University of Texas McDonald Observatory

3640 Dark Sky Dr.
Fort Davis, TX 79734- Map It
Phone: (432) 426-3640

AAA Editor Notes

University of Texas McDonald Observatory is 16 mi. n.w. via SR 118 on Spur 78. The Frank N. Bash Visitor Center at the base of Mounts Locke and Fowlkes is the check-in point for all activities and offers exhibits about the observatory and research techniques. The giant Hobby-Eberly telescope (purportedly the second largest in the world) is connected to a gallery that features an interpretive exhibit. The Solar Viewing Program offers live (weather permitting) images of the sun's surface. Evening Star Parties let guests view stars and planets through telescopes in the visitor center. Guided tours are available. Picnicking is permitted. Food is available.
Daytime Pass (includes video, exhibit hall, guided tour and solar viewing) $9; $8 (ages 6-12, ages 65+ and military with ID). Solar Viewing Program only $6; $5 (ages 6-12, ages 65+ and military with ID). Star Party Pass $15; $13 (ages 65+ and military with ID); $11 (ages 6-12). Reservations are required for all programs.
Hours: Daily 10-5:30. Solar Viewing Program daily at 11 and 2. Evening Star Parties are offered year-round; phone for schedule. Closed Jan. 1, Thanksgiving and Christmas. Allow 2 hours, 30 minutes minimum.