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Announcements

  • To reduce the risk of exposure to the COVID-19 virus by both our staff and our visitors, the Very Large Array is CLOSED to the public until further notice. NO PUBLIC SERVICES ARE AVAILABLE
Visiting the Very Large Array

Visit the Very Large Array

Welcome!

The Very Large Array Radio Telescope facility is a two-hour drive from Albuquerque, 50 miles west of Socorro, New Mexico. The Visitor Center features an award-winning documentary narrated by Jodie Foster, plus exhibits describing radio astronomy and the VLA telescope. A self-guided walking tour features large, informative signs and takes you to the base of one of the giant dish antennas. A gift shop offers VLA souvenirs and educational materials.

Hours

To reduce the risk of exposure to the COVID-19 virus by both our staff and our visitors, the Very Large Array is CLOSED TO THE PUBLIC until further notice. NO SERVICES ARE AVAILABLE.

Site Open: 8:30am – Sunset daily
First Saturday Tours: 11am, 1pm, 3pm
Third Saturday Tours: 11 am, 1pm, 3pm
Gift Shop: 9:00am – 4:00pm daily*

*closed Thanksgiving, Christmas Eve, Christmas Day, and New Years Day

Admission

Ages 17 and under FREE
Adults 18+ $6.00
Seniors (65+) $5.00
Socorro & Catron County Resident bringing a paying guest FREE

Admission to site includes:

  • Access to our Visitor Center and Gift Shop
  • Our outdoor self-guided walking tour (weather permitting)
  • A VLA guided tour, delivered by a staff member (when available; see event calendar for guided tour dates)

Contact

Gift Shop Phone Number: 575-835-7410

Directions

The Very Large Array Radio Telescope is a two hour drive from Albuquerque, 50 miles west of Socorro, New Mexico.

When driving west from Socorro:

  1. Travel through the small town of Magdalena and continue on US-60.
  2. Turn left onto NM-52 just west of mile marker 93.
  3. Drive 2.5 miles then turn right on NM-166 (Old Highway 60).
  4. Drive 1.6 miles and the VLA Visitor Center will be on your right.

When driving east from the Arizona border on US-60:

  1. Drive through the town of Datil. Just past mile marker 90 you will cross rail road tracks that mark the North arm of the array.
  2. Continue east on US-60 past mile marker 92 and turn right onto NM-52.
  3. Drive 2.5 miles and then turn right on NM-166 (Old Highway 60).
  4. Drive 1.6 miles and the VLA Visitor Center will be on your right.

Note: NRAO has offices located in Socorro, NM, and entering “Very Large Array” into direction-finding services may sometimes direct you to this location. Use the Google map below to get directions to the VLA Visitor Center. GPS coordinates for the site: 34 04’43.497N 107 37’05.819W. Please note that you may not have cellular or data reception within several miles of the VLA. All roads leading to the VLA are paved. If you are on a dirt road you are not on the correct route.