Stars and peacocks, what is the common thread that binds the two – of course Sariska! The exciting leg of the Astronomy Club programme began with an adventurous road trip to Sariska.

As we reached the Astroport at Sariska, we were welcomed by silence and proximity to Mother Nature. Laden with rows of cozy tents, the camp site smelt of adventure and each group was quickly assigned one. Not even a bit bogged by a tiring six-hour journey, the children promptly unpacked, changed and decided to investigate the place sipping on their welcome drink.

Towards the day end, we had the first taste of the wonders of the Universe, as the instructor showed us the Red Planet through huge high definition telescopes. Excitement for the night had started to build up by then.

We assembled in the grounds, with our red torches and watched the evening star Venus, Jupiter with its distinct Galilean Moons, the craters on luna, the rings of Saturn, the constellations of Orion, dog constellation with its brightest Sirius, the largest Hydra and even Andromeda galaxy, and Milky Way extending from one end of the horizon to the other. The children lapped up complex terms like Zenith, Nadir, Azimuth and also how to divide the sky into houses for identifying locations of constellations using latitudes and altitudes. They learnt how to locate the pole star and also the names of the stars like Castor and Pollux that form a hexagon in the sky. Good food, outstanding arrangements and enriching knowledge made the trip to Sariska, a truly wonderful experience.