Kitt Peak National Observatory

Get away from the city, and hear the wind whistle through the cactus while you see the stars burn up the night sky.

With the largest collection of optical telescopes anywhere in the world, and the largest solar telescope in the world, Kitt Peak National Observatory is a must-see for any nature-loving stargazer who finds themselves in Southern Arizona.

Nearly 7,000 feet above sea level in the middle of the Sonoran Desert, far from the lights of the city, scientists are hard at work studying the mysteries of the universe. The first telescope at Kitt Peak pointed to the night sky in 1960, and ever since, scientists and the public have been bursting through linear thinking and finding answers to the questions of the universe.

Tours are offered three times daily, though the nightly tours take a break for monsoon season from June 15 through Sept. 1.

Step inside one of those giant, air-conditioned telescopes; look to the stars; and forget that the sun is burning the paint off your car outside.

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