These days, travelers are increasingly interested in one-of-a-kind adventures, whether that’s glamping trips in some corner of the remote wilderness, private island escapes, or excursions to International Dark Sky Parks. Astrotourism continues to skyrocket in popularity with bookings for stargazing vacations and hotels rising meteorically over the past decade. And it doesn’t take a telescope to see why. Snuggling up to gaze at celestial bodies is a memorable — and, yes, totally romantic — activity that’s perfect for honeymoons, couples getaways, or just a super special trip with your best travel buddy.
Instead of rolling out a blanket outdoors (though, that certainly has a rugged appeal), guests staying at certain celestial-centric properties around the globe get the rare chance to stare up at the majesty of the cosmos without ever leaving bed. Dreaming of spying the aurora borealis, meteor showers, famous constellations, and rare supermoons? There are hotels and properties all over the world that cater to just these types of activities — in luxe accommodations no less. Yes, you can have your star-filled cake and eat it too, it seems.
Stroll on for hotels with out-of-this-world setups — glass orbs, treehouses, and glamping tents — to observe otherworldly skyscapes.
Anantara Golden Triangle Elephant Camp & Resort: Chiang Rai, Thailand
As if getting up close and personal with the largest existing land animals wasn’t enough of a reason to jet off to Chiang Rai, Anantara Golden Triangle Elephant Camp & Resort motivates travelers to make the trek with its spectacular jungle bubbles. Images (though admittedly quite stunning) don’t do justice to the experience of spending an unforgettable evening observing shooting stars — and, of course, seeing majestic creatures mosey around — from a fully furnished transparent orb complete with an al fresco lounge and plunge pool.
Amangiri: Canyon Point, Utah
Amangiri is well known as a splurge-worthy oasis that's favored by celebs like Emily Ratajkowski and the Biebers. Of course, its star power (sorry, couldn’t resist) doesn’t just come from the famous faces who flock to this remote corner of Utah. Jetsetters staying in the ultra-luxurious Mesa Pool Suites and Desert Pool Suites can sleep under the stars in a skybed on the private terrace. True to form for this fabulous Aman outpost, staring up at the Milky Way also includes sumptuous linens, bubbly, s’mores, and a firepit to keep things toasty when the temp drops.
Kakslauttanen Arctic Resort: Saariselkä, Finland
Aurora season in Saariselkä lasts for eight months (late August through the end of April). That gives travelers plenty of time to jet off to this resort village in northern Finland to witness the northern lights in all its lustrous, glowing glory. While there are many places to peep glimmering ribbons of pink, blue, green, and purple dancing through the sky in the area, when you factor in comfort and coziness, the two-person glass igloos with en-suite bathrooms at Kakslauttanen Arctic Resort come out on top every time.
Attrap'Rêves: Allauch, France
Want a front-row seat to the beauty of the universe without sacrificing contemporary comforts or dealing with creepy crawlies? Consider Attrap'Rêves, a dreamy retreat in a verdant forest in Allauch, France. Guests (no doubt, mostly honeymooners and couples keeping the spark alive) get to cozy up in climate-controlled, soundproof bubbles made of recyclable materials. The fishbowl-style digs also boast queen-size beds, 360-degree views, showers, toilets, and telescopes for looking up at the constellations above.
Wadi Rum UFO Luxotel: Wadi Rum Village, Jordan
Seeking a stellar opportunity to marvel at the awesomeness of the cosmos in a surreal setting? Wadi Rum UFO Luxotel offers a totally unique overnight stargazing experience that will leave you seeing stars. Literally. The Joiner Suite Pod Kings are a clever upgrade of glamping tents featuring ample comforts — a couple-size bed, luxe linens, and plush chairs — as well as a skylight and giant front window to soak in the views of the sky and the desert surroundings. Of course, no one would fault you for letting the evening hours pass while hanging and gazing from the hammock.
Lions Sands Narina Lodge: Skukuza, South Africa
A luxury safari is the ultimate bucket-list adventure. What could possibly make a trip filled with wandering the bush and seeing animals in their natural setting more enticing? Holiday goers staying at Lions Sans Narina Lodge in South Africa have the incredible option to slumber under the stars in the Tinyeleti Treehouse, a luxurious step up from childhood fantasies that features a lantern-illuminated gourmet picnic, a rain shower, and feather beds for the coziest spot to glimpse (and, eventually, sleep underneath) the twinkling constellations.
Desert Luxury Camp Erg Chebbi: Merzouga, Morocco
Tucked away in the peaceful, windswept dunes of Zniqui — removed from the more tourist-heavy parts of the Sahara — Desert Luxury Camp Erg Chebbi takes glamping and galaxy-gazing to new levels. The luxurious royalty-worthy tents flaunt handmade Moroccan rugs, wooden furnishings, and ensuite bathrooms with jacuzzis. In the summer, the slumber venues extend to the outdoors. Undulating heaps of sand and deep blue skies stretch as far as the horizon. And the only lights are the infinite number of twinkling stars.
Wilderness Hotel Muotka: Sodankylä, Finland
The wild beauty of the Arctic is on display in Sodankylä. During northern lights-peeping season, that means snowy landscapes as well as starry and brilliant luminescence-striped skies. Wilderness Hotel Muotka invites globetrotters to hunker down in an Aurora Cabin surrounded by a flake-covered taiga forest. Designed to give stargazers unobstructed views of heavenly bodies above without getting out of bed, the ingenious accommodations have laser-heated glass roofs that open up to reveal the cosmos as well as en-suite bathrooms with Finish saunas.
Nayara Alto Atacama: San Pedro de Atacama, Chile
Located in the driest desert on Earth, near the world-famous ALMA Observatory, Nayara Alto Atacama is one of the most unique places you could ever dream of stargazing. It’s framed from above by some of the clearest, darkest night skies in the Southern Hemisphere. While the elegant adobe-style Suites Tilo may not have open ceilings or outdoor beds (though, it’s entirely possible the team would create such a setup if asked), the private patios with open-air rain showers are nothing short of awe-inspiring. The hotel also has a telescope platform!