We noticed that you're using an unsupported browser. The TripAdvisor website may not display properly.
We support the following browsers:
Windows: Internet Explorer, Mozilla Firefox, Google Chrome. Mac: Safari.

Kitt Peak National Observatory

Highway 86 to 386 for 12 miles, Sells, AZ 85634
520 318 8726
Website
Improve this listing
92%
Ranked #1 of 1 Attractions in Sells
Certificate of Excellence 2014
Type: Observatories/ Planetariums, Reservations, National Parks, Landmarks
Activities: Group tours/walking tour
More attraction details
Attraction details
Owner description: Located 56 miles southwest of Tucson on the Tohono O'odham Indian Reservation, the observatory is a working research station situated high above on Kitt Peak.
Useful Information: Activities for older children
Write a Review

170 reviews from our community

Visitor rating
    125
    31
    10
    4
    0
Date | Rating
  • Dutch first
  • English first
  • French first
  • German first
  • Any
English first
Ottawa, Canada
Top Contributor
304 reviews 304 reviews
75 attraction reviews
140 helpful votes 140 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed November 16, 2014

We were forced by time constraints to drive up in low cloud, so the views from the mountain top were poor, but on a clear day, they must be great. The various telescope domes are well labelled and described on signage. There are also a very large solar telescope (with 300ft shaft into the mountain, and a good-sized radiotelescope right... More

Was this review helpful? Yes
Bodmin, United Kingdom
1 review
2 of 5 stars Reviewed November 16, 2014

We have just arrived back in the UK after our holiday in USA. I ordered tickets for myself and husband to see the telescopes and view the galaxies on our lifetime trip to the Arizona desert all the way from our remote village in Cornwall, UK. I paid a deposit a month ago and on a clear, not a single... More

Was this review helpful? Yes
Anoka
Top Contributor
123 reviews 123 reviews
71 attraction reviews
52 helpful votes 52 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed November 16, 2014

In a nut shell. A 12 mile drive up a 7000 foot mountain on a winding road with large drop offs but lanes are normal width. at the top you will find an accumulation of large telescopes of which three are open to the public. Do not expect to look through one or even see them closer than through a... More

Was this review helpful? Yes
Senior Contributor
26 reviews 26 reviews
3 attraction reviews
3 helpful votes 3 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed November 3, 2014

This is a cool place. We paid for the guide (docent), but would not do it again. You can do a self-guided tour and save the money and it is all pretty well explained on all the signs and displays. You can see for miles and miles (even without the telescopes. The history and the various universities that are involved... More

Was this review helpful? Yes
Belfast, Northern Ireland
Top Contributor
242 reviews 242 reviews
61 attraction reviews
209 helpful votes 209 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed October 31, 2014

We arrived just in time for the first tour of the day at 10am (it might only be 12 miles to the summit, but leave plenty of time as it's a slow drive). It quickly became apparent that we were the only two participants - so it was, essentially, a private tour. Our volunteer guide was enthusiastic and knowledgeable and... More

Was this review helpful? Yes 1
Homestead, Florida
Contributor
12 reviews 12 reviews
5 attraction reviews
14 helpful votes 14 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed October 30, 2014

We were fortunate to go when the solar eclipse and boy was that such a special treat. We got to Kitt Peak (which is a bit of a drive from Tucson) but got there just in time to see this phenomenon. They were selling the viewing glasses in the gift shop and also 2 huge telescopes to view. All I... More

Was this review helpful? Yes
Magnolia, Texas
Top Contributor
136 reviews 136 reviews
47 attraction reviews
102 helpful votes 102 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed October 24, 2014

Check out the Observatory's great website for all the information you'll need to plan your visit. We went during the day, but I wish we had had more time and better weather to appreciate it. We got a driving pass because some of us couldn't hike the distances around the summit. We had access to four telescopes, and just to... More

Was this review helpful? Yes
Toronto, Canada
1 review
5 of 5 stars Reviewed October 17, 2014

The nightly observation tour is worth the time, money, and white knuckle feeling driving up to the top of the hill. Learned how to use those constellation maps, how to (properly) use binoculars, what to look for in a sunset, and more. I only wish I had come at least an hour before the nightly observation program.

Was this review helpful? Yes
Phoenix
Senior Contributor
43 reviews 43 reviews
27 attraction reviews
35 helpful votes 35 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed October 16, 2014

We drove 3.5 hrs from Phoenix one Saturday afternoon to Kitt Peak for the Nightly Observation program and was absolutely mesmerized by the visit. The observatory is open during the day as well; but the night observation program - which we booked for - is completely unique. You start off with a fantastic view of a glorious sunset, then get... More

Was this review helpful? Yes 1
Sydney, Australia
Top Contributor
52 reviews 52 reviews
9 attraction reviews
32 helpful votes 32 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed October 6, 2014

Fascinating discovery and looking at the night sky - what you can see with the naked eye, binoculars, and telescopes. Book ahead to get the night observation.

Was this review helpful? Yes

Travelers who viewed Kitt Peak National Observatory also viewed

 

Been to Kitt Peak National Observatory? Share your experiences!

Write a Review Add Photos & Videos

Owners: What's your side of the story?

Register now for free — and start getting automatic notification of new reviews, responding to traveler feedback, adding new photos to your listing and much more.

Manage your listing