ESO Open House Day 2016

See behind the scenes of the world’s most productive ground-based observatory

28 September 2016

On Saturday 22 October 2016 the European Southern Observatory (ESO) will open its doors to the public between 11:00 and 18:00 CEST at its headquarters in Garching bei München, Germany.

This event is one of the Open House Day activities taking place across the whole Garching research campus, where several other institutes will also open their doors to the public.

ESO can be found at location number 39 on this map of the campus.

Some of the highlights of the 2016 programme are:

  • See the ESO Headquarters buildings — join guided tours through the innovatively styled office building and technical building. Learn how ESO creates artificial stars, see what mirror prototypes for the European Extremely Large Telescope look like, and more. Find out more about the ESO Supernova Planetarium & Visitor Centre, currently under construction — planned to open in 2017, it will be the largest tilted planetarium in Germany, Austria and Switzerland;

  • Virtual and 3D tours — embark on journeys into and around some of ESO’s most breathtaking sites and groundbreaking instruments;

  • Live connection to Paranal and ALMA — experience a live connection to our telescopes in the Atacama Desert in Chile. Connect to ESO's Very Large Telescope at Paranal and to ALMA, the largest astronomical project in operation, consisting of 66 antennas located 5000 metres above sea level on the Chajnantor Plateau in Chile;

  • ESO Chile Chill — take a moment to relax and watch incredible images from our sites in Chile while listening to a chillout soundtrack;

  • Talks, podcasts and documentaries — listen, watch, and discover more about ESO;

  • Face painting, comet factory, infrared photos, storytelling and gifts for the little ones — children will have lots of fun having their faces painted with different astronomical motifs such as stars, galaxies or comets. They can learn how to build a comet and have their infrared photo taken, searching for stamps to fill out their album and receiving rewards for their efforts;

  • Solar observations — safely observe the Sun through a special telescope (weather permitting);

  • Virtual trip across the sky — enjoy an introduction to the sky with the constellations and planets visible around this time thanks to a planetarium software presentation;

  • And much more.

There is no need to book a visit in advance. You can simply show up at the activities you are interested in. ESO has a cafeteria where light refreshments will be available.

Media representatives who wish to attend the event are kindly asked to confirm their participation by contacting

Information on how to travel to ESO’s Headquarters in Garching can be found here.



Herbert Zodet
Open House Day Coordinator
Garching bei München, Germany
Phone: +49 89 3200 6422

Tania Johnston
Open House Day Coordinator
Garching bei München, Germany
Tel: +49 89 320 061 30
Cell: +49 170 867 5293

About the Announcement



ESO Open House Day 2016
ESO Open House Day 2016
Tag der offenen Tür 2016
Tag der offenen Tür 2016