New Mexico Dark Skies – A Gateway to the Stars

New Mexico is not called the Land of Enchantment for no reason. It’s truly dark skies are something mesmerizing to be relished. Whether you are an astrotourist or a novice star gazer, there are few places in the world to view night skies like in rural New Mexico! High elevation + low population densities make New Mexico the perfect place to see the stars.

Did you know that New Mexico was one of the first states in the US with a law to protect our night skies? As a result, New Mexico is home to several Gold and Silver-Tier Dark Sky Parks. Visit to see just a few. One of which was the first international Dark Sky Sanctuary in the Northern Hemisphere, located right here near us in the Gila National Forest – Cosmic Campground. As darkness falls, planets and stars emerge.

Experience unobstructed views in all directions from almost anywhere in rural New Mexico. Learn the celestial cultural practices of the Puebloan people or take a laser-guided constellation tour at one of the Dark Sky Parks. Or, if you are lucky enough to call New Mexico home, pull up a chair on you very own back porch and check out the universe above.

If observing the world above is of interest to you, there are several groups that gather for monthly/yearly star parties. The “Enchanted Skies Star Party” offers a unique astronomy experience that can’t be beat. The Amateur Astronomy Club meets every month at Oliver Lee State Park.

Lets not for get about Observatories

New Mexico is also home to several observatories, the Very Large Array being one of them. Located off Highway 60, between Datil and Magdalena, you will see a mass of huge radio dishes—27 of them, to be exact. Galaxy, black holes; researchers are using the Array to study all sorts of astronomic objects.

Comet NEOWISE – seen March 27, 2020

With dry climate and clean air, New Mexico’s clear nights make for a memorable star gazing experience! They have over 300 clear nights per year, and you will clearly see the brilliance of the skies. Come see what the constellations hold for yourself in New Mexico!