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Image / Living / Culture

Stargazing around Ireland: three outdoor events that are out of this world

by Erin Lindsay
04th Sep 2020

Love to get lost in the night sky? Ireland can be one of the best places in the world for stargazing — here are the best ways to enjoy it

While indoor activities may be largely off the cards for a while longer, there’s still time to enjoy the great outdoors in Ireland. Stargazing, whether you’re a novice or an expert, is a lovely way to spend an evening. You’re in the thick of nature, experiencing the magic of the cosmos, and if you join a group or event, you’re doing it with like-minded people who may just become new friends.

If you’re still looking for ideas on how to spend your staycation, some of the country’s best stargazing events might be what you’re missing. Here are three of our favourites around Ireland.

Astronomy Ireland’s Star-B-Q in Roundwood, Co. Wicklow

Taking place on Saturday, September 12, Astronomy Ireland’s Star-B-Q is exactly what it says on the tin: take a look at the beautiful stars while indulging in some BBQ food. There’ll be a rocket launch, fantastic lectures, and the opportunity to see the stars through powerful telescopes. There’s no need for prior astronomy knowledge or any equipment — just bring yourself and your love for the skies. All the details on their website here.

Galactic Ireland in Co. Wicklow

Another fantastic option for those looking to explore Ireland’s Ancient East is Galactic Ireland, one of the country’s most popular stargazing experiences. Book a two-hour tour with the crew in Kilmacanogue (near the Sugarloaf) and enjoy a completely immersive experience, with a lesson on the basics of astronomy, before deep-diving into the cosmos (with tea and snacks provided). When you book your tour, Galactic Ireland will take a look at the forecast for the coming days and recommend the clearest evening to experience the stars.

Terra Firma’s Walking and Stargazing Weekend at Knockranny House, Westport, Co. Mayo

The fantastic team at Terra Firma has organised a number of upcoming weekend events in Westport to stargaze in some of the most beautiful skies in the country. Staying at the Knockranny House Hotel on the Friday evening, you can then attend the guided hill walk on Saturday morning above the Glenlaur valley, with stunning views of Croagh Patrick, with the Maumturks and Twelve Bens in the distance. That evening, after dinner, you will venture out to enjoy the dark skies of Mayo, where the local Seanchaí will keep you entertained with folklore and songs. Prices from €229pp, including two night’s stay, breakfast, and dinner on one evening.

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