Buy Tickets for Programs

Access to the Observatory grounds is ONLY allowed for visitors with reserved passes. All access requires advance reservations, which are subject to capacity limits. 

Our evening programs are paused temporarily. If your reservation is affected, you will receive an email with additional information. 


Join us for the following programs at the McDonald Observatory Frank N Bash Visitors Center.

  • General Admission - Tuesday, Wednesday, Friday, and Saturday 2:00 - 3:30 pm
  • Guided Tours - Tuesday, Wednesday, Friday, and Saturday mornings 11:00a and afternoons 2:00p (approx. 1.5 hrs, weather permitting)



  Adults Military
Senior (65+)
Students (5+)
Children under 5

General Admission

Guided Tours







"Locals" are Fort Davis, Alpine, or Marfa residents with valid proof of residency

Please include all members of your party in your reservation (including passes for children of any age). Contact us for more information or to let us know if you have special needs. Bring a printout of your online receipt, a digital copy on your device (note that the Observatory does not have public WiFi and is out of cell range) or make note of the confirmation code you receive from our system. Passes will be under your last name at Check-in. 

March - May: Reservation information about public programs in March (and beyond) will be posted in January. Friends of McDonald Observatory member receive advanced notice of program availability.

Important: McDonald Observatory, part of the University of Texas at Austin, is located 450 miles west of Austin and is on Central Time.

Use the tools below to buy tickets. The system defaults to one adult pass. If you don't need that pass, click the number field and select zero.


Amphitheater with Milky Way

Amphitheater with Milky Way (horizontal)