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Maui Stargazing

Kula, HI, USA
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About Maui Stargazing
Maui Stargazing offers sunset and stargazing tours within Haleakala National Park for a science-based telescope adventure. We meet at the Kula Lodge and you hop aboard our luxury Mercedes Sprinter passenger van for the ultimate, off-the-grid visitor activity on Maui - and it's fun for all ages! Haleakala is among the best places on Planet Earth to observe celestial objects! At the 10,000 foot elevation, Haleakala Summit reaches above the clouds and is well away from light-polluted resorts. Learn the wonders of the night sky from an astronomy expert. We use the largest portable telescope on Maui, a 12-inch aperture Dobsonian, allowing the best views of deep sky objects including the visible planets, nebulae, galaxies, and star clusters. We supply all the warm outerwear you will need to stay warm, as well as hot beverages and snacks. Observing sites offer restrooms and shelter from wind.
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Hours Today: 8:00 AM - 4:00 PM
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“...and I must go” wrote a review Mar 2020
47 contributions6 helpful votes
We went with another couple and loved it! It is something I would bring my kids to see too. Jan does a great job! The scenery before dark was beautiful, and the star gazing was awesome! Warm clothes, warm drinks and comfortable seating were provided.
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Date of experience: October 2019
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Response from JanRoberson, Owner at Maui Stargazing
Responded Mar 23, 2020
Thanks Andimustgo!
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Elena wrote a review Mar 2020
Mountain View, California1 contribution
Seeing stars, planets, galaxies from an elevation of 9000 + feet is awesome! Jan ran a great tour: she’s knowledgeable, friendly and efficient. Tour starts well before sunset so we enjoyed the scenery and crater on the drive up Haleakala. Then we watched the sunset from above the clouds. As the sky darkened, Jan pointed out visible objects in the sky and through the large telescope. Wow--what a great view! Group size of 11 people was perfect. The van and all the warm clothes were clean and comfortable. Our family group had one teen. She had a homework assignment and Jan's detailed list of what we saw really helped her out! If you are looking for something you can only do in Maui, then seeing the stars from the top of the volcano is it!
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Date of experience: February 2020
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Response from JanRoberson, Owner at Maui Stargazing
Responded Mar 15, 2020
Many thanks for the kind review! We live what we do. Aloha Jan
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Maritalblitz08 wrote a review Mar 2020
Chicago89 contributions1 helpful vote
Why a seven star rating? First of all, Jan runs a five star tour. 289 out of 328 reviewers agree. I also feel, I need to give the tour an a additional two stars to refute/clarify some points given in a three star review. First of all, the tour is not overpriced. Jan’s tour was $15-$20 more than the NCL sunset tour. My wife took the ship’s tour (not interested in astronomy) and got to see the sunset. Then she was immediately taken back to the ship. We, on the Maui Stargazing tour, stayed on the top of the crater for an additional ninety minutes. In those ninety minutes we received an Astronomy 101 lesson. Jan guided us (with a telescope and a laser pointer) through sightings of planets, stars, clusters of stars, galaxies and nebulae. As for the cold, it should have been expected and not distracting. After all, you are at an elevation of 10,000 feet at the rim. An additional note concerning the weather: For the NCL sunset tour, my wife had a winter coat. (Yes, we had the foresight to bring warm clothes to Hawaii for this one evening.) NCL provided no extra warm clothes. Jan, besides her warning to wear warm clothes, provided us with winter leggings and a winter coat. We were also given a hot beverage to help keep us warm. As for the road, it was probably not that difficult to drive on the way up. I doubt, however, that many people would be comfortable driving down the road in complete darkness and with areas of patchy fog (which came up rather unexpectedly). Thank goodness we had a driver with years of experience driving that road in the dark. Finally, the reviewer said Jan’s tour was a “scam” because one could see (but not learn!) just as many stars at sea level. All I can say is “come on.” At sea level one has light pollution as well as atmospheric pollution to contend with. Also, there are clouds to contend with if viewing from sea level. Think of it: Why are all the land based observatories built at high altitudes? I’m sorry I took the tone I did in writing this review. I never responded to another reviewer’s review before. I just felt that I had to clarify the negative reviewer’s statements. Stick with the 289 out of 318 reviewers that graded Jan’s tour five stars. One negative point I feel I should bring up is the fact that if you are an NCL passenger you will need to pay for a cab or Uber to and from the town of Kula. I suggest you go on the Cruise Critic Roll Call for your cruise to see if there is anyone else interested in the Maui Stargazing Tour and would share the cost of the cab.
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Date of experience: February 2020
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Response from JanRoberson, Owner at Maui Stargazing
Responded Mar 23, 2020
Wow thanks for the props! We do our best to keep guests warm and entertained. We add the educational part for those who are curious and uninitiated into the intricacies of the cosmos.
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wandering-until- wrote a review Mar 2020
Elmhurst, Illinois46 contributions15 helpful votes
I booked this trip and was very excited to go. Unfortunately, I went on a morning snorkel trip and was not feeling well - I get motion sick easily. I texted Jan to let her know we couldn't attend. It was a late cancellation - only 90 min before we were to meet at the Kula lodge. So, I totally accept my part in this. I just couldn't go up a mountain when I was already sick. I fully expected to not receive a refund - and on this Jan did not disappoint. I cancelled late - no refund. The reason for the low rating is because she had texted the group earlier in the day to tell us that she would provide a partial refund if the night sky didn't allow for star gazing. When I asked if that partial refund would extend to us as well - because I was a full paying customer - Jan said "No, you cancelled too late". That I don't understand at all. Why would you deny a partial refund to a fully paid customer when you would extend that refund to everyone else? I do not know if the there was good star gazing that night - so I don't know if anyone else received a partial refund. I certainly did not.
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Date of experience: March 2020
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Response from JanRoberson, Owner at Maui Stargazing
Responded Mar 9, 2020
If I receive enough notice and I can fill the vacated seats I give a full refund.
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ATMKRM wrote a review Mar 2020
Kenosha, Wisconsin1 contribution
The view on Haleakala is world class. On a clear night, which I was blessed to have, you will see thousands of stars even without a telescope and Jan's 12 inch Dobsonian Reflector made the experience even more memorable. In a session that lasted just over an hour, we got to see objects as ordinary as the planet Venus to as distant as galaxies like M31, and M82, to as amazing as the stellar nursery of the Great Nebula of Orion. Jan is an excellent guide, and handles her 'scope like the seasoned pro that she is. Working with a finder only, instead of a computer, we never had to wait more than a minute for her to line up an object to view. Between setup, waiting for sunset and then full dark, and the session, expect to spend about 90 minutes in the stargazing part of the session. And yes, it can get cold, even with the winter gear and hot beverage she provides, but it is a once in a lifetime view from one of the world's best vantages for stargazing, it is definitely worth it! The cost may seem pretty high, but when you factor in the drive up (over an hour there and back on winding roads with no streetlights) park admission (usually $15 per person), winter gear, and the use of a good-sized scope), it is a very good deal. Add to that access to Jan's knowledge of the heavens, and the preliminary stops you get to see the mountain peak and crater, and it is a definite must-see stop for anyone travelling to Maui with any interest in Astronomy. Final note here about the character of Jan. I lost my glasses on my own recent tour. Not only did she look for them, and find them, but she went out of her way to meet me and return them to me. Just shows the sort of person that she is. Highly recommended. I'd give 6 stars if I could!
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Date of experience: February 2020
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Response from JanRoberson, Owner at Maui Stargazing
Responded Mar 7, 2020
Mahalo for your thorough and thoughtful review! It’s our goal to provide a quality experience for our guests. Haleakalā and the night sky full of stars, customer care, great guests, and a science-based experience all go into a great night! Please join us again for a tour of the cosmos. Aloha
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