A PASSION FOR THE HEAVENS is nothing new, and people have been travelling to far-flung destinations worldwide in the hope of seeing some of nature´s celestial attractions.
But “star tourists” need not travel to obscure locales, and one of natures greatest spectacles can be clearly seen here in Spain.
The Milky Way is one of natures largest wonders, and at 100,000 light-years across you would think that our own galaxy would be visible just about anywhere.
In fact, light pollution and climatic conditions mean that the galactic centre is invisible from most populated areas around the world.
Fortunately, Spain´s clear and mostly cloudless skies, combined with low night time luminescence, offer plenty of opportunities to find a great view of our galaxy.
During the summer months, the northern hemisphere is perfectly aligned to view the galactic core, revealing a milky band of almost 300 billion stars.
Where is the best place on the Costa Blanca to see the Milky Way?
As it turns out, just like our planet, our galaxy has seasons.
The “Milky Way Season” runs through from April until the end of October each year, and during these months the Costa Blanca night sky reveals countless points of light.
Larger beaches and even golf courses offer an immediately accessible viewing location, far enough away from sources of light.
The image that headlines this article was taken on the Mirador del Cabo gateway, along the coast adjacent to Santa Pola.
The Island of Tabarca offers even greater isolation, and likely one of the best places to guarantee a spectacular galactic view (photo above).
“The “Milky Way Season” runs through from April until the end of October each year, and during these months the Costa Blanca night sky reveals countless points of light”.
And thanks to low levels of light pollution, even populated centres like the ancient coastal city of Cartagena offer stargazers an opportunity to see the galaxy.
There´s no need to span the breadth of Chile´s Atacama Desert, and a great view of our galaxy can be found far closer to home.
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Photo credit: Alexander Pichlmayr