The sky holds so many things, some of which have not been explored due to lack of equipment or knowledge. Luckily, Cincinnati Observatory is breaking these norms with its variety of equipment, expert staff, and sites that boast unobstructed views of heavenly bodies. The observatory offers a fantastic experience and is a great motivation for young and aspiring astronomers. To fully enjoy the experience, there a few things that every visitor should know, such as the fun activities you can indulge in, nearby food spots, travel tips, and ways to access the facility. For more information, read this article for a guide to Cincinnati Observatory.
Cincinnati offers plenty of activities for everyone - check out our recommendations on best things to do when you’re visiting this destination.
Things to do / Highlights
Cincinnati Observatory is a major attraction in Ohio that boasts a variety of exciting things for guests to do when visiting alone, with family, colleagues, or friends. The following are the most interesting and rewarding activities in Cincinnati Observatory.
One of the major objectives of Cincinnati Observatory is to educate people on science and astronomy. To that end, the observatory holds different events and programs to introduce the public to astronomy and various aspects of the sky, such as constellation interpretation. This is a once-in-a-lifetime experience that you cannot afford to miss.
Besides learning, the observatory has several working telescopes that allow guests to enjoy beautiful views of planets, stars, galaxies, nebulae, and other heavenly bodies. Testing out the telescopes is always a fun experience that has, for quite some time, been exclusive to astronomers. However, with a facility like Cincinnati Observatory, everyone, including professionals and enthusiasts, can enjoy a fascinating view of the sky.
What to eat
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Cincinnati Observatory is located in an area with many great restaurants serving various cuisines. The closest and most preferred food joints near the observatory are Keystone Bar & Grill Hyde Park and Dutch’s.
Keystone Bar & Grill Hyde Park
Keystone Bar & Grill Hyde Park has a cozy and inviting atmosphere that makes the dining experience a wonderful one. The restaurant is renowned in Cincinnati and Northern Kentucky at large for its outstanding dishes, beer, and cocktails. Some of the signature dishes you should sample include their macaroni cheese, wings topped with BBQ sauce, and buffalo bites served with ranch salad dressing.
Situated just 322 m (0.2 mi) from Cincinnati Observatory is another great food spot called Dutch’s. The restaurant serves delicious Cuban sandwiches and a meat and cheese platter that you should try. Also, the dining atmosphere here is out of this world - in fact, you can opt to enjoy your meal inside the restaurant or on the patio where there is a nice breeze.
When visiting Cincinnati Observatory, there are a few things you should note to ensure your visit is enjoyable and fulfilling.
First, it is worth noting that the views change with the season, and you may find that when it is clear at night, not a lot of things can be seen because the light of the moon tends to overshadow the stars. So the best time to visit is when it is not a full moon.
Observe order in the observatory
In Cincinnati Observatory, there are many types of equipment that are quite expensive. In this light, you should mind your movements and the things you handle, especially when visiting with kids. Always be careful to avoid breaking the equipment and be sure not to touch displays that should not be touched.
Due to budget constraints, the facility does not cater to special needs at this time, but it has established useful links with organizations that can assist with the physically challenged should the need arise. If you’re planning to visit and need assistance, you can call ahead at 513-321-5186 to let the staff know.
Visitors with own viewing equipment
Lastly, if you own a telescope, you are advised to bring it so you can avoid the queue of people waiting to use the on-site equipment. In addition to that, you can learn a few things about how to better handle your telescope.
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How to get there
Cincinnati Observatory is easily accessible from different points of the city.
Several bus services operate in the routes leading to the observatory. An example is the Go Metro buses that depart from Anderson Center Station as early as 4:38 am. If you can’t make it to the bus station early, do not worry as there are other buses scheduled to depart Anderson until noon.
By taxi or car service
There are also several taxi and car services operating on this route. The main ones are Uber and Lyft. Though it may be more convenient to use a cab, it is worth noting that their charges may be a bit higher than public transportation. So you need to consider all the options before booking a ride.
How to get tickets
Tickets to Cincinnati Observatory are available both online and on-site.
For regular daytime tours, tickets at 5 USD per person can be purchased on-site. If you want to sign up online, you can do so here.
Astronomy evenings are limited to 40 guests. To make your reservation for Astro Thursday, Friday, and Saturday online, you first need to register on this form, after which you can proceed to reserve your slot on the platform, by mail, or by calling the number 513-321-5186.
Cincinnati Observatory information
Address: 3489 Observatory Pl, Cincinnati, OH 45208, United States
Opening hours: Mon: 12pm - 9pm; Wed - Fri: 12pm - 9pm (closed on Sat, Sun & Tue)
Cost: 5 USD
Official website: Cincinnati Observatory
Department of tourism: Cincinnati
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