Where science meets beauty: the World’s most spectacular observatories

From Spain to India, from the United States to Chile, here are 5 unique astronomical observatories of breathtaking beauty

Astronomical observatories not only perform vital functions but, in some instances, are also architectural marvels that take your breath away. Consider the “Jantar Mantar” in Jaipur, India, a UNESCO World Heritage Site, or the majestic “Griffith Observatory” in Los Angeles, which has served as the backdrop for numerous films. Here are five of the world’s most beautiful observatories.

Observatorio del Roque de los Muchachos, Spain

Located in Spain’s Canary Islands, on the edge of the Caldera Taburiente at an altitude of approximately 2,400 meters, the Observatorio del Roque de los Muchachos is home to some of the most sophisticated telescopes. This includes the largest solar telescope in Europe and the world’s largest optical and infrared telescope.

Jantar Mantar, India

Constructed in 1724, the Jantar Mantar Observatory in Jaipur, India, was commissioned by Maharaja Jai Singh II and is the first of the five observatories he established in the country. This observatory is made up of elaborate geometric stone structures so unique that UNESCO has listed it as a World Heritage Site. Originally, it was used to compile astronomical tables and to observe the sun, moon, and the movements of various planets.

La Silla Paranal Observatory, Chile

Perched at 2,400 meters on Cerro La Silla in the southern Atacama Desert, Chile, the La Silla Observatory is managed by the European Southern Observatory (ESO). This astronomical observatory is equipped with cutting-edge instruments that have enabled significant astronomical discoveries.

Yerkes Observatory, United States

The Yerkes Observatory, located in Wisconsin about 150 km from Chicago, offers a glimpse into the past. Designed by George Ellery Hale and Charles Tyson Yerkes and completed in 1892, its aesthetic features such as stone carvings and Romanesque arches are truly stunning.

Griffith Observatory, United States

In Los Angeles, on the southern slope of Mount Hollywood within Griffith Park, stands the Griffith Observatory, an extraordinary astronomical observatory completed in 1935. The site of numerous cinematic masterpieces, it regularly hosts tours, shows, and special events. Its Art Deco architecture adds to its remarkable allure.

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