ALMA observatory
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Dark sky travel: Where to spot the stars

The Atacama Large Millimeter/submillimeter Array, a massive radio telescope known as ALMA, is on the Chajnantor Plateau in Chile’s Atacama Desert. Perched at more than 16,000 feet above sea level, the telescope has 66 antennas which act together as a single telescope to provide data to international scientists. 

Tourists on a stargazing tour in May outside of San Pedro de Atacama get their photo taken as part of the experience. The tours cost about $30 and operate 20 days a month, when the moon is at its darkest.  (Astronomic Tour Licanantay Observatory)
This wooden viewing platform is where Astronomic Tour Licanantay Observatory guests sit between taking turns looking through a telescope. The company provides blankets and hot drinks for cold nights.  (Astronomic Tour Licanantay Observatory)
ALMA’s Array Operations Site in the Chilean Andes, where the antennas are positioned for the best signals, is within sight of the Licancabur Volcano, an active volcano on the border between Chile and Bolivia. ALMA is a collaboration between scientists from Europe, North America and East Asia in cooperation with the government of Chile.  (Carlos Padilla/National Radio Astronomy)
Maria Paz Navarro gets a look at the Milky Way outside San Pedro de Atacama in northern Chile, where her company, Astronomic Tour Licanantay Observatory, offers stargazing experiences.  (Terri Colby/Chicago Tribune )
Just outside of Beverly Shores, Ind., in the parking lot for Kemil Beach, amateur astronomers share their telescopes at monthly stargazing events.  (Chuck Flores)
You can get a good look at the Milky Way galaxy, by heading to Indiana Dunes National Lakeshore near Beverly Shores, Ind., a dark-sky community certified by the International Dark-Sky Association.  (Chuck Flores)
After sunset, the Lake Michigan shore at Headlands International Dark Sky Park is a great place for stargazing.  (Petoskey Area Visitors Bureau)
The Milky Way is visible near Mackinaw City, Mich., at the Headlands International Dark Sky Park, on the shores of Lake Michigan.  (Petoskey Area Visitors Bureau)
Stargazers wait for sunset at Headlands International Dark Sky Park near Mackinaw City, Mich.  (Terri Colby/Chicago Tribune )
Astronomer Will Niedbala guides stargazers wanting to use the telescope at the Headlands International Dark Sky Park in Michigan.  (Terri Colby/Chicago Tribune )
The Headlands International Dark Sky Park near Mackinaw City, Mich., has walking trails with exhibits like this one, explaining the mythology that surrounds Saturn.  (Terri Colby/Chicago Tribune )
Once a month, Indiana Dunes National Lakeshore hosts local astronomical organizations, which set up telescopes in the parking lot at Kemil Beach to give stargazers a chance to look at the night sky.  (Larry Silvestri)