If you know someone who is into astrophotography – or wants to get into photographing space – then check out our list of great astrophotography gift ideas for 2021 and 2022.
We include the best cameras and lenses, as well as more budget-friendly suggestions like the best books and learning guides.
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Each year the most prestigious astrophotography competition in the world is run by Royal Museums Greenwich in London, UK and each year a book is released with the winning images.
This book is the perfect inspiration for a beginner or experienced astrophotographer. It not only features all the stunning images but also lists the equipment and techniques used by each photographer so that you can learn from them.
For more inspiration, see our list of the Best Astrophotography Books.
This is the gift of an hour-long one-to-one personal online tutoring session with leading astrophotographer, Gary Palmer, a Fellow of the Royal Astronomical Society.
This one-on-one session can be customized to cover all types of astrophotography and any level – whether you are a beginner or already advanced.
It is done over Zoom and so can take place anywhere in the world at a time and date convenient to you.
This is a bit of a splurge but these smart telescopes are making waves in the world of astronomy and astrophotography.
They are telescopes with in-built cameras that are operated via your smartphone. They are ultra-easy to use and take all the complication out of building an astrophotography setup with a telescope, mount, camera, tracker, tripod etc.
For more information and to see other options, see our guide to the Best Smart Telescopes.
You can get your budding astrophotographer this mug with an image of the Andromeda galaxy on it.
The mug is available in various sizes and colors.
This book by Thierry Legault is one of the best books out there for learning astrophotography and understanding the different techniques and equipment used.
For more like this, see our guide to the Best Astrophotography Books.
SmugMug is a photography portfolio site that allows photographers to store their photos and easily create their own websites for displaying and selling images as prints and products.
This would make a great gift for an astrophotographer that is building up images and perhaps sharing on Instagram but not yet with their own portfolio website to display (and maybe sell) their best work.
Using the link below gets 15% off any annual plan.
We found that 14mm was the best lens focal length for shooting starry skies and milky way landscapes – see our research in the Best Lens for Astrophotography.
This lens was released brand new in 2021 and is perfect for pairing with a full-frame Sony mirrorless camera like the A73 below.
If you don’t have a Sony camera, see also our guide to the Best 14mm Lenses.
Star trackers are cool tools that sit under your camera and rotate it at the speed of the Earth spinning so that you can stay focused on the stars for longer and take better night sky pictures.
The MoveShootMove star tracker is the best budget option and competes with other models at twice the price.
This is a great astrophotography gift for someone who is already happy with their camera and lens but wants to go to another level with astrophotography.
Check prices by clicking the button below or else see more options in the Best Star Trackers.
A camera bag makes a great gift for an astrophotographer to have all their gear packed up and ready to go when the conditions are right.
This bag has a hardshell to protect that expensive gear from knocks and it also waterproof.
Tripods are an undervalued piece of the astrophotography setup yet they are essential when you need complete stability for taking long exposures of the night sky.
The Radian Carbon Fiber Tripod is one of the few tripods available that has been specifically designed with the astrophotographer in mind and combines sturdiness with a light weight, as well as versatility to use with telescopes as well as cameras.
For more details and other options – from cheaper to best-of-the-best – see the Best Tripods for Astrophotography.
An intervalometer is a remote control device that allows you to operate your DSLR or mirrorless camera wirelessly and gives you increased control over the manual settings.
This enhanced control is perfect for astrophotography where it requires practice to get the perfect exposure time, aperture, ISO settings, and also where you want to take multiple exposures to maybe stack them for improved results.
The Pixel TW-283 is a great intervalometer that gives you all you need to give you take your camera to the next level for astrophotography.
For different options, see the Best Intervalometers for Sony, Canon and Nikon cameras.
This smartphone adapter enables you to attach your phone to your telescope or binoculars, as well as monoculars or spotting scopes.
This is Celestron’s newest model of smartphone adapter and was released in 2021.
It also includes a Bluetooth shutter release for wireless control of your camera’s shooting.
Find the right camera for astrophotography can be pretty tricky – especially if buying for someone else.
At Skies & Scopes, we researched which cameras were most frequently used in images that have been shortlisted to win astrophotography competitions and we found that some older DSLR cameras were still performing well but most people these days are moving towards full-frame sensor mirrorless cameras.
The Sony A7 III was the most successfully used mirrorless camera in our data and it can perform at the highest level for photographing the stars and objects in the night sky.
It was released in 2018 and there are newer and more expensive Sony mirrorless models, but for us the A73 strikes the right balance of price to performance. You can check prices by clicking the button below.
Learn how to shoot stunning timelapse videos – including astro timelapse – with this online video course.
This is a three-hour workshop with 25 individual lessons that can be done at your own pace.
This is ideal for budding photographers and astrophotographers that already know their way around their camera well.
There are also great astrophotography cameras for lower budgets – see our article on the Best Cameras for Astrophotography, which includes all the findings from our research.
If the astrophotographer you are buying for wants to get beyond starry sky images and into deep sky images of galaxies and nebule then they will need a specific kind of telescope.
The Radian 61 is just that – it is designed for astrophotography imaging and not for looking through like a traditional telescope.
For other options, see the Best Telescopes for Astrophotography.
One of the most useful things a nighttime photographer (or astronomer) can have is a headlamp, as it allows you to keep your hands free to operate your camera, telescope or other gear.
There are loads available on Amazon and other outlets but the most important thing you need if buying one for an astrophotographer is for it to have a red light only option. The reason for this is that red light doesn’t ruin your night vision as you adjust to the dark, whereas white light will.
This model has red light and is also USB rechargeable which is preferable to having to use batteries.
Primarily for daytime observing, monoculars can be great for astronomy and astrophotography.
They are small, compact and light and so perfect for taking out on trips or into the field.
This model from Celestron has high magnification (20x) and large aperture (50mm) and so works great for getting close in on the moon or even the planets and some with a small tripod and smartphone adapter to make it perfect for photography.
If you want to understand more read our guide to the Best Monoculars for Stargazing & Astrophotography.
Another good and fairly cheap gift option for a budding astrophotographer is a pair of touchscreen gloves.
These are great for the winter months when it gets colder at night. The touchscreen technology means that you can keep your gloves on whilst operating your camera or smartphone.
Building on the gloves above, a heated jacket is a great gift for an astrophotographer.
It means that they can stay out for longer taking photos in the cold and is also a bit of a safety tool if they are travelling out to a dark site and there’s a risk they might get stuck somewhere.
Just like the jacket above, if your astrophotographer friend likes to drive or hike to places to take pictures then having a small and light power backup for their smartphone can help ensure they don’t get caught somewhere and be unable to make calls.
Another one to prepare the astrophotographer for nights out shooting the stars – a thermos flask so that they can take hot tea or coffee with them.
This 2-In-1 device is firstly a hand warmer for being out on cold nights, and secondly a portable charger that can be used for your smartphone or other devices.
Iceland is known for its stunning landscapes and spectacular scenery and you can gift someone a place on this six-day, five-night photography group trip to the Westfjords region.
The trip is running on August 7 – 12, 2022. Click below for more details.
Be inspired with this wall art set featuring an image of the Milky Way above a coastal landscape.
For more options, see our guide to the Best Space Posters and Wall Art.