Durham’s Dark Skies
If you’re used to city living, you probably give the heavens little more than an upward glance. Light pollution means you’ll be lucky to spot more than a handful of stars.
Out here in Teesdale, it’s a different story. With few towns, more sheep than people, and low levels of light pollution, County Durham boasts several areas designated as Dark Sky Discovery Sites.
Early spring and late autumn are the best times. On a clear night, you can stare at the sky and watch the Milky Way multiply before your eyes.
You’ll find the Discovery Sites at:
* Balderhead Reservoir
* Burnhope Reservoir
* Cow Green Reservoir
* Grassholme Reservoir
* Hury Reservoir
* Selset Reservoir
* Tan Hill Inn
Just a couple of miles away, Grassholme Observatory offers you a universe of stars using high-tech instruments and computers that’ll take you on an inspirational journey. Open from Wednesday to Sunday.
The Northern Lights
Thought you’d need to head to Norway’s North Cape to see the world’s best lights show? Think again. Get lucky and you can catch the Northern Lights right here in the Durham Dales.
Need help stargazing?
Visit County Durham has recognised Owl Cottage as Dark Sky-Friendly. Help yourself to our binoculars, red-light head torches, and stargazing maps. Make a night of it with our friendly owl and settle in with a flask, folding chairs, and blankets.