Kennedy Space Center – a Space Traveler Guidebook

KennedySpaceCenter_022The number one bucket list destination for any space geek traveler is Kennedy Space Center. America’s biggest and oldest space port is the center point of American space history, space present and space future. Conveniently located on the east coast of Florida, it is close to many other tourist hot spots, making it an ideal holiday destination. This post has all the tips for the first time visitor, but also offers some insider’s ‘secrets’ for those that have been there already and may consider a follow-up visit. Kennedy Space Center is much more than just the Visitor Complex. Continue reading

Baikonur Cosmodrome – Gateway To Space

Proton launch pad

Baikonur Cosmodrome is the largest space port in the world. Thousands of launches have taken place from here, making it the true birth place of space exploration. Worldwide it is only rivaled by Kennedy Space Center in the United States. Many ‘firsts’ in space were constructed and launched from Baikonur, starting with Sputnik, the world’s first satellite, in 1957. The first person in space, Yuri Gagarin, launched from here in 1961, as did the first woman in space, Valentina Tereshkova, in 1963. Continue reading

Baikonur Cosmodrome – The Last Place on Earth

Baikonur CosmodromeBaikonur Cosmodrome. Located literally in the middle of nowhere in Central Asia. Hardly an attractive or easy place to travel to. Yet on the bucketlist of most of my spacegeek-friends on social media. I have written a few posts on this place already, most recently writing a travel guide to the city of Baikonur. This post describes Baikonur Cosmodrome from the perspective of its most important visitors. For space travelers Baikonur truly is the Last Place on Earth. Next stop: Space! Continue reading

Save the Planet! … from asteroids

Emergency Asteroid Defence Project“Those Asteroids that hit this morning – those were nothing – the size of basketballs and Volkswagens. This new one we’re tracking is the size of Texas, Mr. President. It’s what we call a Global Killer… the end of mankind. Half the world will be incinerated by the heat blast… the rest will freeze to death in a nuclear winter…” This quote from the 1998 disaster movie Armageddon perfectly matched the simulation that was played as an exercise at the IAU Planetary Defense Conference in Italy a few weeks ago. Continue reading

An armchair trip into space

The Red StuffSpace is the ultimate travel destination for many. Only few actually make it. There are still only around 500 astronauts, less than 10 of which can be earmarked as true space tourists. So until space travel becomes available to the masses, we’ll have to do with armchair travels. The entertainment industry has been working hard over the years to take us along on trips all across the Universe. Most of this is through fictional stories of alien worlds, populated by strange and often hostile creatures. Far from reality, but fueling our desire to travel to the stars. Continue reading

A space tourist on Earth

SpaceBucketList_27Earlier today I published the space bucket list, containing all flown manned spaceflight vehicles on public display around the world. Reason for compiling this list was ongoing debate about specific spacecraft locations and people (including me) questioning the authenticity of certain spacecraft on display in museums. I visited a record number of spacecraft in museums in 2014. This blog post is an attempt to describe a specific (geeky?) travel theme and the diversity of destinations this covers, rather than a story about a destination. Join me on a virtual tour of Europe, Russia, Kazakhstan and the United States, all visited in 2014. Continue reading

The ultimate space bucket list

SpaceBucketList_30Space inspires. Space unites. Every kid wants to be an astronaut. Space is humanity’s final frontier. The people flying into space are modern explorers, their space ships the exploration vessels. Visiting these space ships is an awesome experience. The great story of human space exploration really comes to life when seeing these impressive machines. Very worth taking your children to see and help them imagine the long way we have to go before we become an interplanetary species. Check out the ultimate space bucket list: Continue reading

Space City Baikonur – a travel guide

Baikonur_City_47There are a handful of places in the world that are on top of every space enthusiast’s bucket list. For the true space historian Baikonur has the top spot. This is the town where human’s voyage into space truly began, with the launch of the world’s first satellite, Sputnik 1 in 1957, quickly followed by the launch of the first man in space, Yuri Gagarin in 1961. If these two historic facts are not enough to make you want to visit, then the fact that this is the only place in the world (apart from China) where humans are being launched into space today, should convince you. Baikonur embodies the great past of spaceflight, but still counts as the most important space port in the world today, 59 years after construction began. Continue reading

Moscow Space Sights

Moscow_Space_Sights_33Moscow is a bucket list destination for space travellers. It is the starting point for all real travellers to space, but it is also a great starting point for travellers interested in the history of space flight. Moscow was home to one of the founding fathers of modern space exploration. It was here where Sergei Korolev experimented with rockets as early as the 1930’s. His amateur rocketry club evolved into a leading global space industry that launched the first ever satellite in 1957, followed by the first human into orbit in 1961. Continue reading

Outreach from Space: The ISS Effect

First tweet from spaceJust like many of you I have been following many astronauts during training, mission, return and whatever happens after return. For us spacetweeps it is great to see what it means to be an astronaut. What happens during training, how they prepare for their work in space and the launch, how they experience their time in space and how they communicate with those of us that stay behind on the planet? Obviously social media is the perfect way to keep this communication channel open throughout this entire process. We love to follow our astro_’s on Twitter! Continue reading