Parkes open days

It’s been 50 years since Australia helped send images of humankind’s first steps on the Moon around the world. To celebrate we’re holding FREE open days at our Parkes Observatory with FREE transport to and from Parkes.


Saturday 20 July and Sunday 21 July (9am – 5pm):

Take a tour of the world famous "Dish".

Take a tour of the world famous “Dish”. Credit: Shaun Amy.

  • Take the rare opportunity to tour ‘The Dish’
  • Discover the latest in Australian astronomy and space science with talks, presentations and displays – hear from Adelaide-born NASA astronaut Dr. Andrew Thomas and the Australian Space Agency on Sunday 21 July
  • Drive the telescope to observe pulsars in real-time
  • Explore the brightest stars, planets and the Sun with the Central West Astronomical Society
  • Check out the Parkes Observatory Visitors Centre
  • Have fun with science activities for kids
  • Get into theme with space face painting
  • Be entertained by roving performers
  • Step back in time with vintage car displays
  • Listen to live music
  • Enjoy the range of delicious food available

Saturday evening

Watch the movie ‘The Dish’ under the stars, introduced by actor Roy Billing who played the Mayor of Parkes in the film.

Sunday afternoon

Watch the broadcast of the Moon landing as it happened on Monday, 21 July 1969. When, at 12.56pm (AEST), 600 million people around the world watched as humanity took its first steps on the Moon.

More information

Getting there

Parkes Observatory Visitors Centre

585 Telescope Road, Parkes NSW 2870, Australia.

The Parkes radio telescope is located at Parkes Observatory, 20 kilometres north of Parkes off the Newell Highway (the main highway between Brisbane and Melbourne).

Visiting Parkes

To find out more information about what to see and do and where to stay while visiting the Parkes region head to


Parkes Observatory Visitors Centre

Phone +61 2 6861 1777