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Kitt Peak National Observatory

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Address: Highway 86 to 386 for 12 miles, Sells, AZ 85634
Phone Number: 520 318 8726
Website
Activities: Group tours/walking tour
Description: Located 56 miles southwest of Tucson on the Tohono O'odham Indian...
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.
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TripAdvisor Reviewer Highlights

Read all 201 reviews
Visitor rating
  • 137
    Excellent
  • 48
    Very good
  • 11
    Average
  • 5
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  • 0
    Terrible
Starry night

We visited the observatory with our 10 year old grandson and took part in the Night Observing Program. We arrived a little earlier than the required time and did not immediately... read more

4 of 5 starsReviewed April 23, 2015
pbahab
,
San Diego, California
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201 Reviews from our TripAdvisor Community

Date | Rating
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English first
San Diego, California
Contributor
19 reviews 19 reviews
4 helpful votes 4 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed April 23, 2015 NEW

We visited the observatory with our 10 year old grandson and took part in the Night Observing Program. We arrived a little earlier than the required time and did not immediately realize that the visitor center was open so we sat and waited until we saw others going in. The NOP is definitely worth the trip up the mountain. The... More 

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Clinton, Washington
Top Contributor
327 reviews 327 reviews
167 attraction reviews
196 helpful votes 196 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed April 21, 2015 NEW

Really, really enjoyed the NOP tour. With that cold wind blowing strongly, dress warm means wear gloves, a stocking cap or ear band, extra layers, hiking boots with wool socks, and a good winter coat. You arrive at 5:00pm and get a boxed lunch--included in the admission price. Then watch the spurt of green just as the sun disappears into... More 

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London, United Kingdom
Contributor
14 reviews 14 reviews
5 attraction reviews
3 helpful votes 3 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed April 11, 2015 via mobile

We went on the NOP to see the stars as we live in London - not many stars there to see. Our three excellent guides, Jeronimo, David and Blythe, were enthusiastic and were full of facts. We started off looking through one of the two telescopes set up for visitors to see through, accompanied by a description of what we... More 

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worthing
Top Contributor
157 reviews 157 reviews
38 attraction reviews
263 helpful votes 263 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed April 11, 2015

Access is not bad here but it is hilly and at high altitude so you might struggle without a helpful pusher most of the telescopes have steps but it is worth a trip and there is a film to watch. You can ask for a special pass to take your car to each telescope to view from the outside.

Was this review helpful? Yes 1
Top Contributor
107 reviews 107 reviews
43 attraction reviews
33 helpful votes 33 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed April 5, 2015

They warn you it is going to be cold...believe them. The program has several parts - an inside orientation to star charts etc and exteior component looking at the night sky with binolulars and some time observing enties through a telescope. All of it is interesting but the second two are outside at 7000 feet - temp in the 40s... More 

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Newark, IL
Senior Contributor
45 reviews 45 reviews
20 attraction reviews
19 helpful votes 19 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed April 1, 2015

We arrived early so we could go on all three offered tours of the telescopes on Kitt Peak. The docents were interesting and informative. We were able to view the sun through telescopes set up for visitors. The views from the top of Kitt Peak and on the drive up were beautiful. Next time we come to Arizona, we will... More 

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Thunder Bay, Canada
Top Contributor
109 reviews 109 reviews
55 attraction reviews
45 helpful votes 45 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed March 26, 2015

Well worth the drive! gorgeous scenery especially with the change in elevation. Looking at the planets through the telescope is a humbling experience. It puts everything into perspective. Excellent docent...Joyce? a former teacher explained the science and physics in plain language

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Reviewer
4 reviews 4 reviews
3 attraction reviews
4 helpful votes 4 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed March 25, 2015

After living on Tucson's west side for three years and looking at Kitt Peak in the distance we finally made the trip and I'm so glad we did. I'm not a scientist but I loved this place! First off the drive up the mountain is beautiful. There are pull outs for pictures and a picnic area. Kitt Peak is a... More 

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Muskogee, Oklahoma
Top Contributor
61 reviews 61 reviews
40 attraction reviews
28 helpful votes 28 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed March 25, 2015

The Kitt Peak Observatory is an educational experience. The magnitude of stars visible is quite amazing. I booked the spaces for our tour in advance, and I've heard that these fill up quickly. The drive from Tucson is about 1 1/2 hours, but the final few miles up the mountain is dramatic. The elevation is over 8000 feet. Upon arrival... More 

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Tucson, Arizona
Contributor
16 reviews 16 reviews
5 attraction reviews
2 helpful votes 2 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed March 19, 2015

It was a beautiful drive up to the peak. You can do a walking tour on your own and they even have an MP3 audio tour you can download on their website for free. There are clean public restrooms, benches all along the way. Be prepared to walk quite a bit. You are at 6500+ ft so if you have... More 

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Typical questions asked:
  • Do I have to buy a ticket for my infant?
  • How do I get there using public transportation?
  • Is there a restaurant or café onsite?