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Cerro La Silla Astronomical Observatory


Located 156 km north of La Serena and 96 km from La Higuera, you can get there by going north on the Pan-American Highway to km 598, turning east and going another 34 km.

It is a modern observatory located under the clearest skies in the world, and equipped with advanced technology. It is located 2,440 meters above sea level.

The La Silla observatory has thirteen high magnification telescopes. The main telescope is a reflector type measuring 3.6 m in diameter, which belongs to the Agrupación Europea para la Observación Astronómica en el Hemisferio Sur. Its importance lies in the possibility of carrying out studies through the clearest skies in the world.

The building is 18 m high and 30 m in diameter. The cupola weighs 400 tons and the main telescope weighs 250 tons.

Visits, which are only permitted on Saturdays, are restricted, and it is essential to book a place in advance by phoning (56) (2) 2285-006 in Santiago. The visitor must have his own transport.

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