Outdoor Recreation

Stargazing in Kelowna: Best Spots for a Celestial Experience

A man and a woman are sitting on a blanket on a beach at night in Okanagan, looking up at the night sky with a telescope.

Under the starlit canvas of the night sky, Kelowna emerges as a must-visit for those seeking a celestial adventure. Away from the glare of city lights, the skies above this city offer a gateway to the cosmic wonders, making it a sought-after destination for astronomers and sky enthusiasts alike. In this guide, we explore the top locations, ideal times, and local astronomy clubs that make Kelowna a stargazing paradise.

Why Kelowna is Ideal for Stargazing

Kelowna stands out in the Canadian landscape as a prime location for stargazing. This distinction comes largely due to its significantly lower levels of light pollution compared to other major Canadian cities. The city's geographical positioning acts as a shield against artificial light, providing an optimal dark-sky environment essential for clear celestial viewing. Adding to this, Kelowna's typically dry climate gifts its residents and visitors with many clear, cloudless nights. These natural conditions converge to create perfect settings for observing the night sky’s splendour.

Best Stargazing Spots in Kelowna

Knox Mountain Park

In the city lies Knox Mountain Park, an urban sanctuary where the cosmos feels within reach. Ascending the mountain, stargazers find numerous isolated spots ideal for setting up telescopes. The elevated position offers expansive, unobstructed views of the night sky, transforming an ordinary evening into an extraordinary stargazing experience.

Myra-Bellevue Provincial Park

For those who enjoy pairing their stargazing with the rustle of a camping adventure, Myra-Bellevue Provincial Park is a match made in the heavens. Located on the outskirts of the city, the park basks in minimal light pollution, offering crystal-clear views of the stars. Here, under the canvas of the night, you can trace constellations, spot planets, and even catch meteor showers.

John's Family Nature Conservancy Regional Park

Tucked within Kelowna's landscapes, John's Family Nature Conservancy Regional Park offers another serene locale for stargazers. Its higher elevation and natural surroundings create a peaceful environment, perfect for a night spent marveling at the stars.

Optimal Times for Stargazing in Kelowna

While the beauty of Kelowna's night sky can be appreciated year-round, certain periods offer a more enhanced stargazing experience. The late spring and summer months are generally the best times to observe the stars, thanks to the clearer skies. Winter, however, is not to be overlooked, as it presents unique opportunities to view constellations that are not visible in other seasons. Additionally, astronomical events such as meteor showers and full moons punctuate the calendar, offering moments of awe throughout the year.

Local Astronomy Clubs and Events

Okanagan Observatory

The Okanagan Observatory shows the city’s astronomical enthusiasm. Offering free public stargazing sessions on Friday evenings from spring to fall, it serves as a dark-sky observing site. The observatory, run by the local astronomy club, also provides wheelchair-accessible transportation once a month, ensuring that the wonders of the night sky are accessible to all.

Royal Astronomical Society of Canada - Okanagan Centre

The Royal Astronomical Society of Canada's Okanagan Centre is a community of star enthusiasts. Members and non-members alike are welcomed to partake in activities, including the pursuit of observing certificates. The society encourages its members to share their celestial observations, fostering a community of shared knowledge and experience.

Stargazing Etiquette and Tips

When embarking on a stargazing adventure, it’s important to observe basic etiquette. This includes keeping noise levels low, avoiding the use of bright lights that might disrupt the night vision of others, not littering, and respecting the local wildlife and plant life. For those new to stargazing, it's advisable to come prepared with essentials like a telescope or binoculars, a star map or app, and a sense of wonder. Learning how to identify major constellations and planets can immensely enhance the stargazing experience.


Kelowna offers a unique stargazing experience, combining natural beauty, optimal conditions, and a passionate community of astronomy enthusiasts. As we explore these celestial wonders, let's remember the importance of preserving our dark skies for future generations to enjoy.