Dart Skies

Exmoor's First Dark Sky Festival is coming ! - 19th to 29th October 2017

A ten day festival of activities for families and enthusiasts that celebrate Exmoor’s dark skies and enable people to experience the exceptional quality of starry nights on Exmoor.

Festival activities to be confirmed but we hope to include planetarium visits, a nocturnal wildlife trail and a nightime guided walks . Members of the public can also join in with themed events such as an Astrophotography competition and maybe even a ‘Star Baker’ themed cake and biscuit baking competition or a rocket workshop for children; the more organisations that become involved the wider the extent of activities.

More information to follow. If you are interested in running an event then please contact Katrina Munro

01398 323665

Exmoor National Park is designated an International Dark Sky Reserve -  the first in Europe! 

Exmoor National Park is home to some of the darkest skies in the country so it's a great place to gaze at the stars.

For thousands of years, humans have looked up at the night sky and wondered at what they saw. This wonder helped to define our sense of who we are, our myths and legends, our religious beliefs and our sense of our place in a wider cosmos.  But the dark skies that were the night time backdrop for the vast majority of human history are for many of us know a rare site. Our night times are filled with the orange glow of street lighting and we are all more likely to be looking at a television that looking at the start. So why not take the time on Exmoor to look up and rediscover your sense of wonder? Good spots are Holdstone Hill, County Gate, Brendon Two Gates, Webbers Post, Anstey Gate, Haddon Hill and Wimbleball Lake.On a clear night the night sky of Exmoor is simply stunning when many astronomical sights can be seen through the naked eye and even more can be discovered through a telescope or binoculars.

To help you get the most from Exmoor's dark skies we have produced a new Dark Skies Pocket Guide   -  download it  here or pick up a copy from one of our National Park Centres  where you can also hire a telescope !

Dark Sky Places Annual Report -  Update October 2016

Over the last 12 months many individuals and organisations have been continuing to promote and protect Exmoor’s beautiful dark night time skies. Find out more in our annual Dark Sky Places Report that covers the period October 2015 to October 2016.

'In Starlight' is a short film made by Somerset based artist Frances Harrison inspired by Exmoor's Dark Skies.

Here are some upcoming events that might be particularly suitable if you love stargazing. Or you can browse all events here


Forest Night Walk

Nutcombe Bottom car park
31st May 2017 8:30pm-10:30pm
Come for a walk with Exmoor National Park and Forestry Commission rangers as we ...
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The Horner Family Campout

9th Jun 2017 4:00pm - 11th Jun 2017 11:00am

The Simonsbath Family Campout

Ashcombe Carpark
7th Jul 2017 4:00pm - 9th Jul 2017 11:00am

Dunkery By Moonlight

Webbers Post
7th Aug 2017 7:45pm-10:45pm

The Wimbleball Family Campout

Wimbleball Lake
18th Aug 2017 4:00pm - 20th Aug 2017 11:00am

The Heddon's Mouth Family Campout

Heddon's Mouth
15th Sep 2017 4:00pm - 17th Sep 2017 11:00am