Visiting Boyden as an international or local tourist
Unique experience
Boyden Observatory in the Free State Province of South Africa gives international tourists the chance to experience the region's excellent climate and appreciate the dark night sky from a unique and quiet location in the heart of South Africa.
The Observatory has an auspicious history dating back from 1889 in South America and from 1927 in South Africa. It now serves as an educational hub for the public and schools in central South Africa. Professional research is performed on the third largest telescope in South Africa, as all was robotic telescopes. It boasts century-old astronomical equipment, with an air of proud historical heritage.
The city of Bloemfontein is a hub situated in a vast hinterland of dry veld. Its crispy clear skies afford darkness unimaginable from the other large cities in South Africa. Its winter months (May to July) has almost no cloud coverage - most international tourists cannot believe the intense blue colour of the sky!
Boyden Observatory is situated about 26 km outside the city of Bloemfontein to the east, near the airport and great accommodation facilities. The Boyden hill's natural surroundings gives you the feeling of being in the wild. A vast number of bird and inspect species can be found as well as indigenous plant life. Many game reserves can also be found in a 1 hour drive radius around Boyden.

The hill on which Boyden lies is situated alongside a vacation resort, (Mazelspoort) with big swimming pools, chalets and other entertainment facilities. The Modderriver which passes at its foot provides a breathtaking view of the surrounding area. The typical Free State plains with the many koppies are also visible as far as the eye can see.

Bloemfontein is a tranquil city built on its cultural vibrance and academic institutions as well as on its centralized administrative function. Light pollution for Boyden is not a major problem yet and heavy industries are almost non-existent! The city is situated in the middle of the country - an easy vantage point for further tours to other parts of South Africa (1 hour flight from Johannesburg, 2 hours from Cape Town).
A huge quantity of fascinating deep sky objects awaits the international tourist in the southern skies. The Crux-Vela-Carina area is a treasure chest of objects, including Eta Carina, the Jewelbox Cluster, NGC 3532 etc. The Large and Small Magellanic Clouds are also a breathtaking pair in the nightsky.

Phone Dawie van Jaarsveldt on +27 +51 401 2561 or send him an email at vJaarsDP@ufs.ac.za
Contact details

Contact Braam van Zyl at +27 051- 436 7555 (h) if you would like to become a member of the
Friends of Boyden, or email jalvzyl@mweb.co.za.

More information and costs
Download application form.

Website information
This website: www.assabfn.co.za/friendsofboyden
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