Our skies are spectacular. Aotea/Great Barrier Island is the first island in the world to receive International Dark Sky Sanctuary status.
We are committed to protecting our outstanding night sky. Sanctuaries are in remote areas with few threats to the exceptional quality of their starry nights . Aotea/Great Barrier Island is a unique place where our isolation, our small resident population and our being off-the-grid means we can preserve and protect our night sky for future generations to enjoy. We are committed to the International Dark Sky Association (IDA) principles and requirements for maintaining our island as a Dark Sky Sanctuary.
We live with an exceptional night sky. The Milky Way spans our Southern Hemisphere sky and the Magellanic Clouds, not visible in the Northern Hemisphere, are easily seen. The night sky is woven into Maori culture with Matariki, the rise of the Pleiades constellation, signalling the Maori New Year. The night sky is a sight residents already share with visitors but the spectacular nature of the Island sky deserves to be shared with the world.