Sign Up
Newsletter Signup
Free Fodor's Newsletter

Subscribe today for weekly travel inspiration, tips, and special offers.

Passport: Your weekly travel wrap-up
Today's Departure: Your daily dose of travel inspiration

North-Central Arizona Sights

Lowell Observatory

  • 1400 W. Mars Hill Rd. Map It
  • West Flagstaff
  • Observatory/Planetarium
  • Fodor's Choice

Updated 04/10/2014

Fodor's Review

In 1894 Boston businessman, author, and scientist Percival Lowell founded this observatory from which he studied Mars. His theories of the existence of a ninth planet sowed the seeds for the discovery of Pluto at Lowell in 1930 by Clyde Tombaugh. The 6,500-square-foot Steele Visitor Center hosts exhibits and lectures and has a gift shop. Several interactive exhibits—among them Pluto Walk, a scale model of the solar system—appeal to children. Visitors are invited, on some evenings, to peer through the 24-inch Clark telescope and the McAllister, a 16-inch reflector telescope. Day and evening viewings are offered year-round, but call ahead for a schedule. The Clark observatory dome is open and unheated, so dress for the outdoors. To reach the observatory, less than 2 miles from downtown, drive west on Route 66, which resumes its former name, Santa Fe Avenue, before it merges into Mars Hill Road.

Sight Information


1400 W. Mars Hill Rd., Flagstaff, Arizona, 86001, United States

Map It


928-233–3212; 928-233–3211-recorded info


Sight Details:

  • $12
  • Hrs vary by season; call ahead

Updated 04/10/2014


Map View

Map of

What's Nearby

  • Restaurants
  • Sights
  • Hotels

See all sights in North-Central Arizona

Add Your Own Review

When did you go?

Minimum 200 character count

How many stars would you give?




Don't Miss



No Thanks

Love To Travel?

Get FREE e-mail communications from Fodor's Travel, covering must-see travel destinations, expert trip planning advice, and travel inspiration to fuel your passion.

How we use your email

Thank You

Now sit back, relax, and check your inbox to start planning your next travel adventure.

Please tell us more about the type of travel you're interested in. Check all that apply.