Welcome to the Highlands Astronomical Society

Highlands Astronomical Society (HAS) is where amateur astonomers and others with an interest in astronomy share their passion for the stars, planets and all other wonders of the Universe.








There is something for everyone, from talks to observing sessions, suitable for all - from absolute beginners to the more advanced astronomer. Most of our activities take place in and around Culloden, where we meet every month and have our own observatory.

Monthly Meetings

We meet monthly, on the first Tuesday of each month at Smithton Culloden Free Church (second Tuesday in January) from 19:15 (for 19:30) - 22:00. All welcome. Your first visit is free. The Youngstars, for ages 8-14, meet at the same Venue, prior to the main Meeting, from 19:00 - 19.30. Directions to the venue are on the 'Find Us' page. 

See the 'Meetings and Events' page for more information.

Moray's Astronomy Club - SIGMA

We have a reciprocal agreement with Moray's Astronomy Club which allows Members to attend each others' Club Meetings without charge.  SIGMA 

Observing Sessions

There are public evening observing sessions on 2-3 Fridays each month throughout the winter at the JSL Observatory located at Culloden Battlefield, opposite the NTS Visitor Centre (directions). We also host Solar Saturdays through the summer months where you can SAFELY view the Sun with specialist equipment. Please be sure to visit the JSL Observatory page before joining us - it will help you to get the most out of your observatory visit.

Observing Guides for the upcoming sessions can be downloaded here        -          Friday Session        Saturday Session

See the 'JSL Observatory' panel in the right-hand column for the date, time and status of our next observing session. This is updated in the hours before a session, so do check back before setting out.



Winter/Spring Astrophotography Challenge - “The Northern Lights”


Over the next couple of months, as we head towards the Spring Equinox there is an increased chance of viewing the Aurora Borealis, or Northern Lights.

Our Observing Team & Astrophotography Group have identified this as another excellent challenge for our members to develop & display their skills.

“Anything goes” in this challenge - long or short exposures, novice or expert, smartphone to DSLR.

The images will be divided into categories and you, our members, will select your favourites (which will be recognised in some appropriate way!).

To help you out there is an excellent aurora alert system - AuroraWatch UK - which you can link to via website, smartphone app, Facebook, or Twitter (https://aurorawatch.lancs.ac.uk)

To upload your images to HAS, ask us for tips & advice, or request your images be processed by our experts, then use our Challenge-dedicated email address challenge@spacegazer.com

It’s also highly recommended you use our Facebook & FB Messenger facilities.

Facebook is updated frequently & can be used to set up discussion threads & posting your images.

Using Messenger, which is confidential & one-to-one, our response rate to individual queries/comments is less than one hour.

You will need to set up your own Facebook account to use these facilities but it is an easy & secure process.

We will keep our website and social media pages updated with Challenge information so keep your eyes peeled and have fun hunting The Northern Lights.


Social media links

Facebook & Messenger: Highlands Astronomical Society

Instagram: highlands.astro

Flickr: HAS Spacegazer



Our Image Gallery with high resolution images and details of image capture & processing is located on Flickr

Latest Images

Also see our social media for more images:

Our older images can still be viewed at

HAS Archived Gallery Index

Observing Guide Series - Weekly Binocular Objects

Series of observing guides focusing on binocular astronomy, with a new object introduced every week. Suitable for everyone, from complete beginners to more experienced observers - anyone with a binocular in fact!

Latest Edition:


Fancy a "small" scope that thinks it's bigger than it is? Want it with a posh dual-speed Crayford focuser and a triplet ED lens assembly? Ok? Want it with a carbon-fibre tube? Well, alright then: here's the TS TLAPO906T ED Triplet refractor. Read the review of it by Antony McEwan.

Space Exploration News Update – May 2019 by Pat Williams

  • India aims to be 1st country to land rover on Moon's south pole.
  • Jeff Bezos says Blue Origin will land humans on moon by 2024.
  • China's Chang'e-4 probe resumes work for sixth lunar day.
  • NASA awards Artemis contract for lunar gateway power.
  • From airport to spaceport as UK targets horizontal spaceflight.
  • Russian space sector plagued by astronomical corruption.
  • Links to other space and astronomy news published in May 2019.

 This and all previous editions can be accessed HERE



Click for Map

Latest Page Updates

JSL Observatory
Pop-Up Solar Observatory at Inverness Leisure Centre

A very successful afternoon was had last Saturday.

Watch this space for notice of our next pop-up observatory!

Meet us, find out what we do, hear about our club activities, look at telescopes, astrophotographs, 3D-printed accessories. Take part in fun activities.

** View the Sun through a special solar telescope **

Like what you see? You can JOIN OUR CLUB on the day, right there & then!

All welcome!
Directions can be found href="http://www.spacegazer.com/index.asp?pageid=94482">here, and a list of planned observing sessions is on the href="http://www.spacegazer.com/index.asp?pageid=94984">JSL Observatory page. Please check back here for the latest status before setting out.