Located near Port Douglas in Far North Queensland, Thala Beach Lodge lies on a secluded forest headland beneath vast, open skies and has an unusual facility for the use of guests. In a move to instill a sense of awe and inspiration an on-site observatory has been provided for guests to scan the night skies.
Thala’s positioning on a private headland means the skies are free of light pollution, allowing exceptional views of the southern constellations. Rose Wyatte is the charming resident astronomer at Thala who is currently guiding novice stargazers through the constellations.
Situated in a forest clearing the observatory comprises of two weighty telescopes. Here Rose can be found casting her glowing green pointer towards the heavens while delivering amazing information about the universe to transfixed guests.
Rose’s enthusiasm is both palpable and infectious. This, she says, is due in part to Thala Beach Lodge owner and founder, Rob Prettejohn. “Rob spent so much time teaching me about the night sky”, which “has inspired me to take on the role as guide to the stars”, she says.
Other characters taking part in Rose’s tours include glow bugs, which she says come “out to talk to my laser pointer”, and the frogmouth owls, which she says sometimes hoot “when I’m explaining the bird constellations, and I think only at Thala could this happen”.
Here guests are often so star struck they’ll remain long after the tour. “I love to share a wow factor such as seeing the Milky Way in all its glory on a dark night in a magical setting like Thala”, she says.
Many eyes will turn to the skies above Thala this November 14th during the total solar eclipse. The beach at Thala Beach Lodge will be under the line of totality, making it the prime spot to view this spectacular phenomenon. This rare event, which only occurs when the Moon is full and the Sun and Moon are in conjunct with the Earth, has drawn attention from all over the globe.
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