The Siding Spring Observatory (SSO) is the largest optical observatory in Australia and is an important site for astronomy, astrophysics and space science in Australia.
It is located atop Mt Woorut (~1160m) at the end of Observatory Road, 27km west of Coonabarabran on the eastern edge of the Warrumbungle National Park. Coming from Coonabarabran, follow the brown tourist information signs along the John Renshaw Parkway (or Timor Road) to Siding Spring Observatory.
From the west, follow the signs to the Warrumbungle National Park. Travel through the park towards Coonabarabran. The turnoff to Siding Spring Observatory is about 200m past the eastern boundary of the National Park.
The weather here can be quite variable. It can be quite warm or at the other extreme quite cool. Sunscreen, a hat, water and a warm coat/jacket are advisable.
Please note: During times of Severe Fire Danger and extreme weather events, the observatory will be closed to visitors. If in doubt, please contact us.
The Dome Café and Visitors Centre are open Monday to Saturday 10am to 4pm and closed Sundays (except during school holidays). Closed Good Friday, Christmas Day and Boxing Day.
Entry fees to the Exploratory exhibition in the Visitor Centre are:
- Adult $5.50
- Child/Senior $3.50
- Family $13.50
As one of the most valuable observatory sites, Siding Spring has a lot to offer to its visitors. You will be able to find many informative and educational displays about telescopes and astronomy, with hands-on activities, augmented reality and multimedia presentations for the whole family in the Dome café and Visitor Centre. Find out more about school and group tours for all ages.
Have you seen something in the sky and would like to find out what it is? Why not Ask an Astronomer?