I am not super interested in astronomy. Yeah, sorry. (I hear a lot of you saying boo now). I love looking at the stars and thinking what can be out there. It reminds me how wonderful the universe is and how small I am and my problems are in consideration to everything that exists.
But my husband has a different story. He is crazy about astronomy. So crazy that we have 3 telescopes at home!
When we got the invitation to ESO Supernova Planetarium & Visitor Centre Blogger Event I ran to him and told him immediately, he went crazy! I was excited too because I love Munich and I am happy to have another important facility in this city.
Let me tell you what ESO is. ESO stands for The European Southern Observatory
which is the foremost intergovernmental astronomy organisation in Europe with its 15 member states and the world’s most productive ground-based astronomical observatory by far. (read more here
This blog post is not about ESO but about the ESO Supernova Planetarium & Visitor Centre (I will call ESO Supernova from now on) which is is a cutting-edge astronomy centre for the public and an educational facility, located at the site of the ESO Headquarters which is in Garching. The centre hosts the largest tilted planetarium in Germany, Austria and Switzerland and an interactive exhibition, sharing the fascinating world of astronomy and ESO to inspire coming generations to appreciate and understand the Universe around us.
Arriving to ESO Supernova was was easy, we got on the U6 towards Garching Forschungszentrum, got off at the last station and walked less than 10 minutes and voila, we were in front of the building.
The building is also something special. It symbolises a close binary star system with one star transferring mass to its companion. This leads to the heavier star exploding as a supernova.
The first part of our visit was inside the great planetarium. First we printed our tickets with the booking code we got from our online booking at the ticketing machine before entering the planetarium (which is a regular process if you will visit it). We got headsets from the reception as the show we were going to watch was in German. (there is always translation to English if the content is in German or vice versa)
The ESO Supernova Coordinator Tanja Johnston welcomed us and told us about the program. Then we learned about the facility and ESO through presentations of various ESO team members. We learned about the educational offers for schools and teachers, the upcoming events in ESO Supernova and the last but not the least about the planetarium.
That part took my breath away. The videos of the ESO telescopes in Chile, the sky and the universe were mesmerising. The tilted planetarium is magic, you feel you are moving with the objects that are moving. A-ma-zing!
I was so moved by the scenes that tears fell from my eyes and I had goose bumps! (below is the video that made me cry)
There are various shows/ films in the program of the Planetarium, most of them are already booked out. Check the program here, and book your ticket for free. (Entrance and all the offers are free of charge in 2018)
After the show was over, we had a tour of the exhibition which was really interesting. The information on displays is understandable by all ages and levels of knowledge and the exhibition is very interactive. You can see how eclipses occur, test different weights on different planets, touch meteors, make your own telescope and see real time views from the telescopes in Chile.
You don’t only learn about the universe,planets and stars but also people behind the scenes, the astronomers working at ESO, which made me extremely excited…I loved listening to their stories about how they chose astronomy as a profession. There were also short documentaries about life at the Paranal Observatory.
We spent more than 4 hours at the ESO Supernova and we went back again another time for another show. I think I might visit it again! There is also an upcoming concert that looked really interesting.
If you consider watching a show at the amazing planetarium book your ticket now, it is selling out so quick!
The ESO Supernova is open from Wednesday to Sunday in the following hours:
Wednesdays – Fridays: 9:00 – 17:00
Saturdays – Sundays: 12:00 – 17:00
Clear skies as they say it at the ESO Supernova!