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Top Spots For Stargazing In South Florida

January 12, 2014 9:00 AM

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(Source: www.broward.edu)
South Florida’s big city image – complete with bright lights, high rises and lots of traffic – would normally make it impossible to enjoy outdoor activities like stargazing. Surprisingly, there are several great places in the area to enjoy the astronomical wonders above. Stargazing is so fascinating because it’s mystical and alluring, and is a great way to enjoy nature. Whether it’s just for an evening under the stars, a chance to see the planets or to watch the Perseids meteor shower, this “best of” list offers you the best places to go stargazing in South Florida.

Bill Sadowski Park And Nature Center
17555 S.W. 79th Ave.
Miami, FL 33157
(305) 255-4767
www.miamidade.gov/ecoadventures

Every Saturday evening starting at 8 p.m., the Southern Cross Astronomical Society (SCAS) holds its weekly stargazing event at this Palmetto Bay park. The organization offers lectures, slideshows and firsthand knowledge to enhance the experience. You’re welcome to bring your own telescope; there’s also a team of experienced technicians onsite to assist you if needed. You don’t have a telescope? No worries – the largest telescope in the county is available for your use at no charge.

Zoo Miami with SCAS
12400 S.W. 152nd St.
Miami, FL 33177
(305) 661-1375 Ext. 3
www.scas.org

You’ll find this stargazing experience both intriguing and unfamiliar because it involves stargazing in the daytime. This event is also hosted by SCAS and features solar stargazing, usually held between 10 a.m. and noon on Saturdays. With high-powered equipment onsite, you can enjoy the unique experience of seeing stars during the day, sunspots and even nuclear explosions. The information that’s provided by the team of experienced experts will help you understand the process of seeing stars in daytime and appreciate the wonder in this unparalelled experience.

Related: Best Places To Take A Date

Fox Observatory At Markham Park with SFAAA
16001 W. State Road 84
Sunrise, FL 33326
(954) 384-0442
www.sfaaa.com

Located near Alligator Alley, this park is perfectly positioned away from much of the light pollution that makes it hard to see the stars in the city. The park is also home to the South Florida Amateur Astronomers Association (SFAAA), a non-profit organization that hosts weekly stargazing events at the observatory. The events start at dusk and have been known to last the entire night. There’s a team of experts available at each event to answer all of your questions and lend themselves to making this a memorable event.

Miami Science Museum
3280 S. Miami Ave.
Miami, FL 33129
(305) 646-4200
www.miamisci.org

Standing as “science central” for South Florida, naturally it’s an excellent location to see the stars. For over 60 years, this museum has provided in-depth education and information about science to Miami and all of South Florida. It continues that tradition with its weekly stargazing expeditions at the Weintraub Observatory. At the rooftop facility, you’ll have access to two Meade telescopes to see the stars and even other planets like Saturn and Jupiter. Prior to the observatory event, there’s a planetarium show and a brief lecture by a guide to get you prepared for some cool astronomical sights.

Related: Best Places To Get In Touch With Nature

Buehler Planetarium And Observatory
Broward College
3501 S.W. 64th Ave.
Davie, FL 33314
(954) 201-6681
www.broward.edu

This is one of Broward’s most popular places for great stargazing. The site, managed by Broward College, provides state-of-the-art equipment, a top-notch facility and the opportunity for daytime and nighttime stargazing. Operating three times a week, the stargazing events at the observatory feature planet and star sightings, and even a possible meteor shower. The events are open to the public and are free.

For nearly 20 years, Shawanda James has been actively involved in creative writing in Miami, Florida. In addition to her work as a freelance writer, she is actively seeking publication for her debut novel and collection of poetry. Her work can be found at Examiner.com.

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