Light pollution has killed stargazing for most city folk. A bright metropolis skyline may be beautiful, but it certainly isn’t doing the likes of Orion any favors, either. As a result, travelers have long absconded to more tranquil vistas for stargazing. One such getaway is the remote Namib Desert, where the African sky still shimmers with lights (not of the electric variety).
Nestled in the heart of the Namib is the AndBeyond Sossusvlei Desert Lodge, where you can catch some of the planet’s most spectacular celestial views directly from your bed, via skylight. In addition, all suites feature a glass-fronted design, as well as glass-encased rain showers, for further unspoiled views of the desert and the sky above. “The suites are essentially a glass box, with a beautiful stone wall in the back,” Jason King, regional director of AndBeyond South Africa, tells Robb Report. “We kept it very simple, but it really maximizes the view.”
For those with a stronger affinity for the astronomical, the lodge’s observatory gives an even more in-depth look at what lies above. It’s a fully equipped vantage point—resident astronomer and all—that’s ideal for observing Saturn, the Southern Cross and the like. And it’s a certifiably excellent place for such an observatory, as the lodge sits on Africa’s first International Dark Sky Reserve, a protected area where the skies are (obviously) very, very dark. “The lodge is backed up against a mountain, looking out straight over the Namib,” adds King,. “So we have great views over the plains and into the desert itself.”
But don’t hop a plane just yet. Sossusvlei is closed for a refresh, but will open its doors (and skylights) once again come October. Fair warning: Dozing off beneath these vistas may leave city slickers feeling a bit starstruck.