The Franklin Institute

Masks are required for all guests ages 3+ regardless of vaccination status. Proof of vaccination is not required to visit The Franklin Institute. In accordance with Philadelphia's indoor dining mandate, proof of vaccination is required to enter The Eatery. Learn more.

Observatory Icon

Visit the Holt & Miller Observatory for a bit of rooftop sky gazing! The space provides views of the Philadelphia Skyline while our historic 10-inch Zeiss Refracting Telescope provides views of the moon, most planets, star clusters, nebulae, a few galaxies, and even our closest star, the Sun.

The Holt & Miller Observatory is operated and maintained by The Franklin Institute’s Chief Astronomer, Derrick Pitts, along with the Institute's knowledgeable staff.

Things to Do and See at the Observatory

  • Chief astronomer Derrick Pitts educating in the Holt & Miller Observatory on the roof of The Franklin Institute.
    Stargaze with 10-inch Zeiss Refractor Telescope

    Planets, stars, star clusters, nebulae, and a even few galaxies await!

  • A young boy looking through the sunspotter telescope in The Franklin Institute's Observatory.
    Visit the nearest star—Our Sun

    See what real sunspots and flares look like without the need for shades!

  • The Franklin Institute's telescope trained on a planet above the Philadelphia skyline.
    Travel through our Solar System

    Jupiter, Saturn, Mars, and Venus are often stops on this interplanetary tour!

Interactive Map

Floor

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Map of the fourth floor, showing the location of the Observatory.
Map of the fourth floor, showing the location of the Observatory.