Private and amateur observatories
This observatory, situated 250km by road north of Cape Town, is operated by seven amateur astronomers. It has excellent dark skies and public open nights are held every Saturday except at or near Full Moon (weather permitting).
Contact: Mr Chris Forder. Tel: 021-9134200
This Observatory presents general astronomy shows and talks to the youth, public and tourists in South Africa. School and church camps, where astronomy is the main theme, are also held. Located on the R512 (Pelindaba Rd), 20 minutes drive from Sandton or Pretoria enroute to Hartbeespoort Dam and Sun City and within the Cradle of Humankind World Heritage site.
Contact: Paul Ludick or Marhalda Botha. Tel: 082 682 4062
Port Elizabeth Peoples Observatory
The observatory, situated on the corner of Westview Drive and MacFarlane Road, is open to the public on the 1st and 3rd Wednesday of every month and on every Wednesday during December and January. Admission is free, but donations are welcome to help with running costs. Viewing evenings are arranged for groups at other times during the month.
Prince Albert Observatory
This observatory in Market Street, Prince Albert, is open to the public by appointment. Facilities include a 4-inch solar telescope, a 10-inch Meade LX200 and a 16-inch Meade on an equatorial platform.
Further reading: MNASSA Letters, "Prince Albert Town Observatory update"
Rhino and Lion Nature Reserve Observatory
Situated at a dark location at the Wonder Cave, just outside Krugersdorp, Gauteng, in the direction of Pretoria. Nearby is the Sterkfontein cave, where Mrs Ples was found. It is a public observatory that specialises in public and scholastic instruction. Star parties, talks and shows are held on a regular basis.
Space Centre (Port Edward, Natal)
The Space Centre consists of an astronomical museum, with a large collection of telescopes, books, optical equipment, astronomical photographs and posters, as well as a small planetarium seating 80 people. The telescopes include two 10-inch Meades, two 5-inch refractors, and an 8-inch reflector. During the holiday season the Centre is open daily. Bookings can be made at other times.
Contact details: Graham T Geary (tel. 039 311 2891/073 1969694) (e-mail spacecentre21@ hotmail.com). Space Centre, PO Box 267,Port Edward 4295