Have you ever wondered what it would feel like to float with the stars?
I always have. I’m sure a lot of other people have too, and I thought it is just an impossibility. After all, only very few get to go to space and see all its wonders. That is until I stood, one night, on the crest of a sand dune in the Red Centre – the Australian Outback.
Stargazing in the Australian Outback is something that you have to experience. I never really thought that it would be something this amazing. It took a while for me to realise that our guide was talking about the Australian night sky because I was lost in the wonder of it all. Here, the night sky is not simply a canvas of twinkling stars because for the Aboriginal people, then and now, it is a book of morals, stories, legends and survival guides that link ancestors, people, and land together.
Why is the Australian Outback the best place to gaze at the stars?
No buildings. No cars. No streetlights. There’s nothing out here, just lots of star lights. The centre of our galaxy rises high in the sky; it arches across the heavens seemingly like the backbone of the night. We see billions of stars. The Australian Outback sky is said to be one of the most impressive skies in the world to stargaze because there is no artificial light that could interfere with the dark night sky. In addition, the southern hemisphere offers some spectacular sky objects, such as the Magellanic Clouds.
So you gaze and wonder.
And you realise how vast the universe is, how seemingly insignificant we are, and yet we also realise that we are where we exactly need to be – just as each of these stars has its rightful place in the heavens.