Written by Emma Benney
Stop and gaze up to the stars
Stargazing together is deeply romantic, free and, in this over-digitised age of ours, delightfully disconnected – leaving you and your loved one free to reconnect with each other. So pack up your stargazing kit and let Mother Nature take your breath away.
Know your lunar cycles. The skies are darkest before a full moon. Moonless nights are best for spotting meteors and enjoying the magnificence of the Milky Way.
Find the best location: if you can’t get to Bedruthan Steps or a Dark Sky Discovery area, try to get into a rural location, away from city lights. Take a drive into the countryside to find a spot as secluded as possible.
Be prepared: pack a picnic, a blanket and groundsheet if it is wet, a few cushions for extra comfort and plenty of warm clothes. For true romance a bottle of wine or flask of hot chocolate is a must.
Binoculars are handy but optional. Up to 4,000 stars can be seen by the naked eye, or borrow our Swarovski binoculars if you like.
Make sure you have plenty of time. Locating constellations can be hard, but persevere. Astronomy teaches patience, humility and calm.
Bring a map of the night sky. You don’t need any astronomical knowledge to enjoy stargazing, but hunting for constellations can be a big part of your romantic adventure. Find a free, printable night sky map here. Alternatively, you can have some fun making up your own constellations.
What to do
- Check which constellations are visible and plan which ones to look for here.
- Spread out your waterproof ground sheet, lie back, look up and relax. Give your eyes 20 minutes to adjust to the dark, be patient and don’t try too hard. Slowly, very slowly, your eyes will start joining dots together and a planet or constellation, star cluster or even a galaxy will appear to you.
- Remember to wish on shooting stars.