photo: Cristian Valenzuela / Observatorio del Pangue
We propose a series of services, ranging from the traditional 2-hours guided tour, to the loan of the full observatory for complete nights. Here we display the most popular services: for our additional proposals, or for any alternative service you could wish, don't hesitate to ask us.
□ TOUR ASTRO
Suitable for the general public, the Tour Astro allows our guests to discover the wonders of the Universe in optimal conditions. Not only you will observe through state-of-the-art telescopes, but you will deeply understand what you see, thanks to the clever, accurate, and always surprising explainations given by our personnel. Moreover, any query is welcome, and just every question will be answered, either about the latest astronomy news, or about leading astrophysics topics. Hence, without any previous knowledge in astronomy, you'll be allowed to truly enjoy the endless enchantment of the Universe to which we do belong.
The Tour Astro performs with a minimum of 5 people, and a strict maximum of 10 in order to preserve the personalized attention. The group is assisted by 2 astronomers. We are open all year, except the nights with excessive moonlight (see "Prices-Booking" page).
We admit children over 16 years old only.
The available languages are spanish, english, and french.
Unforgettable experiences are made of this: limited groups, friendly hosted by an astronomer, under a truly outstanding sky...
Photo: Miguel Carvajal
1. Departure from the agency in Vicuña, transfert to the Observatory aboard our minivan (about 30 minutes);
2. Welcome to the guests, sight of the stunning sunset landscape, with the great scientific observatories visible in the far (1st Tour only);
3. Unaided eye sight of the sky: constellations, Milky Way, Magellanic Clouds, etc...
4. Observing session through the T400 telescope (computarized, 16 inches of aperture). The programme includes all the wonders of the night, such as star clusters, nebulae, galaxies, not forgetting the Moon and planets as available, as well as any specific object you could wish to look at.
5. In the cold nights (which are quite rare...) we offer a hot drinks service in lounge, before the return to Vicuña.
The programme lasts 2 hours on site (3 hours in total with the transferts from/to Vicuña), and may include some short audiovisual presentations.
The departing time obviously depends on the seasons: in winter (june-july) the first Tour starts at 18H00 (6:00 pm) local time, while in summer (december-january) it starts at 21H00 (9:00 pm) local time, with the corresponding extrapolated times for the rest of the year. The second Tour starts exactly 2 hours later than the first one. Upon demand, a third Tour can be performed, also starting 2 hours later than the previous one.
Current departure from Vicuña: 20H00 (8:00 pm)
□ TOUR EXTREME
Same as the Tour Astro in its contents and timetable, but with the T600 telescope (25 inches of aperture).
Due to its proper characteristics, this programme is mainly intended for experienced observers like amateur astronomers: apart for being manually operated, the telescope is really big, so the eyepiece may locate 3 meters above ground level, indeed not so practical for general public...
The "effort" is worth anyway, since you will discover the stunning deep sky objects such as exotic nebulae or distant galaxy clusters, or even observe the familiar objects but under conditions you never expected to meet.
The Tour Extreme lasts 3 hours on site (4 hours in total including transfert from/to Vicuña).
photo: Miguel Carvajal
□ NIGHT EXTREME
Strictly intended for amateur astronomers, either individuals or groups (clubs and associations), either for visual observations or for performing some astrophotogtaphy.
The observers dispose of the complete facility: two main telescopes (participants are allowed to use the T400 computarized telescope too), visual observing and astrophotography accessories, charts, computers, etc... You can follow our observing lists, or perform your own observing programme. In every case, you'll benefit of a permanent technical assistance, and a free access to the cafeteria.
The programme Extreme Night is not time-limited, except maybe by the dawn...
The starting time also is established at the convenience of the group.
Imagine yourself in such a place...
In case of booking several consecutive nights, a saving tariff is aplicable. Members of astronomy clubs and associations may also benefit of an additional discount.
□ ASTROPHOTOGRAPHY SESSION
This programme is exclusively intended for astrophotographers who want to benefit of both optimum sky conditions and convenient location on Earth: from 30° latitude south, the wonders of the Southern Sky are almost always available high above the horizon. Unlike the previous ones, this is not a guided tour: the customers will manage themselves with the equipments we provide, that is the telescope and the usual accessories (camera adapters, filters,...) They will be alone at the dome, although we remain on site for any help or assistance that may be needed. This programme, operative since december 2016, includes two telescopes specifically designed for astrophotography: a newton Reginato of 28 inches (71cm) aperture, focal ratio f/3, and an astrograph PlaneWave of 20 inches (50cm) aperture, focal ratio f/6,8. They are currently installed, and fully calibrated: soon we'll indicate further details such as prices and conditions of use. Preliminary view of the two domes, when just installed, with the tiny silhouettes of the SOAR and Gemini South observatories visible in the far: