Canarian Astronomy Tour

Canary Islands, Spain

AS
Amar Sharma
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Aug 11 - 16, 2018
Group size: 14 - 20
Canarian Astronomy Tour
Canary Islands, Spain

Amar Sharma
  • Email address verified
  • LinkedIn verified
  • Twitter verified

Aug 11 - 16, 2018
Group size: 14 - 20

About this trip

 Located a scant 100 kilometers from the north-western African mainland in the North Atlantic Ocean is an archipelago consisting of 7 islands of volcanic origin. The topography of the archipelago soars from sea level to the summit of Mount Teide – the highest peak in Spain and the 3rd largest dormant volcano peak in the world – at 12,198 feet (3718 meters) above sea level.


Canary Islands are talked about as sporting the cleanest & clearest skies in Europe! The Canaries are 40% area-wise environmentally protected through 4 National Parks and 7 UNESCO- designated Biosphere Reserves. Gifted with over 3000 hours of sunshine per year, it makes the islands’ climate pleasant & attractive – to astronomy.


The Trade Wind breezes and temperature-inversion phenomena found here blow away any cumulus clouds and restrict them to rise no higher than 500 meters above sea level forming a layer below. This renders exceptional conditions to observe upward. What is more is the ‘Law for Astronomical Quality‘ formulated by the region’s Instituto de Astrofísica de Canarias (IAC) that has protected the quality of the night sky here. Thus, the Canaries boast the privilege of having 3 ‘Starlight Reserves‘ at the islands of La Palma, Santa Cruz de Tenerife and Fuerteventura, where the clarity of the night sky is internationally recognised.


That’s where we’re headed!


Two plus two nights, totally four nights – for the sky – at such an altitude in Tenerife Island and La Palma Island. Due to strict rules in the national parks at Canary Islands, where activity is restricted for the full night, we try to observe as much of the whole night from the designated astronomical viewpoints. However, we have reserved 2 of the biggest amateur telescopes anywhere in the Islands for our exclusive 2 full night access – one is a mighty 31.5-inch (80-cm) aperture, other is a very big 19.5-inch (50-cm) aperture. You can trust us when we say, or even ask any amateur in the world, and you will hear “You could not have asked for any more!” These truly large apertures will let us view the celestial objects in such glory & detail that it is going to mind boggle the observer – just wait for it to know what it is to “scream at the eyepiece”!


Each participant will learn, observe, record/log and navigate through the skies using their own binocular primarily, and the amateurs’ telescopes. Situated at 28* latitude above the Equator, we will be treated with views of the treasures of northern skies, those galaxies, and the northern Milky Way band’s assets like scattered open clusters and playful double stars. 


 Well, it’s an astronomy tour, so we will be visiting – luckily – the jaw-dropping, gigantic structures – professional observatories – for day guided tours. The islands in total host at least 35-40 (!) world-class professional astronomical instruments. On Tenerife Island we’ll tour the Teide Observatory, also hosting the largest solar observatory in Europe. On La Palma Island we’ll tour the Roque de los Muchachos Observatory, which hosts an extensive fleet of instruments. At both the professional facilities we’ll get an insight into how astrophysicists here conduct their research, what projects they are involved in, the various instruments there, and history of these observatories.


We have another surprise and, in fact, we are very lucky for this. The night of especially August 12 is the much-awed & awaited yearly Perseid Meteor Shower peak night. We will be able to witness the spectacular meteors from a unique vantage like Canary Islands for even the nights after that. This celestial display of ‘fireworks’ will serve to be one of the most memorable meteor showers that could ever be for you – hold your breath before every ‘oohs‘ & ‘aahs‘ for every zipping streak in the sky. 


Join Skyward with AstronAmar – the founder of international astronomy tourism in India – for this unforgettable high-altitude starry Canarian experience! 

INCLUSIONS

 

  • All Canary Islands accommodations on twin sharing basis – single supplement is additional cost
  • All meals – breakfast, lunch, dinner
  • Sightseeing, entry tickets, permits & activities at the Islands: Tenerife and La Palma
  • All road transfers
  • Internal flight transfer
  • All permits for our visits including the 2 professional observatories
  • Access to two of the biggest telescopes at 80-cm & 50-cm (!) in the entire Islands for 2 whole nights at Tenerife (based on availability of renting)
  • One English speaking local guide during our stay
  • Small astronomy kit from Skyward with AstronAmar including logbook & sketching sheets, notepad, stationery material
  • Astronomy gift item
  • Amar Sharma’s stay & local cost with group

EXCLUSIONS

 

  • Flight from India or elsewhere to Canary Islands and return
  • Spanish visa
  • Amar Sharma’s flight + visa cost with group from Bangalore / Mumbai and back here
  • All ground, air & water insurances – compulsory
  • All airport taxes
  • Any excess baggage and handling costs during to-fro international flights or at airports
  • Any meals not included in above
  • Any outdoor activities not included in above
  • Snacks for overnight stays
  • Any shopping of personal nature
  • Any tips, gratuities and porterage, also laundry and telephone calls, etc.
  • Any cost related inconveniences caused by flight delays, cancellations or route deviation
  • Any increase in air fare, fuel surcharge & taxes
  • Any increase in the rate of currency exchange which may come in to effect prior to departure
  • Any additional requirements for tour extensions opted

Before You Go

 We will not be providing any of these, it is your responsibility to bring them; inconvenience or inability caused there forth is at your own risk or liability:

  • All identity proofs – original and photocopy
  • Any prescribed medicines – additionally for high altitude sickness
  • Toilet kit
  • Sun-screen cream
  • Mosquito repellent cream
  • Winter wear for up to +10oC and chilly winds, to be safe; two layers each for top & bottom, as a chance & precaution
  • Winter hood or skull cap
  • Gloves
  • Socks & shoes
  • Cap
  • Empty water bottle
  • Bright torch – non-mobile phone
  • Binoculars – this is a binocular tour where each participant has to carry their own set (10×50 specification preferable)
  • DSLR cameras & tripods (for your night sky photography), and any similar items / accessories
  • Mobile phone charging unit of that country’s design / configuration
  • Anything else you deem important to be carried

Please communicate for any other personal requirements.

Itinerary

Arrival at Tenerife
Day 1

AUGUST 11

Arrival at  Santa Cruz de Tenerife

Transfer to accommodation

Free night / rest

Your Organizer


AS
Amar Sharma
An amateur astronomer for last 16 years, one who chose to make his profession popularizing astronomy and making the society look up at the night sky. An experienced observational astronomer having spent thousands of hours under the night sky, Amar is also far too involved in many other creative areas of astronomy. He's an: invigorated communicator; extremely expressive writer; author of the upcoming deepest book on amateur astronomy; compiler of encyclopedia on 20th century comet hunters; discoverers; ccd camera imager; astrosketcher; dark sky conservator; fighter of light pollution; aspiring documentary film maker; pioneer of astronomy tourism in India; and more. Amar happens to be the first accidental discoverer of a celestial object (Mira-type variable star) using a ccd camera in personal capacity, in the modern history of India! World renowned comet hunter David Levy honoured him with his own asteroid discovery as "380607 Sharma"! He's India's *most* active amateur astronomer!