Depending on how old you are and where you live, you might have looked up into the night when you were a child and been amazed at how so many stars had been crammed into a single sky, and wondered how the night could be so dark. Even if the stars seem to have mostly vanished above Europe’s towns and cities, the night skies above La Palma are as dark and as full of stars as in your best childhood memories.
A holiday on La Palma gives star gazers the chance to view the sky from a unique perspective. La Palma is internationally recognised as being one of the best places in the world for observing the universe, thanks to the lack of light pollution, clear skies and the high number of useful observation hours a year. La Palma is near the equator but far from tropical storms, so you can observe the entire northern hemisphere and part of the southern hemisphere from this single location.
Some of the astronomy facilities in the Canary islands are of major international importance, and La Palma has the Roque de los Muchachos Observatory, home to one of the most extensive fleets of telescopes to be found anywhere in the world. The Observatory is open for daytime visits and if you can arrange a visit here: www.iac.es
You’ll find several companies in the Islands that organise walks in mountain locations where you can view the universe. They have professional guides to show you the highlights of the night sky and tell you about the stars you’re viewing.