Stargazing is undeniably a cool hobby. No matter who you are, where you came from, what your age is, stargazing is an activity anyone can do. The thing is, stargazing is not only one of the wonderful things you can do for enjoyment. More than a hobby, it is educational, and inspirational. It can evoke the deepest feelings of awe and wonder. It can raise questions, and make you realize how vast the universe is, and how much beauty for us to experience and learn about it.
Another amazing truth about stargazing is that its free! You can see the stars without using any fancy equipment. However, the only thing that can hinder you is your location. Stars are best seen in the dark sky, so if you live in the city where lights are eminent, then you may need to travel to make the most of this hobby.
Travel and stargazing in one? Why not! There are vacation spots in the world that cater to travelers who want to delight with the beauty of the stars. The best locations for stargazing are often normally the most remote areas, places with minimal light pollution, and where darkness is a commodity. Also, since humidity cause haze, dry climate is an advantage. We got you the 5 best destination to go stargazing!
1. The Atacama Desert, Chile
Tagged as the world’s best stargazing site, the Atacama Desert is also the world’s driest place. Some of its place haven’t even received rain since 400 years, the others, haven’t been…ever. An absolute desert, the Atacama may not be rich in water, but during night time, you’ll find its great treasure—the stars.
There are more than a million living in Atacama today. With huge international observatories perching into its desert, many astronomers and scientist inhabit the place, not to mention travelers who are very eager to see the awe-evoking attraction. Visit Atacama and camp under the canopy of stars.
2. Yangtze River Valley, China
In the cities of the modern China, stars may not be as lovely and visible. However, there is one place in the county where are stars can be seen best. In the scenic valley of Yangtze River, travelers are offered the best of both worlds, incredible daytime scenery, and a clear night sky scattered with sparkling stars.
To experience a one of a kind tour in the valley, connect with the local tour operator. Itineraries include Xian and Beijing.
3. Aoraki / Mount Cook Mackenzie Region, New Zealand
Snow-capped mountains surrounding turquoise lakes, the Lake Tekapo in the Mackenzie country is home to Mount John Observatory, one of the best destinations on earth to see the night skies. In 2012, Aoraki Mackenzie was declared an International Dark Sky Reserve, and it is currently the largest in the world. Its skies are almost free of light pollution, making it one of the most beautiful places to visit to see the stars.
The Mount John Observation has 6 telescopes that can reach out to 50 million stars every night. Explore and stargaze in Aoraki with the place’s expert astronomy guides.
4. Cherry Springs State Park, Pennsylvania, USA
Despite being surrounded with urban areas, the Cherry Springs State Park remained to be one of the darkest places in the world as it is surrounded by the 262,000-acre Susquehannock State Forest. The park is situated at the top of the hill and offers a 360 degree view of the sky void of light pollution.
During summer the state park becomes host to travelers who want to see the beautiful star-filled sky in the area. Cherry Springs State Park’s Night Sky Viewing area is always open for public viewing and there are also public parking and information kiosks to guide you in your sightseeing. Sky tours are scheduled and often falls on Friday and Saturday.
5. Death Valley National Park, California, USA
If you want to witness meteor showers or a lunar eclipse, there’s no other place to visit than Death Valley National Park. The park has very little artificial light within its 3.4 million acres span of wilderness. However, what makes the park a certified International Dark Sky Park, is its dry climate and less humidity that made it possible to see a clear night sky.
The sight of stars in the park is incredibly beautiful, but you have to plan your travel if you want to enjoy the most of the place. During summer the place reaches 100 degrees Fahrenheit in temperature so do not visit the park during this season. The best time to go is between November and April.
Stargazing is one of the things in life you have to experience. It is fascinating, and truly a one of a kind.