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Where to stargaze around San Antonio in the fall

hill-country-stars-WP Resize

The stars at night are big and bright… you know the rest. 💫 | 📸: @mallorydavisphotography

Table of Contents

It’s true, they say everything is bigger in Texas — including the night’s sky. If you have a love for the cosmos or like to shoot astrophotography, this guide will help you find the best spots around the 210 for your intergalactic viewing needs.

Enchanted Rock State Natural Area

Considered an International Dark Sky Park, this natural area boasts some incredible views of the sky. You can join a park ranger Fri., Nov. 5-Sat., Nov. 6 for their Stargazing 101 event — no hiking involved.

Pro tip: Book your tickets in advance to secure your spot. Editor Ivan learned that the hard way.

Guadalupe River State Park

The Guadalupe River isn’t just for tubing — you can look forward to a Star Party on Sat., Nov. 13 with members of the San Antonio Astronomical Association on site to help guide those in pointing out constellations + planets. Visitors will meet up at the overflow parking lot — no registration required.

enchanted-rock-stars

There’s something so enchanting about astrophotography in Texas. 💫 | 📸: @grantdpittman

Finally, here are our tips for what we wish we knew on our first time stargazing:
General + Attire

  • Visit during an “observing season” — lasting from daylight saving time in November through March.
  • Time your trip around a new moon to minimize light pollution and maximize your view of the Milky Way. Plan ahead by checking out this dark sky calendar.
  • Boots, hats, gloves + blankets are a must for those winter nights — even Texas can get a bit chilly. Thermal undergarments can make a big difference when it comes to keeping warm.
  • Wear pants + long sleeve tops in case of bugs or thorny areas if hiking at a park.

Gear

  • Pack a “red” flashlight — it can take up to 20-30 minutes for eyes to adjust from regular, bright light. Don’t have one? Make your own with a piece of red plastic + a rubber band over a normal flashlight.
  • Dust off those old binoculars or a DSLR camera if you’re looking to capture a closer view at the night sky. Check out the Texas Park’s astrophotography guide for mastering those perfect starscape shots.
  • Bring a container for water — the closest faucet might be a ways from your viewing location.
  • Choose a lightweight backpack and stuff with “camping essentials” — first aid supplies, medication, snacks, etc.

We can’t wait to hit the road and see the star-lit night for ourselves. Watching the stars in the summer? Check out our guide. Stay safe + happy viewing, San Antonio.

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