Create the perfect backyard setting for stargazing

16 March, 2015

If you're having trouble trying to figure what to do to spruce up your backyard in order to heighten an everyday experience like unwinding in your patio chair, then a backyard observatory can open your world to the billions of stars that make up the night sky. Nowadays, thanks to advancements in technology, amateur stargazers need not rely on extravagant telescopes the size of buildings to enjoy the brilliance of the stars. Inexpensive telescopes and regular binoculars can easily provide a glimpse of the heavens that will you leave breathless and amazed.

Here's a rundown on how to transform your backyard patio from an everyday lounge into an astronomer's paradise:

Get a star guide
Once you've picked out the viewing device that works best for you – whether it's an extremely large telescope or a simple pair of children's binoculars – be sure to pick up a star guide so you know the best places in the sky to focus in on. Many smartphones have apps that use GPS to point you in the right direction, or you can head down to your local bookstore or library to find books on stargazing. Depending on the season, you'll need to position your telescope in different locations and angles to see the vast variety of stars. Since you'll need to be flexible, outdoor sectional sofas make a great choice for easily arranging and re-arranging your furniture to get the best possible placement and setup for your telescope's view of a particular star or constellation.

Reduce light pollution
Light can definitely be a nuisance as it obstructs our line of sight for distant stars. Even an amateur stargazer will want to dim or turn off any superfluous lights to get rid of as much light pollution as possible. Since most people live in urban areas nowadays, that's tough to manage. If you happen to live in an urban area that has a perpetual glow, try to use a telescope with a bigger lens in order to capture more starlight.

A solid patio umbrella can block out unwanted light. In case you're able to get your yard completely dark and are unable to see, head-mounted illumination can light up your sight and keep your hands free to manipulate your telescope or hold onto your star guide.

If setting up and storing an industrial-grade telescope is too much of a hassle, you can always relax in your patio lounger and use simple binoculars to marvel at the stars.

And while standing on a deck chair to try and get closer to the sky sounds like a wise decision, it's a much better idea to simply invite over friends and family to sit back on your lovely patio furniture as you reveal to your guests the wonders hidden in the night sky.