Best Places to See the Stars
Sedona is the perfect place to do some stargazing. With great weather almost year-round, you’ll only need to look up to the night sky to see stars, planets, satellites, constellations and other celestial bodies. Stargazing is an observation and study of the stars. It is a great way to explore our universe and just relax while pondering your existence.
Best Time of Year to Stargaze in Sedona
Practically any time of the year is a good time to stargaze. The weather in Sedona usually allows for clear skies except in monsoon season, when rainstorms can occur at any time. Evenings in late June, July and August can be cloudy.
Stargaze in the Dark Sky
Anywhere in Sedona and surrounding area. Sedona is designated as an International Dark Sky Community. That means the city has taken steps to preserve the night sky by implementing programs and ordinances that keep light pollution down. Although the view in town is great, for a better view of the sky, you may want to head out of town.
Along Dry Creek Road and Boynton Canyon
From West Sedona, turn on Dry Creek Road and head out a few miles. There are plenty of trailhead parking areas that would be a great place to stop and explore the sky. The Fay Canyon Trailhead Parking Area, Devil’s Bridge Trailhead and the new Mescal Trailhead are free from the city lights and is really dark on a moonless night. If you are adventurous, you can hike some of the trails to find the perfect spot too. Be careful, you’ll be sharing the experience with wild animals like javelinas, coyotes and mountain lions and creepy crawlers like scorpions and centipedes.
Along Schnebly Hill Road
From Uptown Sedona, take State Route 179 past Tlaquepaque and turn onto Schnebly Hill Road from the traffic circle. Head up this dirt road to avoid the lights in town. You don’t have to go far to find a parking area where you can set up your viewing station.
Outside of Sedona
South of the Village of Oak Creek, you’ll find Beaverhead Flat Road. There are several pullouts along this road that are dark and perfect to view the sky. From West Sedona, head out of town on State Route 89A, there are several forest service roads and pullouts you can use there also.
What to bring with you
You’ll want to bring a blanket along with you and a good flashlight. Depending on the time of year, dress for the occasion by bringing a jacket. Binoculars are great to see things that your naked eye can’t. Bring along your telescope if you have one. Remember to download a star gazing app to your cell phone to help you identify constellations.
Take A Stargazing Tour
Local tour guides in Sedona offer stargazing tours that you might find interesting. Experienced guides will teach you about astronomy at the best locations. These tours may offer comfortable seating, snacks, use of telescopes and/or night vision goggles. Make sure to check ahead if the weather is bad because tours can be cancelled at the last minute.
Stargazing and UFO Tours
Local Sedona tour guides even offer UFO Tours in addition to the stargazing tours. Experienced guides lead you to amazing locations and help you identify unidentified objects. Tours include night vision goggles and lasers. You’re sure to see something that cannot be explained.