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Spectacular Dark Skies in Northumberland National Park


Northumberland National Park is out of this world for stargazing and astronomy. We officially have the darkest skies in England. Here, on a clear night, you can see millions of stars, the Milky Way and even the Andromeda Galaxy (2.5 million light years away) with the naked eye. Every night, there is something different to see, from meteor showers to the Northern lights.

International Dark Sky Park

Northumberland Dark Sky Park is the largest area of protected night sky in Europe. It includes the whole of Northumberland National Park and 67% of Kielder Water and Forest Park, totally 572 square miles or nearly 15,000 square kilometres. The International Dark Skies Association (IDA) has given us Gold Tier status, its very highest level of award.


Because of the unpopulated nature of the Northumberland Dark Sky Park, if you travel to any place away from street lights, you will be amazed by the number of stars you see on a clear night. Please remember to be courteous to others living in the area, especially late at night when people may be asleep nearby.

Dark Sky Discovery Sites

Some specific places have been designated because of parking and facilities such as toilets and nearby pubs. Take a look at the full list of Dark Sky Discovery Sites or check out the interactive map below.

Lighting Guide

Read our Lighting Guide for residents and those seeking permission to develop within the Northumberland
International Dark Sky Park.

Astronomer’s Checklist

Your guide to the essentials you’ll need to have for looking at our Dark Skies at sites like Greenhaugh. View our Astronomer’s Checklist.

Stargazing Calendar

Find out what you can see in Northumberland’s dark skies during the year, at sites like Cawfields, with our month by month Stargazing Calendar.

Connect with Northumberland National Park


Planning in the National Park

Northumberland National Park Authority is the statutory Planning Authority for the area of the Northumberland National Park. View our planning pages here.