So you’re wondering if it’s possible to have “fun” with a telescope – after all, aren’t they just for nerds and astronomy geeks? People from all walks of life enjoy gazing up at the stars from their yard, or somewhere near their home.
How much fun you have with a telescope is down to two key things:
- The type of telescope you have
- Your imagination
So what are the fun things you can do with that shiny new telescope you just bought?
Well, it’s the most obvious use for your telescope now, isn’t it, and the idea of “fun” is a pretty subjective thing too. Some people think diving for a perfectly good airplane is a lot of fun. Still, astronomers would argue that enjoying the free light show offered by the night sky is a lot of fun. We just wanted to get the most prominent “fun” out of the way so we can focus on secondary fun things.
Don’t have a telescope yet? Click here for the best telescopes in India.
2. Daytime Viewing
Around 99% of people who buy a telescope don’t bother using the telescope during the day, even though there’s no reason for them not to do that. Be it the mountain ranges, red eyes of the bird, or reading that 2km away banner. A good telescope delivers a much higher level of magnification than most binoculars you may have. So, if you want to spend a few hours gazing at distant mountains or hills, an average refractor or compound telescope is ideal. An image corrector would be required for the reflector type.
3. Become Famous
We mentioned this in another article, but did you know that if you’re the first person to find a new comet, asteroid or planetoid then it gets named after you? How cool would it be to become the next Edmund Halley and have millions of people staring up at a comet or asteroid named after you for the next couple of hundred years? There are still dozens of new comets, asteroids, and other celestial bodies being discovered every month. So why not go out there and grab your 15-minutes (or centuries) of fame?
Once you’ve gained a little bit of experience using your telescope, your next natural step in the journey should be to get involved in astrophotography. Most modern telescopes will have at least some way of allowing you to attach a DSLR camera to them. This means you can set up the camera to see exactly what you see and then just push a button to take a picture.
The beauty in that is you can share your hobby with your friends through social networks like Facebook and Twitter. There’s also an option for you to sell some of your clicks to stock photography sites and make yourself some extra cash. Yes…you could make your hobby pay for itself by taking a few pictures of the moons, planets, and stars you’re gazing at each night anyway! Check out our handpicked telescopes for astrophotography if you don’t have one already.
5. Challenge Yourself
Far too many people simply point their telescope at our Moon, never bothering to up their skill level when it comes to astronomy. Even our solar system has a vast amount to offer, so why not set yourself a new challenge every week? One of the biggest and best goals to start with is identifying the moons of Jupiter. You also get to watch them move in front of our impressive gas giant neighbor too. Not only are you honing your skill and acquiring new knowledge, but you’re also keeping your hobby fresh and exciting both for now and years to come.
6. Teach Your Friends
When you truly enjoy astronomy, it becomes something you’ll want to share with your friends. So, why not make an evening of it by taking your astronomy on the road? You could grab some snacks and head for somewhere with as little light pollution as possible.
Don’t you think your friends will be interested? Well, in that case, wait until you show them detailed views of the Moon craters, or the rings of Saturn and then watch their minds blow as you’re talking to them about it – even the ones who think telescopes are just for geeks!
Over to you!
Your telescope can be as much of a fun tool as you want it to be. Even just spreading your astronomical wings to include your friends and do some astrophotography will add a whole new dimension to how much fun astronomy can give you.