See the stars in Valencia | Journey from Valencia to the Stars

The astronomy garden in the Umbracle. / LP

The Astronomy Garden installed in the Umbracle of the Cité des Sciences allows observation of the sky

Astronomy is a fascinating science. Looking at the sky is an activity that humans have been doing since the beginning of recorded history. It arouses both perplexity and curiosity. Understanding the celestial world seems mystical and beyond the reach of many. But in Valencia the opportunity is offered to observe the celestial dome from the hand of the city of
arts and sciences, proposed by the Jardin d’Astronomie.

exposure, freely accessible, provides the public with observation and measurement instruments allowing them to grasp some basic notions in a playful and interactive way for all types of public in search of answers.

What time is it?

You can be the gnonome, an instrument that helps determine the time by positioning the sun. /


The first instrument is the gnomon, it is one of the oldest and also one of the simplest. It is a simple bar perpendicular to the ground that casts its shadow on a horizontal plane, allowing one to observe how the gnomon’s shadow moves during the day and how its length varies with the seasons. The gnomon can also be used as a calendar and sundial. In the Garden, it is possible to become this particular instrument. The observer must know that to make a correct reading, he must stand on the date marked on the central plate and the shadow will indicate the time, as explained by the City of Arts.

To determine the time, before the invention of the clock that we all know, there were other instruments like the equatorial sundial and the corrected equatorial sundial. Its objective was not to measure the civil time marked by our chronographs, but the solar time. The time observed on the sundials coincides with civil time where 120 minutes are added to the reading in summer and sixty in winter.

the moon and the stars

The lunar clock in the Jardin d’Astronomie. /


The pretty unresponsive astronomical garden also allows viewing of the lunar clock which indicates the time the Moon rises, as well as its position on the horizon at that time. In this way it is possible to know the time and position at which the Moon is hiding, which, despite popular belief, is not only visible at night, but also during the day.

The attractive ride offered by the Umbracle places the viewer in front of the reproduction of a globe which very graphically shows the main effect of the rotational movement of the Earth. And so it can be confirmed where on the planet its inhabitants live day and night. With the orientation towards the pole star, it is known that the area that appears in the shadow corresponds to the area of ​​the globe where the night is experienced, while that illuminated by the sun is the part of the Earth where it is daytime .

The Astronomy Garden answers all kinds of questions about the sky, it is an activity in
free access to the exhibition space. It is open every day from 4:10 p.m. to 11:10 p.m. except Fridays and Saturdays when access to the visit closes at 12:10 a.m.

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