We noticed that you're using an unsupported browser. The TripAdvisor website may not display properly.
We support the following browsers:
Windows: Internet Explorer, Mozilla Firefox, Google Chrome. Mac: Safari.

Observatory Museum

10 Bathurst Street, Grahamstown, South Africa
(046) 622 2312
Improve this listing
Ranked #3 of 15 attractions in Grahamstown
Type: History Museums, Observatories/ Planetariums
Owner description: This odd house is an eclectic melange of architectural styles, the whimsy of amateur astronomer Henry Carter Galpin. Locals would set their watches by... more » Owner description: This odd house is an eclectic melange of architectural styles, the whimsy of amateur astronomer Henry Carter Galpin. Locals would set their watches by the time on Galpin’s clock tower. « less
Write a Review

17 reviews from our community

Visitor rating
    7
    8
    1
    0
    1
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • Any
English first
Paternoster, South Africa
Top Contributor
63 reviews 63 reviews
16 attraction reviews
50 helpful votes 50 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed January 29, 2014 via mobile

The camera obscura is the highlight and a must see. Objected though to the way a tin was produced at the end of the presentation for donations. Surely the staff are paid ? The museum is choc full of interesting Victorian exhibits but they now need an upgrade on their presentation. The house and the garden also needs TLC .

Was this review helpful? Yes
Lagos, Nigeria
Top Contributor
79 reviews 79 reviews
22 attraction reviews
119 helpful votes 119 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed December 24, 2013

The camera obscura is facinating as is the way they used to set the Grahamstown time. All the rooms provide a sense of the early years of Grahamstown with little interesting facts thrown in for interest.

Was this review helpful? Yes 1
auckland
Reviewer
3 reviews 3 reviews
1 helpful vote 1 helpful vote
4 of 5 stars Reviewed December 19, 2013

The town had a lot to offer as a tourist and we found it very tidy/ save as the people were very friendly. People willing to help you if you get lost but over all places easy to find

Was this review helpful? Yes
Grahamstown, South Africa
Contributor
17 reviews 17 reviews
4 attraction reviews
6 helpful votes 6 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed November 25, 2013

Worth a visit and the curators are so friendly and happy to have visitors pop by. The camera obscura is the highlight for sure as is the visit to this Victorian style building that used to belong to the local watchmaker.

Was this review helpful? Yes
Darwin
Contributor
20 reviews 20 reviews
5 attraction reviews
22 helpful votes 22 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed October 19, 2013

I loved this quirky little museum and the 'real' sense you got of how people would have lived there back in the 1800's. The camera obscura was fascinating; I suppose in a way it was the world's first 'reality show' where people could spy on one another's activities?! The museum staff were friendly and chatty and we spent a very... More

Was this review helpful? Yes
Eastern Cape, South Africa
2 reviews
4 of 5 stars Reviewed July 30, 2013

The Observatory is worthwhile for the novelty of the 'camera obscura' which gives you a reflected view of the whole of central Grahamstown -- for a low price. The science behind the camera obscura it is interesting; watching pedestrians and spotting landmark sites around town is good fun! The rest of the museum is a bit 'olde-world' i.e. glass display... More

Was this review helpful? Yes
Port Elizabeth, Eastern Cape, South Africa
Contributor
13 reviews 13 reviews
7 attraction reviews
2 helpful votes 2 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed May 20, 2013

Amazing technology from years back Interesting to see it actually work Interesting museum with many reminders of early settle life

Was this review helpful? Yes
Grahamstown, South Africa
Contributor
18 reviews 18 reviews
8 attraction reviews
11 helpful votes 11 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed December 12, 2012

You have to visit on a sunny day so you can enjoy the views on the top - there is a really nice surprise I don't want to spoil. I take all my visitors there. The museum itself is old

Was this review helpful? Yes
Grahamstown, South Africa
Contributor
18 reviews 18 reviews
13 helpful votes 13 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed September 13, 2012

Unassuming museum with fabulous camera obscura working with lenses and mirrors. At first it seems odd to see the town projected in colour on the cement disk. Some other oddities like other victorian technology and a quaint tableau of lifelike doll-figures in the Victorian kitchen in the basement.

Was this review helpful? Yes
Mossel Bay, South Africa
Top Contributor
90 reviews 90 reviews
76 attraction reviews
74 helpful votes 74 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed August 30, 2012

The main attraction of this museum is the very interesting Victorian camera Obscura. We had to pay R10 and went with a guide to show us the camera. It is really amazing to see. The guide gave us a 360 degree tour of most sights in the town while standing in the darkened room by pulling ropes and moving the... More

Was this review helpful? Yes

Travelers who viewed Observatory Museum also viewed

 

Been to Observatory Museum? Share your experiences!

Write a Review Add Photos & Videos

Owners: What's your side of the story?

If you own or manage Observatory Museum, register now for free tools to enhance your listing, attract new reviews, and respond to reviewers.

Manage your listing