Stargazing: Cederberg Observatory

Only open on Saturday evenings - weather permitting. br / br / Not open over full moon. br / br / Look out for the notice at our office.

In the early 1980's a British astronomer named Peter Mack, who was working for the SAAO (South African Astronomical Observatory), visited the Cederberg and saw its potential as a base for an amateur observatory.

He obtained the use of a piece of land on the farm Dwarsrivier, courtesy of the then owner, Oom Pollie Nieuwoudt. The first piers for the telescopes were built in 1984. A storeroom and a dome for a 16" telescope were constructed early in 1986 and the site was used for observations of Halley's comet later that year.

In 1988 Peter Mack created a partnership with five amateur astronomers from Cape Town and a constitution was drawn up, officially establishing the Cederberg Observatory. An accommodation block with cooking facilities was completed in 1989 and subsequent work at the site has seen the erection of an ablution block, a storeroom, a second dormitory and a roll-off roof structure to house a 16" telescope. As a final luxury, Eskom provided power in the mid-1990s, rendering redundant the old solar panels, batteries and a rather noisy generator.

: Approximately two hours, starting at 20h00
Cost: Donation
Enquiries: Sanddrif holiday resort, or (Afrikaans) Chris: (English), or visit the website:
Note: Only open on Saturday evenings - weather permitting. Not open over full moon. Look out for the notice at our office.

Permits and advice can be collected at the office.