Aoraki Mackenzie International Dark Sky Reserve
Dark Sky Reserve is an Astro Tourism business which is dedicated to the richness in astronomy and science. We are firm believers that astronomy above and surounding areas within the Mackenzie country is for everyone forever.
In 2012, Aoraki Mackenzie International Dark Sky Reserve was established as one of eight dark sky reserves in the world. Inside the reserve is Mt John Observatory. Rising 300 m above Lake Tekapo, Mt John is operated by the University of Canterbury. Following site surveys in early 1960s, Mt John was selected as the best site in New Zealand because it has high number of clear nights, is remote from bright lights, the air is transparent and steady, and it is close to roading and electricity.
The Observatory is operated by the Physics Department of the University, astronomers from the Observatory and research laboratories in Australia, North America, Asia and Europe, who use the facilities for astronomy and astrophysics scientific investigations. Until the end of 1983, the Observatory shared the hilltop with a satellite-tracking station.
Access to Mt John is via a toll road. All proceeds go toward maintianing the road.
Lake Tekapo 7945, New Zealand