Photographing the Night sky and the Southern Lights
Have you ever wanted to capture the night sky – the Milky Way or the Aurora Australis (southern lights)? In Queenstown, we are lucky enough to live in an area with little light pollution, making it the ideal location for night sky photography.
There is a variety of excellent locations for you to experience night photography tours. Where you decide to go depends on the best conditions during any given night. By necessity, the availability of night sky tours is dependent on weather conditions and the phase of the moon, so tours are not always guaranteed. However, there are certain times of the year that work perfectly for astrophotography. The winter months provide wonderful photo opportunities due to the early sunset. With a sundown time of no later than 6 pm, there are several hours available earlier in the evening for photographs. It also tends to be darker in general during the winter months.
Please make a booking to organize your night time photography tour- and do not forget to bring your jacket, gloves and hat! It gets chilly here in winter. Since the art of astrophotography is weather dependent and the Milky Way is not visible when the moon is out, try to arrange your tour for several days in a row around the new moon. Also, if you specifically want to photograph the Milky Way, its core is not visible in New Zealand between November and February so, it is to your advantage to book between February and October. If you are interested in general night sky photographs, there are many opportunities here year-round.
If you are adventurous and do not mind the cold, perhaps a night photography tour is exactly what you need! I can teach you how to photograph the Milky Way and, if we are lucky, we may even see the Aurora Australis (southern lights). These tours are best between April and October during the new moon, or at a time of night when the moon is not in the sky – before it has risen or after it sets.