Go Star Gazing

Welcome to the Yorkshire Dales Dark Skies

The next Dark Sky Festival will be between 9th and 25th February 2024.  Yorkshire Dales Dark Sky Festival 2024   Click on the link to find out more...

Come and join the very elite club of astro tourists. Here at Granny House you will be provided with a telescope, binoculars, books, red light torches, picnic blankets and a bat detector.

We now have our own stargazing camera mounted on the garage with a fish eye lens taking photos throughout the night.

Have a look @ http://darksky.granvillehouse.synology.me

Look at the menus to the left of the screen for time lapse videos, Keograms and Startrail photos. All taken from the project by Thomas Jacquin. See https://github.com/thomasjacquin/allsky

Did you know that

The Yorkshire Dales have the nations starriest skies and is the biggest Dark Sky Reserve in the UK?
We see thousands of stars overhead compared with a handful from towns and cities
You can glimpse the Milky Way in all its glory with sparkling star clusters and sometimes the elusive Northern Lights.
Our dark skies are also good for nocturnal wildlife such as bats, owls and moths. Most wildlife in the UK is active at night, so pop out for a walk with the red light torches to help your night vision.

Have a look here at the Go Stargazing website for an excellent collection of further information.

Or here National Parks Dark Skies

When is the best time to come?

The starriest skies are when the moon is absent.

The Milky Way is best seen between August and November.

Have a look at the 'APT Darkness Clock' App or the Dark Sky Calendar to help you plan your visit.

Where to observe

The light levels at Granny House are very low and so there are great viewing opportunities in the garden and in the orchard where there are chairs and tables, but there are also special designated sites nearby. On the right the map is a light survey of the local area.

Dark Sky Festivals

Each year there are 2 festivals during school half term holidays, these are the biggest dark sky festivals in the UK.

The last 2 weeks of February
The last 10 days days of October

Regular Meteor showers

Perseids. - 12th and 13th August
Orionids - 21st October
Leonids.- 17th and 18th November
Geminids - 13th and 14th December


We have created a special set of shelves in the boot room and there you will find red light head torches so you can see in the dark without affecting your eyes night vision, blankets to keep you warm, binoculars (10/50) which are better than telescopes for unaided novices. You will be able to sweep the Milky Way, look at craters on the moon, larger star clusters, brighter comets, big galaxies and the moons of Jupiter. We provide the books: Star Gazing for Dummies and Turn Left at Orion which you may like to read. You will find chairs and tables in the garden and in the orchard. If you have a good telescope then bring it along, otherwise we do provide a very basic one.


There are lots of free and cheap phone apps. Have a look at:-

  • Sky Safari
  • Google Skymap
  • Meteor Shower Guide
  • Stellarium
  • Heavens Above
  • Star Walk (iOS)
  • Stellar Tour (iOS)
  • Red Shift
  • Aurorawatch
  • Skyview Lite
  • ISS Detector
  • ISS Spotter

Nocturnal wildlife

There's plenty out there, you will see badgers, deer, weazels, hedgehogs, rabbits and hare, different owls too. We can lend you a bat detector if you wish.