Utah has some of the best stargazing in the country, here’s where

Jul 17, 2023, 1:27 PM | Updated: 2:06 pm

(Andrew Hyer/KSL TV Viewer)...

(Andrew Hyer/KSL TV Viewer)

(Andrew Hyer/KSL TV Viewer)

SALT LAKE CITY — Summer is upon us and for many that means taking advantage of Utah’s great outdoors. While many may think of rock formations and national parks when it comes to Utah, there’s another aspect of Utah’s backyard that entices visitors: our dark skies.
With the highest of International Dark-Sky Association-certified locations, including communities, parks and protected areas, Utah has some of the best star-gazing areas in the U.S.
According to, 80% of Americans live in an area where the Milky Way is not visible due to light pollution from the cities.  The International Dark Sky Places (IDSP) Program was founded in 2001 to encourage communities and parks to protect dark sites around the world through better lighting policies and public education.

As of January 2023, there are 201 certified Dark Sky Places in the world. Utah has 24 Dark-Sky certified locations.

Zion National Park Designated As International Dark Sky Park

Utah has the highest concentration of International Dark-Sky Association-certified locations, including communities, parks and protected areas.

Utah’s starry skies, taken from an undisclosed dark sky location (Larry D Curtis/KSL TV)

So just where can you get some of Utah’s best views of the Milky Way? Here’s the Dark-sky certified areas in Utah.

Northern Utah areas

  • Antelope Island
  • Dinosaur National Monument
  • East Canyon State Park
  • Jordanelle State Park
  • North Fork Park
  • Rockport State Park
  • Steinaker State Park
  • Timpanogos Cave National Monument

Southeastern Utah areas

  • Arches National Park
  • Canyonlands National Park
  • Dead Horse Point State Park
  • Goblin Valley State Park
  • Goosenecks State Park
  • Hovenweep National Monument
  • Natural Bridges National Monument
  • Rainbow Bridge National Monument

Southwestern Utah areas

  • Bryce Canyon National Park
  • Capitol Reef National Park
  • Cedar Breaks National Monument
  • Fremont Indian State Park
  • Kodachrome Basin State Park
  • Zion National Park


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Utah has some of the best stargazing in the country, here’s where