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Skinakas Observatory. Discovering the Universe from the Cretan mountains [upt 2019]

Overview: A unique experience in the high altitude part of the Cretan landscape. In the central and highest mountain of #Crete, Psiloritis, an observatory has been settled more than thirty years ago.

On Skinakas peak, the site of the homonymous observatory

Location: In 1986, the year that the Halley’s comet passed close to Earth, the Physics department of the University of Crete in collaboration with Greek and German institutions built the observatory on the peak called Skinakas (1750 m. elevation), west of the higher peak of the mountain Psiloritis. Skinakas peak is located about 50 km to the SW of #Heraklion.

The main telescope

Facilities: Skinakas Observatory is named after the place name of the peak. During the late 1980s and the 1990s the installation was expanded adding two more telescope sites and a guesthouse. Now there are two telescopes in use, and the installation is seasonally inhabited by researchers, from April to November. Each third Sunday from May to September the Skinakas Observatory is open to the public in the evening.

⇑ Pros: unique experience of the mountainous aspect of the Cretan landscape, visit of one prominent observatory, excellent view from the peak.

Cons: be aware of the narrow, and damaged by snowfalls, road while approaching to the observatory.

Overall score: 5/5 experience.

Tips: catch the sunset on top of Skinakas peak, dress warm.

Panorama of Skinakas peak and observatory
Sunset on Skinakas peak (19.08.2018)

🔝 Best time to visit: May - September, during the open days. 

For more info visit our blog.

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