Dark sky places in TN

List of darkest places in Tennessee for stargazing, astrophotography, astrotourism, star parties, and astronomy club events. Often these are national and state parks and forests that are either remote or "protected" against light pollution.

National and state parks often let you stay overnight under the stars, hence their motto - "Half the park is after dark".

Bortle scale for sites is given where known. Also ask your local astronomy club for guidance as they will know the darkest places.

NAME BORTLE
Big Hill Pond State Park 3
Bledsoe Creek
Cherokee National Forest
Fall Creek Falls
Great Smoky Mountains National Park 3
Harrison Bay State Park
Meeman-Shelby State Park
Mousetail Landing State Park 3
Obed Wild & Scenic River National Reserve 2
Pickett CCC Memorial State Park 2-3
Sgt. Alvin York State Park 3


Light Pollution Map w/ Bortle

On the left is a 2019 satellite image of TN showing light pollution from the NOAA National Geophysical Data Center. On the right is a 2015 light pollution map showing sky brightness at the zenith from World Atlas data. Colors correspond approximately to the Bortle scale. Use as a guide to find the darkest sky locations near you.

TN night sky light pollution map