star sky

Your Guide to the Best Bay Area Stargazing

The Bay Area is home to San Francisco. This city is the second largest in the Bay Area, following San Jose. Not only does Northern California host some of the state’s biggest cities, but it also boasts views of expansive skies. Appreciate unobstructed views of Mother Nature’s skyscape when you experience the best Bay Area stargazing sites. Even in the big city, you can still travel to mountain peaks and marvel at the night sky with the enthusiasm of an astronomer. Explore more wonderful things to do in the Bay Area’s outdoors and beyond with our complimentary Vacation Guide.

Top 3 Places to Go for Bay Area Stargazing That’s Out of This World

Brush Up on Your Astronomy at Chabot Space & Science Center

Before you go stargazing in the Bay Area, reinvigorate your sense of scientific wonder at the Chabot Space & Science Center. The center is multifunctional and serves as a theatre, museum with interactive science exhibits, an observatory with telescopes, a planetarium, and much more.

There’s also always something new and unique to learn at their events! The center is a community resource whose mission is to educate the public about the Earth we call home and wide, partially unknown Universe that surrounds us. Attend one of the planetarium shows and take the information you work into the field with you as you stargaze in the bay!

Grizzly Peak

Among the Berkeley Hills lies Grizzly Peak summit. This peak has an elevation of 1,759 feet. Drive up to Grizzly Peak for some of the state’s best views of the stars. Come during sunset and gaze in awe at the sky that’s painted in warm hues. As it gets darker, watch as the night sky turns royal blue and the stars become brighter. After you’ve identified some constellations and practiced your skills as an amateur astronomer, look down for stunning views of the city at night.

Mount Tamalpais

Mount Tamalpais, located in Marin County State Park, is the county’s tallest peak. Clocking in at more than 2.5 thousand feet, you can enjoy uninterrupted views of the Golden State’s sky at night. Join San Francisco Amateur Astronomers and Wonderful for the 31st year of Mt. Tam Astronomy Nights. Professional astronomers with advanced degrees and experience in the field lead these sessions to give onlookers a deeper insight and appreciation of astronomy.

This summit in Mount Tamalpais State Park also hosts many great trails for hikers of all skill levels. Whether you’re a beginner or an experienced outdoorsman, challenge yourself on one of these trails. Sit at the summit and take in the beautiful views that surround you. After all, you earned it! For more exciting outdoor exploration check out our favorite hikes near San Francisco.  

Hawk Hill

One of San Francisco’s main attractions is the Golden Gate Bridge. Every year, 10 million people visit this iconic landmark during their Bay Area getaways. However, just across the Golden Gate strait lies another fantastic attraction, Hawk Hill.

This summit in the Marin Headlands peaks at 923 feet and is perfect for stargazing in the Bay Area. It’s even ranked among the top 20 places for stargazing near San Francisco! This particular peak blends iconic views below of the Golden Gate bridge with marvelous views above of the night sky. Due to it’s proximity to the big city, there’s more light pollution, but that just means you can see more than just the stars.

Gaze at What the Purple Orchid Has to Offer

Living room view of the Morning Dove Deluxe King Suite at the Purple Orchid.

Bay Area stargazing is just one way you can unplug and relax in Northern California. Another one of our favorite ways to unwind is by indulging in a spa service at Purple Orchid’s state of the art spa. Here, you can treat yourself to a massage, facial, or body treatment. Browse our rotating monthly specials for deals happening during your getaway.

Don’t limit yourself to just one afternoon of relaxation at the Purple Orchid. Bay Area residents can book a stay in one of our guest rooms for a weekend-long getaway that’s just one hour from the city. Settle into your 900-square foot home away from home with our Morning Dove – Deluxe King Suite. This accommodation has a king-size bed, private living room, bathroom with a tub for two, and access to all of our incredible amenities.  

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