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Palomar Observatory, Palomar Mountain

(4.4/5 based on 100+ reviews on the web)
Palomar Observatory is located in Palomar Mountain. Work out when and for how long to visit Palomar Observatory and other Palomar Mountain attractions using our handy Palomar Mountain tourist route planner.
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Reviews
TripAdvisor
  • With WWII, the atomic program, the space program, mapping the human genome and other large, often international scientific programs it is easy to forget how special, how challenging and how valuable t...  more »
  • If you're a stargazer you will enjoy this. Definitely fill up the gas tank in Pala before going up. I started up with a half tank and sweated it the whole way down. Also it's cold at 5000+ft so take a...  more »
  • it is a beautiful drive up. When you arrive it is just breathtaking. The observatory is historic and very informative exhibition in the visitors' center. The only disappointment was that there was a v...  more »
Google
  • If you are into astronomy or just into science in general this place is so cool. At its time of construction it was the largest telescope ever built and 70 years later it is still conducting substantive scientific research almost every night of the year. There is a small museum with a gift shop and bathrooms. The docent tour is worth more than the couple dollars it costs. You actually get to go right into the dome and see the telescope close up. Highly recommended.
  • 3 hour drive from where I live and well worth every minute of it. Expected to pay a fee but I, it was free. Just walk in and explores the observatory.
  • The 200 inch telescope at Palomar Observatory is truly a national treasure for the astronomical world. It is an amazing mechanism for viewing the solar system and beyond. My family has always been amazed at how wonderful this telescope is and the exciting breakthroughs in the world of astronomy that it has brought.
  • I've never seen anything bigger than amateur telescope before, so this "giant" with 5 meter mirror impressed me a lot. The story behind it was even more impressive (many thanks to our guide Kent for telling it). Of course, you can read it on wikipedia, but if you can, I would strongly suggest to go and see/hear it in person.
  • We have been planning a trip to the Observatory for weeks, this so as to correlate busy weekday AND weekend works schedule, and the schedules of my children, with Palomar's published hours of operation. Then this morning as we awake to go, I find the Observatory has suddenly closed for a "private event". To say my family is disappointed would be a gross understatement; particularly when my children at the age when the influence of Palomar could be instrumental in helping to shape their future views on space exploration, science, and astronomy. Palomar's ad hoc method of Observatory availability speaks to the same malignant disinterest Palomar administrators lament relative to public lack of interest in all things scientific. Nice work Palomar; for in losing sight of the real priority for your presence, you have become embematic of the problem; and in so doing, Palomar effectively abrogates any claim to fueling a solution to culture‚Äôs indifference to science. Perhaps my children would be better served to consider how the Hale might be useful as a vanity mirror in the offices of Caltech's Dean of Students; as now it is useless to them as a relation of science, exploration, and wonder.