stargazing on Maui

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Jun 27th, 2005, 07:18 PM
  #1
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stargazing on Maui

I have heard that on Maui a resort offers stargazing lessons from the rooftop. Any idea where this might be and which hotel it is? I know there are a couple of telescopes run by nasa at the top of Haleakala crater but the public isn't welcome. Anyone had any experience with a special stargazing spot, especially where someone can tell you what the heck you are looking at?
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Jun 27th, 2005, 07:37 PM
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I have never been to Maui, but I am an ameteur astronomer.

I have a few telescopes, one refractor and two reflectors.

BUT, you don't need a telescope to stargaze, and you do not need a professional.

I am not sure if you live in a city, they can be so light polluted these days, and that stinks. I am self taught. I bought the BEST and easiest book. It is called 'The Stars, A New Way To See Them' by H.A. Rey. He is the gentleman that wrote the Curious George books.

The book is a litlle more geared to northern latitudes, but doable for southern. It has both charts.

The book is incredibly easy to follow. I have given it to 12 year old children and they are able to find things on their own after using the book and practicing a few times.

I have done some work with children, donating my time to kids in camps with serious illnesses. I have used this book and they have all enjoyed it. I have purchased this book for a few people and they still use it.

So if you find a spot to use it, also get a small red flashlight (or paint the lens red) to look at your book in the dark. It will keep your night vision.

Good luck. Life is too short, and I can tell you that going out under the stars and cruising thru the milky way stopping along at each constellation is more than an awesome way to spend an evening.
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Jun 28th, 2005, 06:28 AM
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At the Hyatt Regency Maui in Kaanapali. Called a Tour of the Stars: if the weather is clear, every night at 8pm, 9pm or 10pm for 1 hour, go up to the roof and look through 2 large telescopes at the wonders of the universe with an astronomer in attendance. I saw Jupiter and Saturn with its rings! Amazing. For hotel guests: $20 per adult, for non-guests: $25 per adult. Half price for children. On Friday and Saturday nights there’s an 11pm showing for couples only, includes chocolate dipped strawberries and a glass of champagne. Hotel guests: $25pp, non-guests: $30pp.

The prices may have changed since last year, but call and make reservations in advance through the Hyatt concierge (because it does sell out). It was amazing.
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Jun 30th, 2005, 03:27 AM
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So it is worth the money to go and see it? How "high powered" are their telescopes? Did you do the regular class or the "couples" class?
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Jun 30th, 2005, 05:58 AM
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bebalm - I felt it was definitely well worth the money. There's very little light pollution on Maui, so we saw lots of amazing things. I don't know how highpowered the telescopes were. All I can tell you is that when I saw Saturn in the telescope, it was about the size of a pingpong ball (not including the rings), which I thought was pretty impressive. I went on the regular tour. When the tour was over, they gave us Mars Bars or Milkyway Bars as a parting treat, which I thought was kind of cute.
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Jun 30th, 2005, 01:13 PM
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thanks kamahinaohoku,
You give the best Maui advice!!! I mentioned this to my husband, and he thought it sounded very neat. When I looked at the website it says they allow only 10 "students" at a time. and that you could book a Private Party. There will be 7 of us going...maybe we can make it a private class. That could be fun. So Saturn looks like a ping pong ball...does it look like it does when you are in school in the science books? All colorful with the giant rings? I am just amazed at how you can look into a machine and see something that far away. It sounds very cool.

So i guess you live in maui? Have you been to the Kupanaha magic show in Kaanapali?
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Jun 30th, 2005, 01:27 PM
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bebalm - I guess I forgot to mention Saturn's rings! How foolish of me. But yes, you can definitely see them, and the colors. I haven't seen the magic show in Ka'anapali, sorry. But if you have the chance, go see the Ulalena show in Lahaina. It's at the Maui Myth and Magic Theatre just off Front Street. It's produced by the same people who do Cirque Du Soleil, and while it is definitely not the Cirque (nor a magic show), it is very unique, very beautiful. It calls to mind the the history of the islands, and what Bruddah Iz used to sing about, Mystical, Marvelous, Magical Maui. Absolutely wonderful...and definitely NOT a luau.
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Jun 30th, 2005, 01:38 PM
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bebalm, if what kamahinaohoku says is correct, (which I am not doubting, but I have not seen it) And you can see saturn the size of a ping pong ball, GO!!!!!!!!

I have never seen in any larger than a dime. And that was in a Clark 10" refractor in an observatory dome!

And the telescope that we have at the university is a really nice one.

Those prices that he gave you sound worth it to me.

I wish that I could see it.
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Jun 30th, 2005, 03:47 PM
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bebalm,

I just copied and pasted the info below from my original post because I think it gives a lot of the info you were asking about. It was really incredible!We were there this May and highly encourage you to try it if you are looking to stargaze.


I had researched a lot before our trip but had never heard or read about this activity until we got to Maui and I saw one of the fliers for STAR GAZERS MAUI. We called and booked this and it was a true highlight of our trip. You meet the tour at the top of Haleakala and view the sunset which was incredible but it was what followed that was truly awesome. When it gets dark there is the most amazing star display you will ever see - THOUSANDS of stars are visible - more than anyone we were on the tour with had ever seen in their life. The tour owner (Jim) and his assistant(Benny) set up their large telescope, explain various astronomical facts, and guide you to viewing planets and stars. It was truly amazing! They provide a really tasty sandwich and salad dinner plus a non-alcoholic drink, down coats, hats, and gloves, and later in the night, hot chocolate, and cookies.

I would highly encourage anyone on Maui to try this out. All the people that were with us loved it too. The tours are only on Monday, Wednesday, and Friday and weather permitting. We had originally booked for our anniversary night but it was cancelled due to total cloud cover at the summit but then we got to experience it the next night we had free. We booked directly with STAR GAZERS MAUI owner Jim at (808) 281-9158.

Hope others looking for a nightime activity get to try this out. Especially after experiencing it, I couldn't believe I hadn't heard about it earlier.
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Jun 30th, 2005, 11:50 PM
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Thanks to all. The other stargazine trip on Haleakala sounds interesting too. We have been to Maui twice before, but never heard of either of these activities while there. And Kamahinaohoku, any other native islander suggestions for our vacation. Sounds like you know lots of inside things. We would love restaurant/activity suggestions that you have.
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