Kielder Observatory is a public outreach astronomical facility located in Kielder Forest, in some of the darkest skies in Europe. Northumberland International Dark Sky Park is designated by the International Dark Sky Association and is England's first and Europe's largest International Dark Sky Park.
Located in Northumberland, England. the observatory is situated just a few miles from the Scottish border high upon Black Fell near James Turrell’s Kielder Skyspace. The site was chosen as one of the locations in the UK which has the least amount of intrusive light pollution.
The primary function of the observatory is outreach via public events. Our goal is to bring in members of the public of all ages from school children in primary school and upwards with an aim to engage in discussions and observations of the Universe. We do this in a way that is friendly, informative and interesting through our amazing team of astronomers, guest speakers and volunteers.
Visiting the observatory
The observatory is only open when an event is being run, details of which can be found on our events page. At other times members of the public are welcome to walk up and roam around the outside of the observatory building during the daytime. Our events usually run in the late afternoons and evenings and on occasion during the summer months in the daytime for families, which are loads of fun too.
When events are taking place the observatory is only accessible to those who have booked in advance, numbers are limited due to health and safety and enable us to give our guests ample time at the telescopes. Our expert astronomers will be on hand to show you how our telescopes work and how you can best view through them, no previous experience is required! For specialist event evenings such as astro-photography nights you are welcome to bring along your own equipment and use this at the observatory, we’d be happy to offer you our help and guidance.
Note: Whilst we encourage visitors to walk around the outside of the observatory during the daytime, to take in the magnificent views of the surrounding Kielder region, the observatory itself is only open to members of the public who have booked with us via our events page.