Autumn is a great time for stargazing and there are some fantastic sites around the UK where you can view spectacular night skies. This September why not enjoy magical walking routes that are perfect for a night-time stroll. Here’s are some of top stargazing sites to visit, courtesy of the National Trust.
Officially accredited with Dark Sky Discovery status, Carnewas is one of the most popular destinations on the Cornish coast. During the day you can enjoy stunning clifftop views but in the evening you only need to step a short distance to the picnic area alongside the car park to find the ideal place to look at the night sky.
Leigh Woods, Bristol
A beautiful haven on Bristol’s doorstep, Leigh Woods offers diverse woodland and wonderful views of Avon Gorge. In the evening the unlit skies, which are not affected by light pollution, are perfect for a spot of family stargazing.
Toys Hill, Kent
The panoramic countryside views from Toys Hill in Kent are breathtaking day and night. As one of the county's highest points, it's the perfect spot for stargazing.
Mottistone Down, Isle of Wight
The panoramic views of a light pollution-free night sky from Mottistone’s heathland common hill is perfect for star gazing. The estate overlooks the inky black sea at night time.
The vast open skies over Dunstable and the Downs will wow you as the stars begin to appear. Don’t forget to wrap up warm against the autumn chill, a torch will always come in handy too.
The Norfolk Coast, Norfolk
Walking at night in places far from light pollution can reward you with stunning views of the stars. With points of easy access and the back drop of the North Sea the Norfolk Coast is no exception.
Carding Mill Valley and the Long Mynd, Shropshire
This top spot is well known to local stargazers; on a clear night you are guaranteed a spectacular view. The National Trust has four designated Dark Sky areas on Long Mynd, including Carding Mill Valley and Pole Cottage.
Fountains Abbey and Studley Royal, North Yorkshire
Ever wanted to see a star up close? Test out your telescope skills and unlock the secrets of the night sky over Fountains Abbey.
By day Wasdale offers unlimited outdoor adventures, but by night the clear open skies provide a fantastic opportunity for stargazing. A night or two at the Wasdale campsite turns this trip into the perfect weekend escape.
Hadrian’s Wall, Northumberland
Head out for an evening looking at the stars along the Hadrian’s Wall in Europe’s largest Dark Sky Park, officially Britain’s best place to see the night sky.
Brecon Beacons became the country's first International Dark Sky Reserve in 2012. There are many places in this majestic, mountain landscape where you’ll get superb views of the night sky.
Pembrokeshire's home to a network of Dark Sky Discovery Sites; and is a nationally-recognised designation for top stargazing spots across the UK. From Broadhaven South to Martin’s Haven, find a favourite spot under the stars this autumn.
For a full list of sites and how to find them, visit: nationaltrust.org.uk/features/top-spots-for-stargazing