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Thursday, January 26, 2012


Since science these days is cool in school, I'm inspired by Explorers Astronomy Tours’ brand new selection of family-focused galactic getaways.

Right up my street, the tour company want to encourage families to see and do something spectacular on their travels. It's a welcome break from the standard fly and flop fortnight at another predictable resort.

Their holidays take in both the northern lights and desert stargazing. All tours are accompanied by Explorers’ resident Galactic Rangers who provide their expert insight into the celestial activity.

As well as increasing the number of departures for its sell-out tour to the sought-after aurora borealis, Explorers has introduced a 5-day family-only Northern Lights holiday, departing February.

David Phillips, Operations & Planning Manager at Explorers, told me:
“With northern light forecasts continuing to suggest that the next couple of years will provide prime viewing conditions, it’s wonderful to see how this natural phenomenon has captured the nations’ imagination... the sky’s the limit’ perfectly sums up the potential for incorporating astronomy into year-round adventure holidays all across the world. Whilst this November’s Total Solar Eclipse in Australia is sure to prove another ‘must-see’ experience, we’ve also introduced new 2012 stargazing trips that take advantage of the wonderful desert skies of destinations such as Jordan, Turkey and Morocco.”

Here's a preview of what's on offer...

Glaciers, Geysers & Northern Lights – Astronomy Kids 5 days from £1,099 ($1,724) adult & £1,039 ($1,630) child - For the first time, families can now explore the rugged beauty of Iceland and watch the Icelandic skies come alive at night with an astronomy expert on-hand to guide them through the light display. For children aged eight and above, the tour will take families away from pollution zones to get a good view of the phenomenon. Departures 14 February 2012 & 12 February 2013

Turkey Adventure & Astronomy 8 days from £1,429 ($2,242) pp - Taking advantage of the new moon, families will camp under the stars and watch the sky come alive as educational planetarium shows entertain and educate families with children aged 12 upwards. The clear skies of Cappadocia and its surreal scenery will allow holidaymakers to view the planets and constellations in a whole new light. Departures 21 July 2012 & 7 August 2013.

Sinai Desert & Stars 8 days from £1,069 ($1,677) pp - Incorporating a desert jeep safari, families will be whisked off on an Egyptian adventure which combines all the action of the desert with the wow factor of the stars, planets and Perseids meteor shower. During the holiday, families will be treated to two nights of stargazing hosted by resident ‘Galactic Ranger’ and acclaimed astronomer Dr John Mason. Minimum age 12. Departures 11 August 2012 & 28 July 2013.

Petra & Desert Sky at Night 7 days from £1,429 ($2,242) pp - For an experience to capture the essence of the Wadi Rum desert, families will experience life in a Bedouin Camp before sleeping under a blanket of stars. The private use of a 16-inch telescope will give children an even closer look at the constellations and the Milky Way, providing them with an unforgettable hands-on learning experience. Other highlights include exploring the lost world of Petra, floating in the Dead Sea and a 4WD desert adventure. Departures 17 August 2012 & 24 August 2013.

To find out more visit Explorers at www.astronomytours.co.uk

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