Time Required : 1-2 hrs
Entry Fee : Adults: INR 10,
Children: INR 5
Timings : 9:00 AM - 5:00 PM (Closed on Sundays and national holidays)
Situated on a hill at an elevation of about 60 metres above sea level (the highest point in the city), this astronomical observatory offers exquisite views of the surroundings and the city as a whole. Beautiful roses can be found in the garden in front. It was built in 1837 and is part of the Department of Physics, University of Kerala today. It is fast developing as one of India's most important astronomical centres with modern facilities like an 11-inch telescope, CCD camera, sun workstations, image processing facility and partnership with national programs.
The observatory was a brainchild of Sri Swathi Tirunal, the Maharaja of Travancore who was an ardent follower of astronomy. He took a particular interest in equipping it with the best instruments available in Europe at that time. Along with astronomical equipment, meteorological observations were also paid attention.
The instruments initially procured for the Observatory include a transit telescope with five feet focal length and four inches aperture, a transit clock, an altitude and azimuth instrument having 18 and 15-inch circles and powerful telescopes. Today, computational facilities, a library and audio-video facilities are available for students of the University. Sky-watching programs for students, teachers and the general public are organised in the evenings.
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