Lonely Planet Writer

Did you know? 10 amazing facts about the Moon Landings on 20th July 1969

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Excerpt from Daredevil's Guide to Outer Space

We're celebrating the 50th anniversary of the Moon Landing on 20th July by running a creative competition. Your child needs to draw or write a space scene for the chance to win a fabulous set of space-related toys from Learning Resources and books from Lonely Planet Kids.

To get their artistic and literary juices flowing we've teamed up with the clever people at Learning Resources to share 10 amazing facts about the Moon Landing and our relationship with space.

Did you know?

1) The Moon is roughly 220,575 miles from the Earth. It’s so far away, it would take you about eight years to walk there! That’s why we use spaceships.

2) The Apollo space program was named after the Greek god of light and music.

3) The Earth has earthquakes and the Moon has moonquakes, which are exactly the same as earthquakes except they are on the moon! The Apollo astronauts left devices called seismometers on the lunar surface so we could measure these moonquakes from Earth; they give us a lot of information about what the inside of the Moon is like.

4) Moon dust can be as sharp as glass!

5) The Apollo 11 astronauts Neil Armstrong and Buzz Aldrin, who were the first people to walk on the moon in 1969, planted their American flag a bit too close to the Lunar lander; they knocked it over when they took off to come home!

6) Also when they were leaving, Buzz accidentally broke the switch they needed to press in order to take off! Luckily, their felt-tip pen fitted into the hole, and they used that to switch on the engine.

7) Apollo 14 astronaut Alan Shepard took a golf ball along with him to the Moon. Because gravity is weaker on the Moon, he was able to hit the ball over two miles!

8) The last three Apollo Missions which put men on the moon used lunar rovers (small cars) to allow the astronauts to explore further afield. The rovers were built like dirt buggies to accommodate the bumpy ride!

9) The Curiosity Rover is a little robot car which has been exploring a crater on Mars since 2011. It runs on a nuclear battery, and once sang Happy Birthday to itself.

10) There's so much disused space equipment orbiting Earth that it's like flying through a giant rubbish dump. It's estimated that there are 20,000 pieces larger than a softball and as they are all moving they can cause substantial damage if you hit one.

Your budding astronaut can learn more about the Moon Landings on this post from our partners Learning Resources too.

With all this additional knowledge about the Moon Landings, it's time to get involved in our creative competition!

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