Haere i mua, i te aroaro o Atutahi.
Go before the rising of the star, Atutahi.
We invite you to join us on our unique stargazing experience. The whakatauki (proverb) above refers to Atutahi (Canopus), the second brightest star of the Carina constellation. Atutahi was the first born child of Ranginui (sky father), and a sign that Winter was on its way. The Southern Skies Stargazing tour takes you on a journey of discovery to learn about the unique celestial features of the Southern sky, while also sharing stories and waiata (songs) about how Māori viewed the night sky.
The Otago peninsula coastline provides a clear and breath-taking view of the night sky, along with a magical backdrop of coastal bird calls echoing across Hoopers inlet. In the right conditions, this rural coastal area is a prime viewing location for the Southern Lights, Aurora Australis.
Our guides will point out celestial points of significance that can be viewed with the naked eye. You can also make use of our Skywatcher telescope (with a maximum practical magnification of 200x ) for a closer look. Listen to stories detailing Māori myths of creation, of how Te Ao Marama – the world of light, the world as we know it, emerged. Learn about how Māori relied on tātai arorangi (detailed astronomical knowledge) to navigate the ocean, plant crops, and harvest kaimoana (seafood).
Enjoy Māori manaakitanga (hospitality) with a light supper and hot beverage. Sit back, relax and be enchanted.
Book this tour now or buy a gift card if you want to choose a date later. Just use the handy calendar on the side of this page.
A night beneath the stars
Venus! Looking stunning
Zero gravity chairs!
The stunning Milky Way
Sky Watcher Telescope
Hereweka in the still of the night