Visiting the Very Large Array

Do’s and Don’ts

Pet Policy

Pets are welcome in all outdoor public areas as long as they are kept on a leash no longer than 6 feet. We ask that you abide by the B.A.R.K. principles: (B)ag your pet’s waste, (A)lways leash your pet, (R)espect wildlife, and (K)now where you can go. No pets are allowed in the Visitor Center and Gift Shop. If you have a service dog, please notify the staff and we will do our best to accommodate you.

Electronic Device Policy

When visiting the VLA, please have all electronic devices (cell phones, tablets, or anything else with an “On/Off” switch) in airplane mode and powered off. If you plan to use your electronic device to take photographs, you may briefly turn them on (while in airplane mode) to take your pictures, and then power your device off again once you’ve done so.

Please turn all WiFi and Bluetooth devices off as well.

Photography and Filming

As noted above, visitors to the VLA may photograph what they see from the designated self-guided walking tour. However, any filming or photography done by a commercial or professional entity, or that is done by anyone, amateur or professional, from areas not authorized for general-public tourists or outside the hours authorized for general-public tourists, is considered to be “commercial.” Such photography must be approved in advance, and requires completing an application process, coordinating with NRAO staff, and payment of fees.

There are no exceptions. Any nighttime photography or any photography from anywhere other than the designated walking-tour path requires going through the advance-approval process and paying all fees. This applies to everyone, amateur and professional alike.

The use of all drones is strictly prohibited.

Full information on commercial photography and filming, along with the required application form, is provided below. Please return application to our Public Information & News Manager, Jill Malusky at