Enjoy astronomy in Formentera
Little or no light pollution and idyllic surroundings
Astronomy in Formentera is one of the most coveted activities for lovers of clear skies and those who enjoy stargazing.
On the island you will find a haven of peace in its firmaments free of any kind of pollution, being able to connect as never before with the universe.
Taking advantage of this dreamlike panorama, festivals have even been created to invite locals as well as visitors to enjoy different nights full of stories to tell.
Formentera, an island with a perfect sky for astronomy
Environmental preservation is taken very seriously on the island. Thanks to its environmental protection laws and the lack of overcrowding, today you can enjoy a natural Formentera that avoids pollution (including light pollution). This has resulted in Formentera becoming a perfect place to enjoy astronomy.
The skies of this corner of the Mediterranean are one of the best known by lovers of this practice, which leads to reflection and also to the union of man and nature.
Without industries or large cities, airport or any other excessive construction, the island has positioned itself, over time, as a true paradise where you can not only enjoy the sea or the sand, but also the sky.
Where to enjoy of astronomy in Formentera?
The island hides paradisiacal beaches, a crystalline sea that is hard to forget and a warm and welcoming gastronomy and people no matter what time of the year you visit.
However, looking at the sky over Formentera is another spectacle in itself.
From there you will be able to enjoy different phenomena such as the Lunar Observation, an event promoted by NASA, or the conjunctions between planets, among others.
That is why more and more people are becoming interested in its skies, which has led to the development of different events and associations related to astronomy and that you should know to make the most of your visit to the island.
One of the things the island stands out for is its low light pollution. This makes it possible in Formentera to admire the stars in the sky without any kind of obstacle.
Although the whole territory is free of pollution and is a spectacle for the senses, on the island you can find, in particular, two places worth visiting to enjoy the best views.
Cap de Barbaria area
This area is where the famous
Lighthouse of Cap de Barbaria
which has inherited its name from the cape on which it is located.
Also, this area and lighthouse are located in the southernmost point of the Balearic Islands archipelago, making it a privileged enclave in Formentera to enjoy the night sky.
At the Lighthouse of Barbaria you can see the stars in full, especially on new moon nights, as well as the passage of satellites and shooting stars. We recommend that you move away from the lighthouse and go to the Torre des Garroveret area, where the beams of light from the lighthouse will not dazzle you.
The magic of this corner of Formentera lies in the fact that it has almost no light pollution, which makes it the ideal destination for astronomy lovers. The nearest town is Sant Francesc, 6 kilometers away, and heading south from Cap de Barbaria there is nothing but sea until you reach the coast of Algeria. Therefore, the sky in this area of Formentera is impressive.
If you are going to enjoy astronomy to the fullest at this point, a recommendation is to start your trip a few hours earlier, so as not to miss the impressive sunset that is experienced in this magical place.
La Mola Lighthouse area
Another place where you can fully enjoy astronomy in Formentera is in the surroundings of the well-known Lighthouse of La Mola.
If the previous area was the southernmost point of the island, the area of La Mola is the highest place, which also makes it perfect for enjoying a good night of stars.
La Mola Lighthouse, located on the east side of the island, is the place chosen by many people to enjoy the sunrise or moonrise in Formentera.
To avoid being dazzled by the beams of light from the lighthouse and for your eyes to get used to the darkness, we recommend that you move away to the north or south of the lighthouse. Beware of walking at night near the cliffs.
As a curiosity, next to the lighthouse you can find a monolith erected as a tribute to the famous writer Jules Verne, because he mentions this exquisite place in the book
Héctor Servadac, travels and adventures through the solar world.
Astronomy events in Formentera not to be missed
Searching for the stars on your own is one of the many things you can do in Formentera. However, if you want to go a step further and enjoy different activities with more people, the island has launched some key events that you can not miss, especially if you are a lover of the sky. There are also some remarkable astronomical phenomena that you can enjoy in Formentera. Let’s see what it’s all about.
Formentera Astronómica, the festival for enjoying the stars
Such is the fame of Formentera’s astronomy that every year a festival dedicated exclusively to this subject is held, known as Formentera Astronómica.
When is Formentera Astronómica held?
This year 2022 Formentera Astronómica was held from May 6 to 8 and, both for the inhabitants of the island and for visitors, it is one of the most important meetings in relation to the stars. This event promises fun for all audiences during a weekend in which sea and sky merge with the aim of enjoying all together.
Activities that take place during the festival
Among its most important activities are special workshops for children, talks about the universe and a night photography workshop, focused on astronomy, guided by experts to make the most of your creativity during the visit.
An event that merges with gastronomy
In addition to the many activities that take place to enjoy astronomy, it also highlights the fusion of this special event with another of the things that most like the island: its gastronomy.
Thus, throughout the weekend dedicated to the sky, you can also enjoy special menus and exclusive dinners where the best of the sky and the best of the earth come together to create a unique spectacle for the senses.
Professional speakers to answer questions
Formentera Astronómica is an event that was created to bring the mysteries of the universe, the sky and the stars closer to both children and adults, as well as professionals and the curious.
For this reason, its workshops and lectures are famous, always conducted by experts, which can be enjoyed throughout the weekend and give the opportunity to get a little closer to this immense world of which there is still much to discover.
Perseid shower, an event to admire Formentera's sky
The Perseid shower is one of the most awaited astronomical events by all star and night sky lovers.
If you want to see them like never before, a great idea would be to go to Formentera to do so, where you will have the opportunity to enjoy an unparalleled spectacle that will remain etched in your retina for a lifetime.
When does the Perseid shower occur?
The Perseids is perhaps the best known star shower. In August you will have the opportunity to enjoy this natural spectacle that more and more visitors are joining if they are in Formentera at this time. The days of greatest intensity are between August 10 and 15.
Although it is visible from several points of Spain, going to the island will always be a safe bet, as its sky is one of the best places to see this famous rain. If it also happens to be a new moon you will enjoy a very dark sky and a magnificent spectacle. You can check online a lunar calendar to see if during those days you will enjoy a new moon.
From where to enjoy the Perseids in Formentera
One of the best places to enjoy the summer star shower par excellence is, once again, the Faro de Barbaria and even better, the area near the Torre des Garroveret (not dazzled by the lighthouse). With hardly any light pollution, it is once again the best place to enjoy Formentera’s astronomy, even on such a special event.
To enjoy them to the fullest, all you have to do is lie down looking at the sky and wait for your eyes to get used to the darkness.
Astronomical Association of Formentera, a new initiative born from the passion for astronomy.
Such is the passion for astronomy in Formentera, that a group of friends decided to start a non-profit association to consolidate this activity as part of the island. Thus was born the Astronomical Association of FormenteraThe first skywatchers’ group was founded just a few years ago, thanks to the initiative of this group of skywatchers.
What the association wants to achieve
From the association it is intended that any interested and / or amateur of the sky have the opportunity to join this initiative. Through classes and workshops, the Association wishes to carry out a task of informative dissemination so that inhabitants and tourists of the island can learn more about the firmament of Formentera.
A heaven in search of excellence
Likewise, this Association also wishes to obtain the “Star Light” certification. This is a recognition offered by the Astrophysical Institute of the Canary Islands that promotes and supports astronomical tourism in skies with little light pollution and excellent astronomical visibility conditions.
In short, this certificate is a document that recognizes the quality of the night sky in the different towns, cities and geographical areas that obtain it. Traveling to the island is much more than just enjoying its beaches, coves, fine sand and crystal clear sea. When night falls, looking at the sky will be imperative if you want to experience Formentera’s astronomy to the fullest.