us about scheduling activities for your family or colleagues.

Location

Outback Astronomy, located five kilometres from the edge of Broken Hill.

If you plan to self-drive, allow up to 15 minutes to travel here from most parts of Broken Hill.

Our location is very dark on Moon-free evenings. There is no light pollution. There are no cities around for hundreds of kilometres.