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Aotearoa Astrotourism Academy in Alexandra

Location: Centennial Court, Alexandra
Region: Alexandra
Dates: Sun, 14 April 2024

  • Aotearoa Astrotourism Academy in Alexandra

Astronomy and astrotourism course coming to Central Otago in April

An astronomy and astrotourism course for the public with a special emphasis on Matariki is coming to Alexandra in April. The dates will be the afternoon of Friday April 12th to 5 pm on Sunday April 14th.

The course is being offered by the Aotearoa Astrotourism Academy (AAA), a non-profit organization founded in 2021 by Professor John Hearnshaw, Emeritus Professor of Astronomy at Canterbury University, and Nalayini Davies, who is President of the Royal Astronomical Society of New Zealand.

The AAA website at gives more details and accepts on-line registrations.

AAA gives immersive courses over 2½ days for anyone who wants to be inspired by the beauty of the night sky and wants to learn more about the stars and how to observe them using binoculars or a small telescope. Professor John Hearnshaw said that the course will offer an intensive programme of talks and practical workshops, including night-time observing, and will have five instructors from New Zealand’s most knowledgeable astronomy and astrotourism experts.

Practical advice on astrophotography and on Maori astronomy and Matariki will be part of the AAA course. The course is for anyone wanting to learn how to appreciate the beauty of the night sky and learn more about the stars. No previous astronomy knowledge was required.

Local astronomy expert, Professor Brian Boyle, will be among the instructors for this event, along with Victoria Campbell, Gareth Davies, Dr Steve Chadwick and Alan Gilmore. The main course venue will be Centennial Court, Alexandra.

AAA will also take the opportunity to take course participants to one of our excellent, nearby dark sky locations fornight-sky observing sessions, in the hope of clear weather for star-gazing.

AAA is very grateful to Winterstellar Charitable Trust for sponsoring this event in Central Otago.


Centennial Court, Alexandra