What Is Dark Sky Park Camping?

Have you ever looked up at the night sky and thought: This would make an exceptional activity for camping? If so, then a stargazing camping trip is just what you need for your next outdoor adventure! 

Whether this is your first time camping under the stars or pursuing a new adventure for your family, this article will provide you with all the information you need to set up your nighttime adventure. Read on to learn more about dark sky park camping and discover the best locations for a memorable stargazing experience.

What Is Dark Sky Park Camping?

Dark sky park camping is camping in a designated park known for its unique stellar features.

The International Dark-Sky Association defines dark sky places as “land possessing an exceptional or distinguished quality of starry nights.” Dark sky campsites are unfettered by artificial light pollution, making them prime locations for gazing into the night sky.

Camping activities under the night sky are no different than those of standard camping. You just have the luxury of witnessing natural scenery under a star-filled sky. 

Fun Facts About Camping Under The Stars

What-Is-Dark-Sky-Park-Camping-1.jpgTo help you prepare for your first astronomical camping adventure, here are some fun facts about camping under the stars.
  • According to the Guide to Exploring the Universe, the human eye can see as far as 2.5 million light-years away without any optical instruments.
  • Nearly 70% of animals are nocturnal, meaning that they are active during the night.
  • Some wildlife is more sensitive to light and sound at night, so it’s important to plan your nighttime activities accordingly. 
  • All you need for stargazing is a pair of binoculars.
  • If you camp in the U.S., you can see the North Star called Polaris — the brightest star of the constellation Ursa Minor.

Best Dark Sky Park Camping Sites in the U.S.

What-Is-Dark-Sky-Park-Camping-2-(1).jpgHere are just some of the best parks in the United States for dark sky camping.

Grand Canyon National Park

It comes as no surprise that one of the world’s most beloved geological landscapes is also a prime destination for the darkest skies in the U.S. If you’re camping on the South Rim, consider visiting Moran Point for a clear view of the night sky. Campers at the South Rim have access to campfire rings, picnic tables, dump stations, and drinking water. 

If you’re looking to rent an RV for your journey, visit Sounds Good Mobile to book an RV from Cruise America.

Craters Of The Moon National Park

The Craters of the Moon Park is blessed with a spectacular view of the Milky Way Galaxy. On top of that, the park staff is dedicated to preserving the park as a “night-sky friendly” destination by mitigating light pollution. Basic amenities at the park’s campgrounds include charcoal grills, picnic tables, and campfire rings.

Visit the Beckham Collision Center to get started with an RV rental from Cruise America.

Joshua Tree National Park

Joshua Tree National Park is a popular dark sky park camping destination because of its location — 5,000 feet above sea level — and its seclusion from cities with high light pollution. While visitors can view the stars from any of the park’s campgrounds, Cottonwood Campground has some of the best darkest skies in the U.S. Amenities include bathrooms, picnic areas, hiking trails, and historical structures.

Contact TNT Delivers & Storage in Palm Springs, California, to rent an RV from Cruise America.

Glacier National Park

What makes Glacier National Park a unique destination for camping under the stars are the nighttime viewing parties. Additionally, the park is led by rangers committed to best dark sky practices through proper light usage. Consider cycling on the Going-to-the-Sun Road at night to experience the Northern Lights. Basic amenities at the park’s campgrounds include showers, storage lockers, faucets, and biker campsites.

Get started on your trip by renting a customized RV. Visit Sports Land in Missoula, Montana, to select a rental RV from Cruise America. 

Headlands International Dark Sky Park

For some of the best and darkest skies in the U.S., head over to Headlands International Dark Sky Park. You can settle in along the Straits of Mackinac and experience a full astronomical observation. The views are year-round, so you don’t have to worry about seasonal visits. Nearby campgrounds offer trails, heated pools, cabins, and full hookup sites. 

To get started with an RV rental from Cruise America, contact Michigan RV Rentals Plus in Grand Rapids, Michigan.

Stargaze with Cruise America

No dark sky park trip is complete without transportation designed to ensure that you and your family travel comfortably. With Cruise America, you can rent an RV that comes equipped with amenities such as showers, stoves, gas cooktops, and generators. Have a real adventure without leaving the comforts of your home!

Contact Cruise America to get started on your stargazing adventure!