June 2004
Southern Africa
Venus Transit & Southern Skies
Trip Information

Updated 10/28/2003

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  Southern Night Skies Observing Extension

Southern night sky observing will be done from Tivoli Farm*, an established astronomical observing "lodge" in Namibia at the edge of the Kalahari desert where the sky is very clear, dark, and dry. These may be the darkest skies you will ever see!

This trip extension will be after the Venus transit event to maximize moonless observing hours. The moon will be a waning crescent, at 39% on the first observing night, and 13% on the last observing night. This time of the year is optimal for seening the southern limits of the Milky Way. It will be highest during the evening hours, and weather in Namibia is very good at this time of the year.


  • Extension dates: June 9 (Wed.) to June 18 (Friday).

  • Departure for Atlanta, GA: Friday, June 18th from Windhoek, Namibia, via Johannesburg, S.A., Probable time of departure would be that SAA flight at 5:10 PM, arriving in Atlanta the next AM, June 19th, at 8:00 AM.

  • Estimated cost of the extension: $750, including
    • Hotel accomodations - two nights in Windhoek, Namibia, and 7 nights at Tivoli Farms.
    • Transfers (exact costs not known at this time)
    • Round-trip flight between Windhoek, Namibia and Johannesburg, South Africa


* See additional photos of Tivoli Farm from the German "Spiegel Team" (Volker Wendel and Bernd Flach-Wilken) which takes southern sky astrophotos from Tivoli Farm.

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