Travel Agents

Stellar places to stargaze around the world

Apr 04 2017

So you may or may not have seen the northern lights yet, but you can surely visit these phenomenal places for a stunning and mind boggling view of the night sky. Here’s Holidayme’s list of Top places!

· Atacama Desert, Chile

Being one of the driest places on earth (it receives only a millimetre of rain every year), Chile’s Atacama Desert is a cloudless landscape. Add to that an altitude of 8,200 feet and what do you get? One of Earth’s best places to stargaze from!

Holidayme Recommendation – Go to the Paranal Observatory and enjoy an undisturbed view of the Southern Hemisphere sky. You have the option of either staying in the luxury of a hotel nearby or camping under a canopy of stars.

· Tenerife, Canary Islands, Spain

Apart from being a very popular holiday destination thanks to its pristine beaches and volcanic mountains, Tenerife has recently been named one of the best locations in the world for star-gazing because of its low pollution level and unspoiled night-sky conditions.

v Holidayme Recommendation – Leave for the famed Tenerife observatory or simply set up a camp in the Teide National Park (awarded the title of ‘Starlight Tourist Destination’ and ‘Starlight Reserve’) to see our Milky Way, nebulae and shooting stars.

· Kerry, Ireland

Ireland’s Kerry County is the latest addition to the small list of Gold Tier International Dark Sky Reserves around the world. Situated on a picture-perfect landscape, with Kerry Mountains on one side and Atlantic Ocean on the other, Kerry International Dark Sky Reserve gives you a spectacular view of the dark sky, and also offers basic astronomy classes and workshops throughout the year.

v Holidayme Recommendation – Check into one of the many guesthouses, self-catering homes, or caravans available for stargazers in the Kerry International Dark Sky Reserve.

· Hawaii, USA

At an altitude of almost 14,000 feet above the sea level, the volcanic summit of Mauna Kea holds a high risk of frosty temperature and altitude sickness, but wow! Is the view from the peak spectacular or what? Besides Atacama, this dormant volcano is a heaven for professional as well as amateur astronomers.

v Holidayme Recommendation – Make an early drop in at the Mauna Kea Visitor Centre (it closes by 10 pm!), or prepare for a memorable camping night at the nearby Haleakala National Park.

· Aoraki / Mount Cook, New Zealand

This mountainous country, aside from being a popular tourist destination, is also home to the Aoraki Mackenzie Dark Sky Reserve, world’s largest dark sky reserve, spanning nearly 1,700 square miles.

v Holidayme Recommendation – Choose from any of the four companies offering stargazing trips to the reserve located in the picturesque Mackenzie Basin.

· Galloway Forest Park, Scotland

At Scotland’s Galloway Forest Park (did we mention it was the United Kingdom’s first dark sky destination?), you can have a heavenly glimpse of more than 7000 stars, constellations and planets post sun down.

v Holidayme Recommendation – Vote for the Scottish Dark Sky Observatory if you’re looking for professional guidance on astronomy. Else, just sleep under the stars for a change!