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Observatory

Zselic Park of Stars (Zselici Csillagpark)

Observatory · Zselic · 274 m
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  • Meteor shower from Zselic Park of Stars
    / Meteor shower from Zselic Park of Stars
    Photo: Schmall Rafael, MTSZ - együttműködő szervezetek
  • / Zselic Park of Stars in winter
    Photo: Schmall Rafael, MTSZ - együttműködő szervezetek
  • / A bird’s eye view of Zselic Park of Stars
    Photo: Schmall Rafael, MTSZ - együttműködő szervezetek
  • / Zselic Park of Stars
    Photo: Schmall Rafael, MTSZ - együttműködő szervezetek
Zselic Park of Stars offers unforgettable experiences to every visitor interested in understanding nature and the universe around us.

As part of Zselic Landscape Park, the Park of Stars was awarded the International Dark Sky Park status in 2009 (first in Europe together with Galloway Park, Scotland). Due to lack of outdoor lighting and low light pollution it provides a unique experience of stargazing in the night sky with the naked eye as well as forests of Somogy County also offer a lot to explore. Visitors may take part in various programmes not only by day but by night also to learn about wonders of nature.

Facilities at the park include an observatory building, a lookout tower and five rest spots. Besides being an observatory the main building serves as a starting point for stargazing tours and hosts exhibitions, educational sessions and events on the science of astronomy and local values of nature. Its homogeneous wooden façade design assures perfect harmony with its natural environment. The park outside the building with constellations and a sun dial made of logs is a great thematic introduction to the local experiences.

The visitor centre is handicap-accessible and has a planetarium for 50+ people, a partitioned event hall for 50+ guests, a telescope dome, a gift shop and an exhibition hall. Being inside it feels like on the Moon or another planet. The 25-metre high lookout tower sits at the highest point of the area. The observation deck on the fifth floor is accessible on spiral stairs with landings and awards visitors with a stunning view over Zselic, and in clear weather, buttes of Balaton Uplands, Mecsek Mountains, and Papuk Mountains in Croatia. The constellations of the park below are also more recognisable. The five rest spots give an insight into traditions of Zselic architecture, forest management, forest and wetland habitats. The first station represents a local traditional building style (“talpas ház”, footed-house, referring to the wooden beam structure serving as a foundation), the second one is a daytime constellation observer and the last three ones were designed for outdoor educational sessions.

Besides regular programmes the park organises thematic tours to explore local natural values (4 to 5 km long), guided stargazing tours and astronomical demonstrations by night.

Opening hours

Check service provider’s website.

Price:

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Author
Lilla Éder
Update: January 25, 2022

Public transport

  • There is no direct bus service to Zselic Park of Stars. Get off the coach from Kaposvár to Zselickisfalud at “Zselickisfalud, autóbusz-váróterem”, or the coach from Kaposvár to Szigetvár at “Simonfa, Dózsa György utca” or “Bőszénfa, csárda”, however, the park is over 10 km from the latter two options on foot.

Getting there

  • From “Zselickisfalud, autóbusz-váróterem” head southeast along Fő Street. At the crossroads follow the Blue (K) markers to the left, just in front of the church. Past 5.4 km, where the trail makes a right-angle turn to the left, continue straight along the Blue ▲ (K▲) spur trail.In 300 metres you will reach the clearing on the right with the visitor centre (5.8 km).
  • From the bus stop in Simonfa head northwest along Dózsa György Street following the Blue (K) trail. Past around 11 km turn left onto Blue ▲ (K▲) As your reach the rest spot proceed to the paved road to reach the clearing with the visitor centre (11.8 km).
  • From the bus stop in Bőszénfa follow the Red (P) markers to the north along Road 67 and take the first left. It will merge with the Blue (K) trail and they share the same path for a while. Where they split follow the Blue (K) markers. Change to the Blue ▲ (K▲) trail to the left. As your reach the rest spot proceed to the paved road to reach the clearing with the visitor centre (13.7 km).

Parking

  • Free of charge parking for cars and buses near the visitor centre.
  • Beware of closed roads due to hunting in wintertime. Check on road closures at the reception of Hotel Kardosfa (Phone: 06 82 505 190) or at the website

Coordinates

DD
46.236667, 17.765556
DMS
46°14'12.0"N 17°45'56.0"E
UTM
33T 713225 5124061
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Arrival by train, car, foot or bike

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Zselic Park of Stars (Zselici Csillagpark)

külterület 064/2 hrsz.
7477 Zselickisfalud-Kardosfa
Phone +36 82 505 180

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