12 of the World's Top Stays for Luxury Stargazing
Most places around the world transforms when day turns into night.
Whether you're into astrology or astronomy, Jacada has links to some of the best lodges in the world for luxury stargazing.
With the sky constantly evolving, here are some of the best luxury lodges designed specifically for stargazing.
1) Sanctuary Baines’ Camp, Botswana
As the smallest of all the Sanctuary Retreats, the intimate and eco-friendly Baines’ Camp has just five luxurious suites, atmospherically situated on a raised platform over the Boro River amidst a grove of trees, set in a private concession bordering Moremi Game Reserve.
Here on your own private deck, there’s the unique opportunity to stargaze from an outdoor star bath or sky bed. This, along with the chance to walk with elephants, explore the waterways of the Okavango Delta by dugout canoe, and take night drives to see the nocturnal game, makes staying at Baines’ Camp an unforgettable experience.
2) Explora Atacama, Chile
Everything about the hotel exudes understated quality, with tastefully furnished, extremely comfortable rooms. Each has its own jacuzzi in the bathroom and a cut-out floor to ceiling window with panoramic views.
There are four interconnected high-design swimming pools and saunas, a stargazing platform (complete with high quality telescopes) and an open bar. The hotel is also home to a superb restaurant.
3) Nayara Springs, Costa Rica
The area around La Fortuna is one of the few places in the northern hemisphere to see the two galaxies known as Magellanic Clouds. The boutique hotel and spa Nayara Springs is the ideal base for your stargazing trip, located just outside La Fortuna and overlooking Arenal Volcano, with its own spa, yoga pavilion, poolside restaurant and piano bar. Visit mid December to mid April for the best chance of seeing the Magellanic Clouds.
4) Hotel Rangá, Iceland
The hotel even has its own astronomical observatory, with cutting edge computerised telescopes and a roll-off roof for viewing the stars and planets in remarkable detail.
5) Sossusvlei Desert Lodge, Namibia
Located close to the desert’s great red sand dunes, this split-level stylish lodge has floor-to-ceiling windows to make the most of the view and its own observatory from where you can study the constellations in more detail. Skylights are fitted above each bed for late night stargazing too.
6) Leobo Private Reserve, South Africa
While the deluxe accommodation includes a children’s room filled with toys and bunk beds, a state-of-the-art observation tower is yet another Leobo showstopper, where you can discover the African night sky on an astronomy tour decked out with a telescope and space suits.
7) Molori, Madikwe, South Africa
Aside from game drives and bush tracking, Molori is a prime stargazing spot, with its own observatory. The Molori Safari Observatory has a fully retractable roof and powerful automatic digital telescope for studying the night sky.
8) Singita Faru Faru Lodge, Singita Grumeti, Tanzania
In a 350,000-acre concession area in northern Tanzania, Singita Faru Faru encompasses eight luxury suites, each with their own Swarovski telescope for seeing the game and passing migration of wildebeest and zebra up-close. In this remote wilderness, the dark night sky is a spectacular sight, so guided stargazing safaris are also on the agenda.
9) Soneva Kiri, Koh Kood, Thailand
On this pristine island of rainforest, white-sand beaches and fishing villages, the hotel and spa Soneva Kiri features expansive luxury villas that are located on the beach or amongst the lush rainforest; all with infinity pools.
As well as treetop dining and an open-air cinema, the hotel has its own observatory to make the most of the exceptionally clear night sky.
10) Fregate Private Island, The Seychelles
Situated on its own island, this luxury resort offers ultimate privacy in a pristine setting. Each thatched hut is set on the island’s white sand shores, or on the slopes of the rainforest covered hills, with its own infinity pool and views over the Indian Ocean.
Sunset cruises, beach picnics, nature treks and wine tasting are all on offer throughout the day, but the resort also has a stargazing programme for guests to get to know the starry night sky.
11) Mt Cook Retreat, Lake Pukaki, New Zealand
On the doorstep of Aoraki Mount Cook National Park, the exclusive Mt Cook Lakeside Retreat is set in a forest wilderness by the azure waters of Lake Pukaki, with spectacular, uninterrupted views towards the Southern Alps and Aoraki Mt Cook itself, New Zealand’s highest mountain.
The retreat is located in the Aoraki Mackenzie International Dark Sky Reserve and has its own private observatory. Take a closer look at deep space, other planets, nebula and constellations.
12) Longitude 131, Uluru, Australia
Situated in the heart of Australia’s Red Centre, Longitude 131° is the perfect location to admire stars in the endless dark night sky. Sunset drinks are served each evening and, after dinner, the resident astrologer will regale guests with tales of the southern constellations.