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Ad Astra La Palma

El Paso, Spain
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About Ad Astra La Palma
Ad Astra is a latin locution that means "to the stars". Our purpose is to honor this name, bringing Astronomy closer to the general public in a pleasant and an entertaining way. Our company has a team of Starlight Guides and Astronomers with a broad experience in scientific popularization. We have advanced and powerful astronomical telescopes for Moon, planet and deep-sky object observation, such as nebulae, star clusters and galaxies. Additionally, we have an astronomical laser pointer and multimedia resources to identify the main constellations, and special filters to watch solar surface phenomena (sunspots, filaments and prominences). We will take you to the borders of the Universe on a fascinating journey where you will discover the mysteries of the Cosmos. We will answer all your questions, doubts and curiosities about Astronomy. What are you waiting for?
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Tomshake wrote a review Oct 2020
Slough11 contributions7 helpful votes
I will never forget my Ad Astra star gazing trip. Every time I look up at the night sky in the UK, I think back to how much better and magical it was in La Palma...like someone had thrown a load of white Christmas tree lights all over the inky black sky. Arriving at LLano del Jable, I almost felt like I was meeting up with a secret cult (of star gazers) who were going to worship at the altar to the heavens in the dead of night! You won't be seeing Hubble quality images through the 9.25 reflector telescope, but you will get a good taste of interesting night sky objects. We viewed the star cluster M35 which looked like a holographic myriad of clustered bright dots suspended in some invisible treacle. We looked at the cotton-wool like nucleus of our neighbouring galaxy Andromeda (you won't see the spiral arms as that requires a long exposure time). Uranus was an ominous pale blue-green disc lurking at the edge of our solar system. Venus was a little disappointing detail wise - simply a brilliant circular point of light, but I expect Saturn and Jupiter would be impressive had they been present. We also looked at the Seven Sister's nebula which had bright dots (new stars) forming out of a hazy gas cloud. The visit does give you a deep sense of wonder and connection with the universe. Our guide, Elena, being a professional astronomer herself, was EXTREMELY knowledgeable, friendly and commented fluently in English and Spanish so was a star in her own right! Do dress up very warmly in winter, plus a thermos of hot drink is a good idea. And give yourself ample time to navigate the winding and sometimes spooky road up to LLano del Jable. You may find that younger children get a little restless waiting between telescope viewing opportunities, so I'd suggest this trip is more suitable for teens or adults. All in all, thoroughly recommended.
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Date of experience: February 2020
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JABDover wrote a review Feb 2020
Dover, United Kingdom54 contributions55 helpful votes
A visit to the international observatory at the Roque de Los Muchachos is a must. The scenery is amazing, and I would also recommend a tour of one of the telescopes; this can be booked through the company Ad Astra La Palma for a very reasonable cost of €9 per person (not including transport). Our tour guide, Sheila Crosby, was excellent, and has written a most interesting book on the subject. If you want to extend your astronomical experience, you could also book a night-time stargazing tour through the same company. Until the new visitor centre is opened, make sure you take a packed lunch with you to the Roque de Los Muchachos as there are no facilities.
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Date of experience: January 2020
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darcy428 wrote a review Nov 2019
Helensburgh, United Kingdom6 contributions
We booked the VIP event for my husband's birthday. He is a keen astronomer and the idea of having an event just for the two of us was an absolute treat. Eugenia was our guide and we arrived just before sunset to observe the sun and then whilst we waited for the planets and stars to appear we had a lovely glass of local wine with local biscuits. The telescope is brilliant and we could even see Saturn with its ring! Eugenia really is an expert and gave a mini presentation on her i pad. We then had some super photos taken which were e mailed to us the next day. What a memory! Thank you Eugenia!
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Date of experience: November 2019
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Tom Samson wrote a review Oct 2019
Rochdale, United Kingdom1 contribution
Our kids are really into astronomy, so we decided to go to La Palma, as it is famous for its Big Telescope and clean night sky. We went to different star gazing companies, but this one seemed to be the best choice... and it was! We had a lovely evening and we learnt a lot. The guide was especially attentive to our teenage sons and she definitely knew what she was talking about. I recommend Ad Astra 100%! Thanks for an unforgettable experience.
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Date of experience: October 2019
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JABDover wrote a review Dec 2018
Dover, United Kingdom54 contributions55 helpful votes
Most reviews for this company on Tripadvisor are for stargazing. However, their day-time observatory tours are also excellent. It is easy to book in advance on the website, and ticketing is very straightforward. This visit is well worth doing if you are interested in astronomy. We had a guided tour of the Gran Telescopio Canarias, which lasted about 90 minutes, really good value for €9 per person. Our guide, Sheila Crosby, was very informative, having worked there herself, and is bi-lingual English & Spanish; she also speaks German. You do have to get to the observatories yourselves, by hire-car or taxi, but the journey is an interesting way to view more of the island. We chose a different company for our night-time stargazing tour as the location was a long-way from our hotel in Los Cancajos, and Ad Astra La Palma does not offer transport. However, given the efficiency of booking our observatory tour, I’m sure you would not be disappointed.
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Date of experience: December 2018
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