This tucked away joy is without a doubt one of the best places to stargaze in the Bay Area. The lighthouse has been transformed into a comfortable and cozy hostel right on the water and is in an area that gets almost pitch black at night. To make it even better, the lighthouse has an outdoor hot tub overlooking the water that is open to use for its guests for a small fee. Be sure to check in early and put your name on the list for the hot tub time you desire, as the list fills up fairly quickly.
Just across the Golden Gate bridge from San Francisco, the Marin Headlands are an easily accessible area from which to stargaze. One of the first exits off the highway, the drive through the headlands will provide you with stunning views of the bridge as well as beautiful skies on a clear night. There are plenty of places to pull out along the road and it’s easy to find parking, so you will have no issues camping out in the warmth of your car while enjoying the stars.
North of San Francisco and close to Mount Tamalpais State Park, Point Reyes is close to the ocean and offers great views of both the water and the sky, especially when it is clear out. The park is open until midnight for the majority of the year and can be easily accessed by car. Not only does it offer great wildlife viewing opportunities, but it is also typically not too affected by light pollution, if you manage to find a clear night in the Bay Area fog.
‘Save the best for last’ is always a good motto, and Mount Diablo State Park is certainly one of the best places to stargaze in the Bay Area. Often frequented by amateur and professional astronomers, Mount Diablo has an observatory that is open to the public during certain times and has unobstructed views of the Bay Area. If you are looking to get an education and a close up view of the stars, head to Mount Diablo.