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Dark Sky Parks

Warrumbungle National Park, near Coonabarabran in central western NSW, is Australia's only Dark Sky Park and the first in the southern hemisphere. 

Read more about Dark Sky Parks

The park is renowned for its stargazing opportunities thanks to its crystal-clear night skies, low humidity, high altitude and world-class astronomy research facility at nearby Siding Spring Observatory.

What are Dark Sky Parks?

International Dark Sky Parks are publicly or privately-owned spaces that have exceptional starry nights and a nocturnal environment. Dark Sky Parks are specifically protected for their scientific, natural, educational, cultural heritage, and/or public enjoyment.

Taking back the night

Dark, natural night skies are important to animals, plants and humans who need a regular interval of light and dark to know when to eat, sleep, hunt, migrate and reproduce. NPWS is reducing light pollution in Warrumbungle National Park by:

  • Modifying lighting so that it faces downwards and fitting lights with shields  
  • Replacing or disconnecting upward facing lights
  • Placing lights in public areas on a timer to reduce the length of their use 
  • There will be no street lighting within the Dark Sky Park area

How you can help

These sky-friendly lighting tips can help reduce light pollution (too much man-made light) and protect our night skies into the future:

  • Turn off your lights when you don’t need them
  • Avoid using very bright lights
  • Hang your lights under an awning
  • Face your lights downward
  • Get outside, look up and enjoy the stars.
Canyon Picnic Area, Warrumbungle National Park. Photo: Rob Cleary