Use telescopes to observe planets, stars, and other wonders of the Universe with your own eyes. Knowledgeable staff will be present to answer questions and guide observing.
Telescopic viewing at the Observatory is scheduled to follow The Historical Quest to See to the End of the Universe… Or Its Beginning lecture on the same night. The lecture begins in the Museum's IMAX theater at 8:00 pm and is free but requires tickets. You do not have to attend the lecture in order to use the telescopes.
This stargazing event will be held if weather conditions permit. For weather and closure updates, check @SIObservatory, call 202.633.2517 the day of the event, or ask at the Welcome Center when you arrive at the Museum.
Online visitors are invited to check the Observatory's Ustream channel for a live telescope view during our open hours, when available, as well as archived videos of the Sun, Moon, planets, and more.
Accessibility: The Observatory dome and terrace are accessible via ramp or steps. Written and touchable explanatory materials are available.