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10 Of The Best STARGAZING Spots in Texas 😍

There’s nothing quite like seeing a sky full of stars, and even better, the Milky Way.

And luckily Texas is one of the best states in the US for stargazing.

But where are the best places to go?

Well in this post we’re revealing 10 of the best places in Texas to see a sky covered in stars.

Here’s a map graphic of the places we’ll be covering.

stargazing spots texas map graphic (1)
Google Maps

We’ve also included a few bonus locations at the end that aren’t shown on this map.

Let’s quickly go over some stargazing tips before you set off so you don’t waste your night (feel free to skip this section if you already know what you’re doing.)

General Tips For Stargazing

Remember to use a star map to help you identify constellations, stars, nebulae, galaxies, and planets.

Only use a flashlight with a red light to help keep your night vision sharp!

Make sure to visit during a new moon for the best stargazing conditions. 

the milky way

Give your eyes time to adjust.

It takes about half an hour for eyes to go through ‘dark adaptation’ and you’ll see many more stars after this.

Don’t ruin this by going on your phone and seeing the bright white screen. 

If you want to see the Milky Way you should know that the timing and location depends on the time of year.

Use an app like Starwalk 2 to prepare for your visit so you can get your timings right.

1. Palo Duro Canyon State Park

Location: Randall County, near Canyon, Texas

Palo Duro Canyon State Park, known as the “Grand Canyon of Texas,” offers more than just breathtaking daytime views. 

By night, it transforms into a magnificent arena for stargazing. 

The park’s rugged landscape, with its deep canyons and towering rock formations, creates a dramatic backdrop for night skies filled with stars.

The canyon’s remote location away from city lights ensures dark skies that are perfect for viewing the Milky Way and other celestial wonders. 

The park occasionally hosts stargazing events where rangers bring telescopes and guide you through the night sky, pointing out constellations, planets, and galaxies. 

These events are great for everyone, from complete beginners to experienced astronomers.

For a more solitary experience, set up a telescope at one of the park’s campsites. 

The Juniper Cliffside or Mesquite Camp areas are particularly good choices with their unobstructed sky views. 

During The Day

Ride a horse through the second-largest canyon in the United States, or catch a live performance of the musical drama “TEXAS” in the outdoor amphitheater.

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2. Copper Breaks State Park

Location: Hardeman County, Texas

Copper Breaks State Park, located in Quanah, is a certified International Dark Sky Park, making it an ideal place for stargazing.

Here, the skies are so dark that the Milky Way casts a visible shadow on the ground, offering a rare and breathtaking spectacle.

When visiting Copper Breaks, you can partake in monthly “Star Walks” where rangers guide you through the constellations and share fascinating astronomical facts. 

These walks make for a fun and educational night out, perfect for families or anyone interested in learning more about the universe. 

For a more personal experience, bring your telescope or binoculars and head to one of the park’s designated stargazing areas for perfect views.

This park is not just about stargazing; it’s also about appreciating the natural world under the cover of night. 

Be sure to join one of the night-time wildlife walks to see how the landscape changes after dark. 

During The Day

Try your hand at fishing in the lake, or explore the park’s rugged terrain and see if you can spot the official Texas longhorn herd.

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3. Davis Mountains State Park

Location: Jeff Davis County, Texas

Davis Mountains State Park is known for its beautiful mountainous landscapes and, of course, its incredible night skies. 

The park is located in one of the most remote parts of Texas, which helps keep the skies dark and full of stars. 

It’s a favorite spot not only for campers but also for astronomers.

In the area you can visit the famous McDonald Observatory, which hosts “Star Parties” where you can look through telescopes and learn about the universe from astronomers. 

These events are great for anyone curious about space and the stars.

You can set up your telescope at the Indian Lodge hotel or at one of the scenic overlooks in the park. 

The park also offers night hikes and other educational programs where you can learn more about the stars while enjoying the beautiful, natural surroundings.

During The Day

Spend your day bird watching, hiking up to scenic overlooks, or visiting the historic Indian Lodge built in the 1930s.

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4. Big Bend Ranch State Park

Location: Presidio County, Texas

big bend ranch state park stargazing flickr
Gary Nored / Flickr

Big Bend Ranch State Park is another spectacular stargazing location in Texas. 

As the largest state park in Texas, it offers wide-open skies that are perfect for observing the stars. 

Like its nearby neighbor, Big Bend National Park, this park also boasts the prestigious International Dark Sky Park designation. 

This means you’re guaranteed some of the darkest and most stunning night skies.

In fact, Big Bend Ranch State Park is so good for stargazing that it’s a Class 1 on the bortle scale and it’s the only place on this list that has that designation.

Class 1 is the highest rating on the bortle scale which ranks places based on how good they are for seeing the stars.

So Big Bend Ranch State Park is basically the best place on this list to see celestial objects.

When you visit, you might want to try photographing the stars as the park’s vast, unobstructed landscapes provide a fantastic backdrop for night sky photography. 

There are also special stargazing events and star parties where experts come with powerful telescopes to give you a tour of the cosmos. 

These are perfect opportunities to see planets, distant stars, and even galaxies.

To get the best stargazing experience, consider setting up camp at one of the park’s primitive campsites. 

Without nearby city lights, you’ll enjoy an unbeatable view of the Milky Way if the conditions are right.

During The Day

Explore over 238 miles of multi-use trails on bike, horseback, or on foot to discover beautiful vistas and remote desert landscapes.

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5. Big Bend National Park

Location: Brewster County, Texas

big bend national park star gazing

If you’re eager to gaze at a sky bursting with stars, Big Bend National Park is a dream come true. 

Far from city lights, its dark skies offer some of the clearest views of the stars in Texas. 

Here, you can see the Milky Way stretch across the sky on a clear night, and you might even spot a shooting star or two!

Big Bend National Park is known for its minimal light pollution, making it an exceptional spot for stargazing. 

big bend national park stargazing

The park even holds the honor of being named an International Dark Sky Park. 

You can join guided night sky programs that the park offers, where rangers help you explore constellations, planets, and distant galaxies through telescopes.

big bend national park stargazing

You can set up a telescope at one of the park’s campgrounds, like Chisos Basin or Rio Grande Village, or simply lay back on a blanket and enjoy the celestial show. 

During The Day

During the day, you can hike through scenic trails, take a dip in the hot springs, or enjoy a canoe trip down the Rio Grande.

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6. Seminole Canyon State Park & Historic Site

Location: Val Verde County, near Comstock, Texas

Seminole Canyon State Park & Historic Site combines rich history with stellar night-sky viewing.

This park, known for its ancient rock art, also boasts some of the darkest skies in Texas, making it an ideal spot for stargazing. 

The absence of nearby city lights ensures that you can enjoy a clear view of the cosmos.

At Seminole Canyon, you can participate in ranger-led moonlight tours that not only explore the historical significance of the area but also focus on the astronomical features visible from the canyon. 

These tours are a unique way to experience both history and astronomy hand-in-hand. 

Additionally, the park often holds stargazing sessions where experts bring telescopes and share their knowledge about the stars, planets, and other celestial bodies.

For the optimal stargazing experience, set up near the visitor center or at one of the designated viewing areas along the canyon rim. 

Here, the open sky serves as a perfect canvas for the Milky Way and meteor showers. 

Don’t forget to check the park’s schedule for special astronomical events and bring your own stargazing gear, like binoculars or a telescope, to enhance your visit. 

Seminole Canyon is a place where the night sky tells as much of a story as the ancient grounds.

During The Day

Take a guided tour to view ancient rock art in the canyon, or hike the trails that overlook the Rio Grande.

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7. Devil’s River State Natural Area

Location: Val Verde County, Texas

Devil’s River State Natural Area is a secluded gem located deep in the heart of Texas, offering some of the clearest night skies in the state. 

Its status as a remote wilderness area means that light pollution is nearly nonexistent, making it an ideal spot for stargazing and observing the Milky Way in all its glory.

The natural area is known for its pristine conditions for skywatching, especially for those who enjoy the solitude of nature. 

Visitors can participate in night sky photography sessions, capturing the stunning beauty of the stars against the serene backdrop of the Devil’s River and rugged Texas landscape. 

The park also offers informal stargazing gatherings where fellow astronomy enthusiasts share their telescopes, allowing you to glimpse distant planets and star clusters.

If you’re planning a visit, consider timing your trip during a meteor shower or when the moon is new to maximize the darkness of the skies. 

You can set up camp at one of the designated sites and spend the night under a canopy of stars. 

Devil’s River State Natural Area offers a profound connection with the cosmos in one of the most untouched settings in Texas.

During The Day

Paddle along the pristine Devil’s River, or try spotting some of the rare bird species that call this area home. 

Don’t miss Dolan Falls, one of the most remote waterfalls in Texas.

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8. Kickapoo Cavern State Park

Location: Edwards County, near Brackettville, Texas

Kickapoo Cavern State Park is not just a hotspot for cave enthusiasts but also a prime spot for stargazing. 

Located away from urban light pollution, the park offers a dark sky that reveals the Milky Way and countless stars on clear nights. 

The park’s rugged landscape adds a unique silhouette against the night sky, enhancing your stargazing experience.

You can join the “Star Parties” hosted here, where rangers help you set up telescopes and guide you through the celestial sights. 

These parties are an excellent opportunity for you to learn more about astronomy and even get a closer look at specific stars, planets, and galaxies. 

If you prefer a more private experience, there are plenty of quiet spots throughout the park where you can set up a blanket and a telescope on your own.

During The Day

Tour one of the 20 known caves within the park, or cycle the scenic park roads surrounded by wildflowers and wildlife.

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9. South Llano River State Park

Location: Kimble County, near Junction, Texas

South Llano River State Park, near Junction, Texas, is a serene getaway where the river and hills meet the starlit sky. 

The park’s commitment to maintaining a natural dark environment ensures that stargazers have a spectacular view of the cosmos.

The park offers a tranquil escape where you can set up a telescope along the riverbank or participate in ranger-led night sky programs. 

These programs are fantastic for beginners and offer a chance to learn about different constellations, spot visible planets, and even catch meteor showers on the right nights.

One of the best times to visit is during the new moon when the sky is at its darkest and the stars are the most vivid. 

Bring a star map and a comfy chair, and prepare to be amazed by the clarity of the heavens. 

The park also provides “red light” areas, where visitors can use red-filtered flashlights to navigate without disturbing their night vision or the experience of others.

During The Day

Tube or kayak down the South Llano River, or unwind by birdwatching in one of the park’s bird blinds.

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10. Enchanted Rock State Natural Area

Location: Gillespie County, Texas 

Enchanted Rock State Natural Area offers a unique stargazing experience with its massive pink granite dome that is perfect for watching the stars. 

This natural landmark rises above Central Texas and provides a dramatic, dark backdrop for night sky viewing.

Like other places on this list, the area is recognized as a Dark Sky Park, highlighting its commitment to preserving the night sky for all to enjoy. 

Visitors can participate in night sky parties where telescopes are set up, and volunteers help point out constellations and planets. 

It’s a fantastic way to see the rings of Saturn or the craters of the moon up close.

For a cozy stargazing setup, spread a blanket over the ground and lie back to watch the stars. 

The park often hosts guided night hikes where you can learn about nocturnal wildlife and see the landscape under a starlit sky. 

Make sure to check the park’s schedule for these special events.

During The Day

Challenge yourself with a climb up the massive pink granite dome at Enchanted Rock and enjoy a picnic at its summit.

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🎁 Some Bonus Locations 🎁

So that’s 9 places where you’re sure to get an amazing stargazing experience.

But they’re not the only places in Texas where you can see stars easily.

Here are a few more bonus places that are worth checking out too.

Canyon of the Eagles Resort

This resort is recognized as an ideal stargazing spot because it’s located in a designated dark sky area, offering nightly stargazing tours with an astronomer and large telescopes.

Dripping Springs

Known as the first International Dark Sky Community in Texas, Dripping Springs offers exceptional stargazing opportunities due to its stringent lighting ordinances that minimize light pollution.

Matagorda Island

With its remote location and minimal development, Matagorda Island offers unspoiled dark skies ideal for stargazing, away from the light pollution of the mainland.

Dinosaur Valley State Park in Glen Rose

The park’s location away from city lights and its clear, dark skies make it a popular spot for stargazing, especially during organized night sky events.

Lost Maples State Natural Area

This natural area is known for its exceptionally dark skies, making it perfect for viewing the Milky Way and other astronomical objects.

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Tom Jackson

Tom was born in San Antonio but spent most of his childhood in Dallas, he has lived in several cities across Texas and joined the team in 2024 to create travel guides on Texas.

Learn more about the Traveller's Elixir Team.

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