Stargazing For Lovers

romantic things to do-stargazing

When you are searching for ways to be romantic or ideas for a date  it would be foolish to over-look one of the most timeless, romantic and inexpensive past-times of all. Star-gazing!

Star-gazing is humbling and inspiring. A look up from time- to- time reminds us that we all share the same planet and we all live under the same skies. Above us is a free, fascinating and never-ending show! You can find out the best places for star-gazing in the UK here, and the best places in the USA here, although at the right time of year you can do it pretty much anywhere.

Star-gazing can make for a very romantic evening, especially if you do a little research before-hand so you can impress your lover with a little knowledge of Astronomy. After-all Astronomy is a science within everyone’s grasp, so a little swatting will go a long way!

You don’t really need to have any equipment at all; although some decent star-gazing binoculars would make things more interesting. All you really need is a blanket to snuggle up on or in! Maybe some snacks. A lovely hot flask to share, and a sky-chart (planisphere). (You could use an app but the light will interfere with your night-vision so you should keep mobile devices off for at least 20 minutes before you begin, and for the duration).

If you have reasonably dark skies you can see across 2.5 million light years of space! At this distance you will find The Andromeda Galaxy which is the most distant point in space that you can see with the naked eye. It looks like this: Andromeda Galaxy Poster. Impressive huh?

To truly impress your date, do a little research and if you are in the UK check out the BBC’s Stargazing Live Site where you can find a star guide and download star maps free. Otherwise an excellent book to help you really look like you know your stuff  is Philip’s Guide to the Night Sky: A Guided Tour of the Stars and Constellations, Sir Patrick Moore.

If you are in USA you’ll find everything you need here!

To be really romantic go out around Valentine’s day and seek out the affectionately nicknamed ‘Valentine’s day star’. Actually named Betelgeuse. Betelgeuse is a red super-giant star as wide as Jupiter’s orbit around the sun.

It’s also a variable star, which means that its atmosphere is expanding and contracting, causing its light to pulse on a semi-regular basis, on average about once every six years.

In other words, the star is like a huge, red beating heart in the sky. It shines red even to the naked eye. Sadly Betelgeuse will not live long. Stars that size use up their fuel pretty fast so will go supernova sometime in the next century or so.

Finally, to be really really romantic you can name a star after your loved one. You can either give the complete gift yourself, which contains: A welcome letter, an explanation of how the gift works, gift registration form, star details sheet, a history of stars leaflet, a leaflet with facts and figures about stars, a stars and astronomy booklet and a constellations souvenir poster. Or you can surprise your lover and do it for them and just present them with the star deed certificate on the night. Does it get more romantic than that? I don’t think so!

Happy star-gazing!

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