Coined the Ningaloo Eclipse, it’s very special because visitors in Western Australia will get to enjoy the show from the World Heritage-listed Ningaloo region, and this celestial event coincides with the start of whale shark season. The April 2023 event is described as a Hybrid Solar Eclipse. However, due to its location, Exmouth will experience a Total Solar Eclipse as the sun, moon and earth align in unison. The Hybrid Solar Eclipse is the rarest, and occurs when the distance between the earth and moon is so delicately balanced that the curvature of the earth comes into play.
To extend the eclipse celebrations throughout the month, visitors can participate in the Dark Sky Festival, which will run April 14-25, 2023 across the region. The event program features family-friendly cultural experiences including live music performances, stargazing tours, exceptional dining experiences and astronomy-led photography lessons, as well as experiences that focus on Aboriginal culture, run by Traditional Owners from the region.
How can People Watch the Ningaloo Total Solar Eclipse at Home?
- Gravity Discovery Centre & Observatory Live Stream: The Gravity Discovery Centre & Observatory is working together with the Department of Jobs Training Science and Innovation along with Tourism WA to showcase this spectacular celestial event. The Gravity Discovery Centre & Observatory will be live streaming the celestial event on their YouTube channel and will feature expert commentary in addition to destination information.
- Nasa Live Stream: In partnership with the Learmonth Solar Observatory, Nasa will be live streaming the entirety of the eclipse on their platforms.
Dark Sky Tourism in Western Australia
Beyond the total solar eclipse, Western Australia is a phenomenal destination for Dark Sky tourism. The capital city, Perth, is home to 80% of Western Australia’s population, leaving over 1.6 million square miles of open, remote landscapes with low levels of light pollution. Some of the top “astro” experiences for visitors include:
- Admire the Milky Way all year round and enjoy pristine conditions to view the Milky Way core several months of the year
- Learn from Aboriginal people, who have read the night sky for more than 60,000 years, and camp on country under the stars
- The Gravity Discovery Centre & Observatory, just 1.5 hours drive from Perth, to view the dark sky through state-of-the-art telescopes and learn more during Aboriginal Astronomy sessions
- Take a stargazing tour with D’Guy Charters and visit the Kalbarri Skywalk, which opened in June 2020 and offers breathtaking views over Kalbarri National Park from 330-feet up
- Didgeridoo Dreaming Night Tour: Enjoy an amazing night time adventure under a sky of magnificent stars, enjoying fresh seafood or bush tucker cooked on a warm campfire. Learn about local Aboriginal culture and history and lose yourself in the stories of the Dreamtime and didgeridoo meditation. Transcend into the ancient and fascinating history of the Gutharraguda (Aboriginal name for Shark Bay meaning ‘Two Waters’).
- Pinnacles Sunset Stargazing Tour: The Pinnacles Desert is well renowned for its ancient landscape and dark skies. Learn about Aboriginal Astronomy and hear Dreamtime stories of the night sky. The tour runs all year round, the night sky changes throughout the seasons and although it is a bit colder, autumn, winter and spring are some of the best times of the year to see the Milky Way and Planets in the Southern Hemisphere. The tour also includes a guided bushtucker/bush medicine walk at Hangover Bay, and more.