Go on a journey to outer space from your back garden! - Beautiful Escapes
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Go on a journey to outer space from your back garden!

24th April 2020

This time is so uncertain and tricky for all of us as we try to stay positive while stuck indoors, and even more tricky with little ones to keep entertained! Inspired by the dark skies festival earlier this year in Yorkshire, we thought it would be a perfect opportunity to do a little star gazing from your back gardens, balconies or even just your windows. You can make it a little adventure into outer space without even leaving your house, and also tick off a homeschooling session!

One tiny upside to the current situation is that road taffic is down to 1950s levels and air traffic is much less frequent, resulting in air pollution being significantly reduced. You may have already noticed that on a bright day you can see much farther in the distance than you would normally be able to. This also applies to looking at the night sky!

 

 

With the weather looking mostly clear, dry and mild this weekend we thought it would be the perfect time to gaze up. It might mean a later bedtime for the little ones but we’re sure the rules can be bent for one night!

Here are our top tips for stargazing at home.

Make a space:

  • If you have a garden, make an outside den with picnic blankets or beach towels to give you something to lie down on. You could even pitch a tent in the garden and lay with your heads poking out of the door! Otherwise open a window wide or sit out on your balcony.
  • How about making a flask of hot chocolate and wrapping up some cookies for a snack.
  • Find a pencil and some paper to take outside with you.
  • Turn off all of the lights in your house and garden to reduce light pollution and help you see more.
  • Lay down and look up…

What can you see?

  • You’ll find that your eyes soon adjust to the dark so the longer you look at the sky, the more you will see!
  • Download an app such as Google Sky or Star Walk 2 to your phone or tablet, that will help you identify what stars you can see.
  • Use your pencil and paper to draw the constellations you spot in the sky, you might want a torch to help you!
  • At the moment the planet Venus is quite easy to spot and looks very bright in the sky soon after the sun has set.
  • You might see the comet Atlas moving through the sky, scientists believe it may become faintly visible by the end of April, beginning of May so keep looking!

 

We hope you find a moment of calm and wonder gazing up at the night sky, a small reminder that there is still life outside of our front door and we will one day be able to explore again, though perhaps not quite as far as outer space!

The stars visible in Yorkshire are magnificent, the National Parks have little light pollution and shooting stars can easily be seen. It is a magical experience! If you would like to escape to Yorkshire in the future, after the current restrictions are lifted, you can find our beautiful properties here. All of them have outside space perfect for a little stargazing!

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