Smithsonian Journeys Dispatches

The Skies of Mauna Kea

The summit of Mauna Kea on the Island of Hawaii  hosts the world's largest astronomical observatory, with thirteen telescopes operated by astronomers from eleven countries.

Mauna Kea is unique as an astronomical observing site. Its dry air, clear nights, and stable atmosphere make it possible to observe the skies more frequently and with more detail than anywhere else in the world. Both its distance from city lights and the cooperation of the locals in keeping lights low provide the observatory with a very dark sky, allowing astronomers to see further than ever - almost to the edge of the observable Universe.

If this is the stuff of your stargazing dreams, join us this May for a night of stargazing on Mauna Kea, along with several days of education, exploration, and relaxation around Hawaii. Limited seats are still available on our Astronomy in Hawaii experience.

Where do you like to go stargazing?