Thirteen miles west of Davis Mountains State Park, visitors look to the stars at the University of Texas’ McDonald Observatory. The research and educational facility is named for W.J. McDonald, the Texas banker who provided funding for the original 82 inch telescope built in 1933. A state-of-the-art visitors center demonstrates how astronomers use spectroscopy to chart the heavens and offers solar viewings and star parties. It also hosts guided tours of one of the observatory’s several telescopes, the Hobby-Eberly, the world’s third-largest optical telescope.
Prices vary, please check website for program-specific pricing.
Visitor Center open daily from 10 a.m. - 5:30 p.m. plus nightly star parties by reservation.