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Bosscha Observatory Bandung Attraction & Entrance Fee

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bosscha observatory bandung
Bosscha Observatory Bandung, popular for its giant Zeiss telescope. Img: Yusep Setiawan

Make the fun trip to Bandung balanced by visiting the educational Bosscha Observatory in Lembang. Bosscha Observatory is an educational tourism spot well-known for its gigantic Zeiss telescope. People should know that Bosscha is the only astronomical observatory in Indonesia. Hence, makes its role for astronomical study crucial.

Not only for scientists, but Bosscha also opens its arm wide for general visitors. The aim is to inform and educate common people about the cosmos, the sun, the star even the asteroid. For astronomy enthusiasts, Bosscha is definitely worth a visit.

There is a demo on how to operate the telescope. Zeiss telescope may be the primadonna, but the 6 other telescopes are also intriguing to learn too.

green surrounding
Green and tree surrounding the observatory. Img: Christopher Wang

Bosscha Green Surrounding

After paying the entrance fee, walk a bit to reach the gathering place. Which takes place near the security post. One can have a simple chit-chat with the visitor before the gathering. Once the guide comes, the guide will conduct a short overview explaining the route.

Walking to the first spot isn’t that far. Despite its slight elevation, walking to the spot isn’t tiring. Greeneries here and there provide clean air and shades, especially on sunny days. In many areas, well-maintained grass covers the ground. So green and looking fresh. As if calling for a picnic day.

Old Dutch-style Buildings

It cannot be said that the building in Bosscha Observatory is modern. Since its establishment around the 1920s. Seems like the building design remains the same. Eccentric with classic Dutch exterior design. Most buildings are colored white with red linings mainly on roof parts. As for the main observatory dome, the color is full white.

dutch style
The observatory classic dutch style building. Img: Fernando Mulia

The observatory complex is part of a local college, Bandung Technology Institute. But the ambiance is not that geeky. Instead, it’s more like a park that has a cozy atmosphere. Thanks to the clean areas and cool air, guests will immediately feel relaxed. No wonder, locals love to revisit Bosscha over and over again.

Bosscha Zeiss Telescope

While entering that dome-shaped building, people may feel that space isn’t that wide. What else can be done – as initially this place isn’t designed for tourist. Many photos of galaxies are displayed, hung on the wall.

Following the frames, visitors will then led to the building center. This is where the giant, double-refractor Zeiss telescope is located. It is heartwarming to know that this huge telescope was given by the Dutch scientist.

Bosscha Zeiss telescope
The Zeiss telescope to see Mars planet. Img: Isman Junian

Back then, the grantee was the Dutch-Indies Astronomy Association. That event took place at around 1928, it means the age of the telescope has almost reached 100 years old. To date, it still works properly. Of course, this is a result of proper and routine maintenance.

With a magnifying capacity of 1.100x. This allows the user to land a sight as far as Mars and Jupiter. Not only planets, but this telescope is also the equipment to learn of the double star. The guide will show the audience how to operate the telescope.

But unfortunately, visitors are not allowed to try this telescope. One can try using other telescopes if coming for the night visit. Such as Bamberg and portable telescope located in other buildings.

bosscha dome
The Bosscha dome, it can be open and close. Img: maykel ricardo

Outstanding Dome

The giant telescope is located on a stage, but the tour is a standing one. All of the audience will be encircling this stage. Unfortunately, there’s no seat prepared, since the space is pretty narrow. The guide not will only explain, the audience can ask questions too. And find an amusing fact of our stars or moon.

The telescope isn’t the only interesting part of this building. What’s the point of a historic telescope if the dome cannot be opened? This only dome, which becomes the landmark of Bandung is gigantic as well.

The weight is 56 ton, which means it is several times heavier than an elephant. Despite its weight, it has a certain system that allows people to open the dome. The guide will provide a demo on how to open the dome too.

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Bosscha Observatory Opening Hours

The Bosscha Observatory opens from Tuesday to Saturday. However, tourists can only visit the observatory on Saturday. From Tuesday until Friday the observatory is open for institutional visits only.

There are 4 sessions on midday, starting from 9:30 AM, 10:45 AM, 12:00 PM, and 1:45 PM. While for a night visit, it starts from 5 to 8 PM. However, it required a reservation and the schedule is not every week. The maximum participant for each session is 90 people.

Bosscha Observatory Opening Hours
Saturday09:30, 10:45 AM, 12:00 and 1:45 PM

See: Farmhouse Lembang, Attraction & Culinary Spot.

Bosscha Observatory Entrance Fee

For the midday visit, tourists will have to pay Rp15.000 for the entrance fee. While for the night visit it cost Rp20.000. The night tour starts during 5:00 – 8:00 PM.

Bosscha Observatory Entrance Fee
Midday tourRp15.000
Night tourRp20.000

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Facilities

Aside from those telescopes, there are no top-notch facilities. Toilets are available nearby the security post. Close to the toilet is a praying space for Muslim visitors. There are two parking points on the premise. One located near the security post, and one is located not far from there.

The parking points are undeniably narrow, especially for cars. Visitors can also sit on the green grass while waiting for the upcoming session. The cool temperature of Lembang makes it cozy to sit there.

However, no food is allowed when entering the site. Need to keep in mind not to throw the rubbish carelessly. There is no dining place in the observatory complex. So, better to have a meal before reaching this place.

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How To Get To Bosscha Observatory

Getting to Bosscha Observatory from Bandung City Center? That takes around 15 km heading to the Lembang area. The distance will be best tackled by hiring a car or grabbing a ride-hail car. For the ride-hail, the fare will be around Rp50.000-Rp60.000/car. One can also go humble like locals by taking a public van.

Not only one can mingle with the locals inside the van. Getting to know Bandung more is another bright side of taking a van. If taking a van, prepare at least 3 hours. Since the van halts in many places to gather passengers.

First, head to the East Gate of Bandung Railway Station. Then, find a public van with St. Hall – Lembang route. There will be around 20 stops before reaching Bank BJB in Lembang. Get down in that Bank, then continue the trip on foot.

As advised before, get the meal beforehand to avoid a grumbling tummy while in Bosscha. Along the road, there is plenty of warung along the road. That takes another 1.9 km to reach the observatory. One can also order a ride-hail bike from the drop-off point with Rp8.000 fare.

Address & Location

Bosscha observatory located in Jl. Peneropongan Bintang No.45, Lembang, West Bandung Regency, Jawa Barat 40391.

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