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Stardome Offers Celestial Navigation Course

Monday 14 February 2005


Ever wondered how you would fair at sea or in the great outdoors without today’s advanced technologies?

Here’s your chance to learn to navigate the old fashioned way, without even a compass as guidance.

With similar classes provided to the New Zealand military and various kayak clubs, the Stardome Observatory in Auckland is running celestial navigation classes for boaties and outdoor sports enthusiasts in March.

Designed to teach participants how to navigate using nothing but the stars and sun, the live two-hour classes are held in the Stardome’s Planetarium, an all-sky, 360 degree panoramic theatre.

With a view of the night sky projected overhead, the class is taken on a tour of the night sky as seen from New Zealand and other parts of the world, and taught the basics of how to find direction and tell the time using the stars and sun as guidance.

Suitable for beginners with limited or no knowledge of astronomy, Stardome presenter Andrew Buckingham recommends the class to boaties, trampers, mountain climbers, even back-country skiers or snowboarders.

“Navigation by the sky is an ancient art, used for thousands of years before the invention of technologies like GPS. It’s a great tool to have even today, especially in the event of a technology failure or accident,” says Andrew.

Classes are scheduled for the evening of Thursday 17 March, with additional classes on Tuesday 15 March if needed.

Space is limited, so bookings are essential. Cost is $15 per person, or $12 per person for groups of 20 or more. To make a booking or for further information, contact Kylie on tel (09) 624 1246.

The Stardome Observatory is located in One Tree Hill Domain in Auckland. For further information on the Stardome Observatory, visit


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