Canada is home to some of the best spots for viewing the sky and wonders of the world beyond us. In order to get a good view of the sky, you need a good telescope. Although picking out a telescope based on price alone isn’t hard, you need to consider many other factors to ensure that the telescope you get is worth the money.
Unfortunately, most people have no idea what to look for in a telescope whenever they are first starting out in amateur astronomy. This fact leaves many amateur astronomist clueless about what telescopes to check out. To help you find the best telescope in Canada in 2021, we analyzed 26 products and 872 consumer reviews in 35 hours.
During this time, we found that the Celestron 21036 PowerSeeker 70AZ Telescope is the best telescope on the market because it is affordable and has a 70 mm aperture for enhanced viewings. Although this is our favorite telescope on the market, it isn’t the only good one.
Table of Contents
Telescope Comparative Table
|Celestron 21036 PowerSeeker 70AZ Telescope||
||8.5/10||See price on Amazon|
|Celestron StarSense Explorer DX 22461 130 x 650mm Newtonian Reflector Telescope
||9.0/10||See price on Best Buy|
|NASA Lunar Telescope for Kids||
||8.0/10||See price on Amazon|
|Celestron 21024 FirstScope Telescope||
||8.0/10||See price on Amazon|
Our Pick for The Best Telescope
The Best Overall
If you are looking for the best overall telescope in Canada in 2021, we recommend the Celestron PowerSeeker. This telescope is affordably priced, yet it offers fantastic viewing capabilities and enhanced features.
Celestron 21036 PowerSeeker 70AZ Telescope Video Review
What We Think of The Celestron 21036 PowerSeeker 70AZ Telescope
Finding the best overall telescope is no easy task. Because technology has come such a long way, there are tons of fantastic telescopes on the market. Nevertheless, our favorite is the Celestron PowerSeeker. Anyone looking for a great overall telescope will be happy with this model.
Starting with the basics, the Celestron PowerSeeker is a refracting telescope with an aperture of 70 mm. Additionally, it has a magnifying power of three times. Between the aperture and magnification powers, this telescope is great for both terrestrial and astronomical use.
Even though this telescope comes with great viewing powers, it is super easy to use. In fact, setup does not require any tools, making it one of the easiest telescopes to set up.
Something unique about this telescope is that it also comes with SkyX Planetarium Software. Using the software, you get access to a 10,000 object database that can help you learn about the images you are looking at through your telescope. All the while, the price is highly affordable.
Most people report only positive experiences with the Celestron PowerSeeker. One thing reviewers repeat over and over again is that it is the best telescope for beginners. Obviously, this is a great thing for many buyers, but it is a possible drawback if you are a more experienced astronomer and want a more powerful telescope.
This is my son’s first telescope. He’s seemed interested in astronomy lately, but I didn’t want to spend too much yet. He’s been enjoying looking at the sky with his telescope. He also likes looking out at the island across from us and is amazed at everything he can see using the telescope.
One reason why the telescope may not be ideal for professionals is because it only has an aperture of 70 mm. Although this aperture is fantastic for beginners, most professionals should already have a 70 mm and probably want something more powerful.
Still, beginners will have more than a good time using the Celestron PowerSeeker. Even though the specs aren’t necessarily professional grade, they are fantastic for beginners, especially when you consider how affordable the product is.
Celestron 21036 PowerSeeker 70AZ Telescope Specifications
- Brand: Celestron
- Eyepiece: Barlow
- Lens Diameter: 70 mm
- Mount: Equatorial
- Weight: 2.65 kg
Celestron 21036 PowerSeeker 70AZ Telescope Pros and Cons
- 70 mm aperture
- Great for beginners
- Easy to setup
- High affordable
- Not ideal for professionals
Our Final Opinion about the Celestron 21036 PowerSeeker 70AZ Telescope[usrlist Quality:4.6 Effectiveness:4.5 Design:4.7 Price:4.7]
If you are a beginner who wants to dive into more serious astronomy, the Celestron PowerSeeker is a great place to start. Although it might not offer enough for professionals, most people will be more than satisfied with the power of this telescope.
Our Upgrade Pick for a Telescope
The Upgrade Pick
If you are more serious about star gazing and already have a 70 mm aperture, check out the Celestron StarSense. Complete with a 130 mm aperture, you can see just about anything with this telescope and its numerous features, but it is highly expensive.
What We Think of The Celestron StarSense Explorer DX 22461 130 x 650mm Newtonian Reflector Telescope
Beginning astronomers who want to expand their skills need a high performing telescope that is easy to use while still offering fantastic features. The Celestron StarSense is the best for these two purposes, making it our high performance pick.
The Celestron StarSense is a reflector telescope with a 130 mm aperture and 650 mm focal length. Together, these features allow your telescope to see bright views of the universe, including the Orion nebula, additional moons, and more.
For further enhanced viewing, this telescope comes with a fully adjustable tripod and altazimuth mount. This mount makes a world of a difference because it allows you to follow targets and keep your telescope completely straight during viewing.
The telescope comes equipped with numerous additional features as well. For example, you can connect it to your smartphone. One of the more unique features of this telescope is that it comes with a patent-pending sky recognition technology and a Lost In Space algorithm that can match your star patterns to the internal database.
Needless to say, you can basically do anything you want using this telescope. Whether you want to simply gaze at stars or take beautiful pictures of stunning moons far away, the Celestron StarSense offers exactly what you are looking for.
This my first telescope. pleased with it. Easy to assemble. The smart phone guidance works great. One small issue is the finder scope. It uses a small disc battery. I forgot to turn the switch off, And it went dead in just a couple of days. No big deal, just annoying. Also, I have not been able to find any information on how to maintain the telescope. I’m sure it will eventually need some readjustment on mirror, etc.
According to customer reviews, there are absolutely no complaints about the functionality of the telescope. So, you know that the product will likely live up to your expectations since it has lived up to thousands of others.
Although there are no drawbacks in terms of telescope performance, there is a giant drawback to the Celestron StarSense. Because this telescope is so impressive, it has an outrageous price tag. Most beginners will likely not want to pay for this telescope.
Aside from the insane price tag, the Celestron StarSense is nearly perfect in every way. If you are looking to kick your star gazing up a notch, this is the perfect device to do it with.
Celestron StarSense Explorer DX 22461 130 x 650mm Newtonian Reflector Telescope Specifications
- Brand: Celestron
- Eyepiece: 22 and 10 mm
- Lens Diameter: 130 mm
- Mount: Tripod with altazimuth mount
- Weight: 8.16 kg
Celestron StarSense Explorer DX 22461 130 x 650mm Newtonian Reflector Telescope Pros and Cons
- 130 mm aperture
- Numerous features for enhanced viewing
- Enhanced mount
- Easy to setup
- Highly expensive
Our Final Opinion About the Celestron StarSense Explorer DX 22461 130 x 650mm Newtonian Reflector Telescope[usrlist Quality:4.9 Effectiveness:5 Design:4.9 Price:4]
If you are looking to take your star watching to the next level, you need the Celestron StarSense. Although expensive, it is the best telescope in terms of performance and functionality. People who just watch stars for fun should go with a cheaper model, though.
Our Child Pick for a Telescope
The Kid Pick
If you are looking to gift a telescope to a child that you love, we recommend NASA Lunar Telescope. This scope comes with everything a child would need to inspire curiosity and learn about the world around them. It is not suitable for teenagers and other individuals with more experience, but it makes a great pick for young children.
NASA Lunar Telescope for Kids Video Review
What We Think of The NASA Lunar Telescope for Kids
Children are naturally curious and often want to see the world around them. Telescopes are one of the best ways to do this, but most telescopes are too expensive and confusing for young children to use. Give your child the gift of learning with the NASA Lunar Telescope. This telescope is perfectly made for children and makes learning fun.
The NASA Lunar Telescope is equipped with easy to use yet effective technology so that children can master the telescope while still seeing the world around them. For example, it comes with a finder scope, low power eye piece, and high power eye piece. Together, these tools allow your child to see the moon and other items of similar distance.
The telescope is even designed with the NASA logo. This logo will be exciting to your child and make them feel as though they are already a scientist.
In terms of price, this telescope is slightly expensive in comparison to other children’s telescopes, but it is notably more affordable than adult telescopes. Given that this telescope has much better features than other telescopes made for children, the price is completely reasonable.
To make the price even more affordable, this telescope comes with a 100% satisfaction guarantee. Because of this guarantee, the company urges you to report any issues or bad experiences so that they can rectify the issue.
Nice telescope. We have taken it out of town a lot to look at the stars. Transports easily. It has a helpful manual that walks you through everything nicely. Comes with two different scopes that can help with different distances, great beginner telescope for children.
Now for the downsides. If you have older children, they might not have as much fun with this telescope. It simply is not designed with super powerful lenses and capabilities since it is made for children. If you have older children or teenagers, we recommend going with our best overall pick, which isn’t much more expensive than this option but has tremendously better qualities.
The fact that this telescope is not ideal for older children and adults is the only downside of it. Assuming that your child is young and still has time to use a telescope of this caliber, the NASA Lunar Telescope will make a great gift.
NASA Lunar Telescope for Kids Specifications
- Brand: Discover with Dr. Cool
- Eyepiece: Galilean
- Lens Diameter: Not listed
- Mount: Equatorial
- Weight: 2.3 lbs.
NASA Lunar Telescope for Kids Pros and Cons
- Perfect for children
- Fun NASA logo
- Reasonably priced
- Easy to use and setup
- Not suitable for older children and teenagers
Our Final Opinion About the NASA Lunar Telescope for Kids[usrlist Quality:4.6 Effectiveness:4.5 Design:4.8 Price:4.6]
Help your child tap into their exploratory nature with the NASA Lunar Telescope. This telescope is worth the price for children, but older children and teenagers will likely appreciate a more adult telescope.
Our Budget Pick for a Telescope
The Budget Pick
Don’t neglect your passion of looking at the stars just because you are on a budget. Instead, opt for a budget pick, such as the Celestron FirstScope. Even though this telescope misses some crucial pieces, it is still highly affordable, portable, and good for beginners.
Celestron 21024 FirstScope Telescope Video Review
What We Think of the Celestron 21024 FirstScope Telescope
The Celestron FirstScope is a unique telescope because it is highly affordable. It costs under $100, which is why it is our value pick. At the same time, it is highly lightweight and portable. Weighing under 5 pounds, you can take this telescope with you anywhere with ease.
At the same time, the Celestron FirstScope comes with shockingly good features, such as a 76 mm reflector. This makes the lens size bigger than the best overall pick. Beginners will especially love this slightly larger aperture.
Because this telescope is so affordable, portable, and impressive, it makes a great beginner buy. Even if you aren’t quite sure how often you will use telescopes, you will probably get your money’s worth from this product due to its affordability without sacrificing much visibility.
Because this telescope is more affordable and has a larger aperture, you might be wondering why we didn’t list it as the best overall pick. The answer is simple. This telescope lacks many features that a best overall telescope needs.
For example, the optical Finder leaves a lot to be desired. In fact, most complaints about this telescope had to do with this part. It simply does not work as well as most other telescopes.
I’ve only used this once because of weather, but it was easy to set up and use. I need to fiddle around with it more and look at some online tutorials. It has been great so far.
Another drawback of this model is that it isn’t as beginner friendly. Because of its small size, it isn’t as intuitive as most of the other telescopes on this list. If you already know how to work a telescope, you probably won’t have much issue, but beginners will.
Something else we don’t like is that the mount is not suitable for traditional telescopes. Even though it works great for this model, you won’t be able to use it for any other models you buy.
Since the Celestron FirstScope is so affordable, you shouldn’t look past this telescope if you are on a tight budget. It might not offer the best optics or convenience, but it won’t destroy your budget either.
Celestron 21024 FirstScope Telescope Specifications
- Brand: Celestron
- Eyepiece: Not listed
- Lens Diameter: 76 mm
- Mount: Altazimuth
- Weight: 4.5 lbs.
Celestron 21024 FirstScope Telescope Pros and Cons
- Highly affordable
- Compact and portable
- 76 mm aperture
- Difficult to use
- Features lacking
Our Final Opinion About the Celestron 21024 FirstScope Telescope[usrlist Quality:4.5 Effectiveness:4.3 Design:4.4 Price:5]
If you are on a budget, the Celestron FirstScope is one of the few telescopes that is super affordable and worth your money. Even though it isn’t as great as the other telescopes we’ve looked at, it is still a great budget buy.
Alternative Products to Consider
Celestron 21063 AstroMaster 90 AZ Refractor Telescope Review
The Dual Purpose Pick
Most telescopes are designed for either terrestrial or astronomical use. With the Celestron AstroMaster, you get the best of both worlds. Even though the tripod is outright useless, the telescope itself is pretty impressive.
Celestron 21063 AstroMaster 90 AZ Refractor Telescope Video Review
What We Think of the Celestron 21063 AstroMaster 90 AZ Refractor Telescope
We are impressed with the Celestron AstroMaster for its viewing purposes. It has a 90 mm aperture that makes it suitable for both terrestrial and celestial viewing.
In addition to the dual viewing capabilities, the Celestron AstroMaster is highly durable. It is made from high quality materials, and many customers report that the telescope itself can handle a lot. This is a great benefit because it means that you work telescope will last a long time.
The telescope also comes with a box of accessories and a storage kit for these accessories. Furthermore, the Celestron AstroMaster comes with viewing software so that you can learn about star prints on your PC.
Pricewise, this telescope is a bit expensive. It isn’t outrageous, but it is more expensive than our best overall pick. This price would not be that big of a deal if all aspects of the telescope were fantastic, but that is not the case.
I bought this for my husband as a birthday present. He loves it. Easy to assemble and use. Absolutely love it!
Several customers report that even though the telescope works well, the mount and stand are completely useless. These useless features forced customers to purchase a new stand. Given the already expensive price tag, that’s the last thing you want from this telescope.
Looking at the telescope by itself, it is a pretty great model. You might especially like the Celestron AstroMaster if you want to view things both in the sky and on land.
Celestron 21063 AstroMaster 90 AZ Refractor Telescope Specifications
- Brand: Celestron
- Eyepiece: Not listed
- Lens Diameter: 90 mm
- Mount: Altazimuth
- Weight: 16.5 lbs.
Celestron 21063 AstroMaster 90 AZ Refractor Telescope Pros and Cons
- Suitable for terrestrial and celestial viewing
- 90 mm aperture
- Comes with additional accessories
- Comes with software you can connect to your PC
- Bad mounting pieces
Our Final Opinion About the Celestron 21063 AstroMaster 90 AZ Refractor Telescope[usrlist Quality:4.3 Effectiveness:4.8 Design:4.5 Price:4.2]
If you need a dual use telescope, we recommend the Celestron AstroMaster, but note that you will want to buy in alternative tripod and mount to go with the telescope.
Celestron StarSense Explorer LT 22452 114 x 1000mm Newtonian Reflector Telescope Review
The Compatibility Pick
The Celestron StarSense LT 22452 is a good option if you want to connect your telescope to your phone. It has all of the same benefits as our high performance pick at a much more affordable price due to its smaller aperture, but it is still expensive.
Celestron StarSense Explorer LT 22452 114 x 1000mm Newtonian Reflector Telescope Video Review
What We Think of The Celestron StarSense Explorer LT 22452 114 x 1000mm Newtonian Reflector Telescope
If you remember correctly, the Celestron StarSense was our high performance pick. This telescope is in the same line as our upgrade pick, but it is not the exact same telescope. We have named the Celestron StarSense LT 22452 our compatibility pick because it is super easy to hook up and use with your phone.
Much like our upgrade pick, the Celestron StarSense LT 22452 can connect to your phone so that it can analyze the night and calculate your position in real time. You don’t have to worry about your phone falling either. There is a built-in dock that is compatible with most smartphones.
In addition to its compatibility features, the Celestron StarSense LT 22452 has amazing viewing capabilities. It has a 114 aperture and 1000 mm focal length. These features provide sharp viewing experiences for many areas in the universe, though the aperture is smaller on this model then on our upgrade pick.
This model offers many of the same features as our high performance pick, but it is much more affordable. It is still highly expensive in comparison to other telescopes not within the StarSense line, but it is nearly half the price of our high performance pick.
I bought this for my teenage son who has an interest in astronomy but not a ton of experience using telescopes. He absolutely loves it, and it is tough to get him to come inside as he could play with this telescope for many hours. He is able to view and identify everything than he is looking for and did a great report in science class about his findings. His teacher was impressed!
The reason why it is so much more affordable is because it doesn’t offer as good of viewing powers. Its aperture is about 15 mm smaller, resulting in less detail. Still, 114 mm aperture is super impressive.
Aside from its expensive price tag, we have no complaints about the Celestron StarSense LT 22452. It’s a great product if you loved our high performance pic but need to save money.
Celestron StarSense Explorer LT 22452 114 x 1000mm Newtonian Reflector Telescope Specifications
- Brand: Celestron
- Eyepiece: Barlow lens
- Lens Diameter: 114 aperture
- Mount: Tripod
- Weight: 4.71 kg
Celestron StarSense Explorer LT 22452 114 x 1000mm Newtonian Reflector Telescope Pros and Cons
- Easy compatibility with phone
- More affordable version to our high performance pick
- Great features and viewing
- Still expensive
Our Final Opinion About the Celestron StarSense Explorer LT 22452 114 x 1000mm Newtonian Reflector Telescope[usrlist Quality:4.8 Effectiveness:4.7 Design:4.7 Price:4.3]
Buy the Celestron StarSense LT 22452 if you need a highly compatible telescope. It also makes a great choice if you were in love with our high performance pick but didn’t love its price tag. Unfortunately, it is still expensive, even though it is more affordable than the upgrade pick.
Celestron 70mm Travel Scope DX Portable Refractor Telescope Review
The Travel Pick
You never know when you will want to get out and look at the stars. Take the Celestron Travel Scope with you on your next adventure because it is specifically designed for travel, but there seems to be serious quality control issues which may cause you to hesitate.
Celestron 70mm Travel Scope DX Portable Refractor Telescope Video Review
What We Think of The Celestron 70mm Travel Scope DX Portable Refractor Telescope
The Celestron Travel Scope is a great travel telescope, especially for beginners. It has a 70 mm aperture and Barlow lenses. These features offer pretty good viewing, especially when on the road.
For further convenience on the road, the Celestron Travel Scope is complete with easy setup and a bonus bag. These two features mean that you can quickly set up the telescope on the go but keep it safely within the bag whenever not in use.
Plus, you can connect this telescope to your phone using Bluetooth shutter release and a smartphone adapter. This makes it easy to upload your photos onto different sites and social media.
The price of the Celestron Travel Scope it is affordable. It is comparable to our best overall telescope in terms of price, which means it’s affordable. Most people will be able to squeeze this into their budget.
There are some downsides to be aware of about this model. Most importantly, there are serious quality control issues. Numerous customers report that the mount does not hold the item in place. Some users have even reported scratches on the lens. To make matters worse, several customers complained that the vendor does not contact them back.
The tripod is feeble. I attached it to a different tripod instead. Knobs are hard to focus. Still overall good for beginners and children.
Since there are such serious quality control concerns about the Celestron Travel Scope, it wouldn’t be our go-to choice, but you might want to consider it if you want a travel telescope.
Celestron 70mm Travel Scope DX Portable Refractor Telescope Specifications
- Brand: Celestron
- Eyepiece: Barlow
- Lens Diameter: 70 mm
- Mount: Not listed
- Weight: 3.3 lbs.
Celestron 70mm Travel Scope DX Portable Refractor Telescope Pros and Cons
- Designed for travel
- Comes with travel bag
- Easy to setup
- Terrible mount
- Quality control concerns
Our Final Opinion About the Celestron 70mm Travel Scope DX Portable Refractor Telescope[usrlist Quality:4.1 Effectiveness:4.3 Design:4.0 Price:4.6]
Be cautious when purchasing the Celestron Travel Scope due to its severe quality control issues. Even though it may be convenient for travel, it can potentially be a mistake.
Why Should You Trust Us?
All our recommendations on The Good Choice are the result of many weeks or months of research, comparisons, analyses of user’s ratings and if need be, interviews with experts and scientists. You will quickly notice that the products we suggest here are not the most expensive or the most trendy: they are those that will best perform their daily tasks, passing all security, reliability and efficiency tests while having an appealing price-quality ratio for everyone.
In the end, the products we recommend are those we would have wanted to buy, or those we will choose for our friends and family.
Things to Know Before Buying a Telescope
What’s the difference between a refractor and reflector telescope?
The difference between a refractor and reflector telescope is where the lens is placed. In a refractor, the lens is placed at the front of the tube so that the image is refracted, hence the name. In comparison, a reflector places the lens at the back of the tube so that the image is reflected. Refractors are more common, but they are more expensive too.
What is a Cassegrain telescope?
A Cassegrain telescope is a specific type of compound telescope. Compound telescopes use lenses and mirrors to create a compact and lightweight telescope. On a Cassegrain, the light is reflected from a secondary convex mirror. There are subcategories to Cassegrain telescopes as well.
Do I need a mount?
Technically, you do not need a mount to see through a telescope, but it will improve your viewing dramatically. With a telescope mount, the telescope will remain steady, resulting in better vision. If you take your astronomy viewings seriously, you won’t get far without a mount. You can start off with a tripod mount but upgrading to more stable mounts are even better.
What type of telescope should I get for viewing planets and moons?
The best telescope for viewing moons and planets is a refracting telescope. This telescope has better capabilities at creating a contrasting image. If you are on a tight budget, a reflector telescope will work too, but the image may not be as clear.
Is magnification important?
Magnification is important, but aperture is more important. If a telescope offers good magnification with a bad aperture, you might be able to zoom in on something, but the vision won’t be clear. So, it’s more important to check out the aperture than the magnification, though nearly all telescopes with good apertures have good magnification too.
How to Properly Choose Your Telescope
Properly choosing the right telescope is difficult. Telescopes are often underappreciated in our society, they are difficult devices that require a lot of consideration and technology. Unlike many other devices that have factors to consider, you only need to consider three factors when it comes to telescopes: aperture, telescope type, and mount.
Even though There are fewer factors to consider when it comes to telescopes, it doesn’t make the decision any easier. In fact, what few features you need to consider are difficult to understand as a beginner. Let’s take a look at each one of these factors in more detail.
Aperture is the most important consider in any telescope. Aperture is just a fancy term that means the diameter of the lens, mirror, or objective. Apertures are most commonly expressed in mm. The larger the aperture, the better. Aim for an aperture of at least 70 mm.
Whenever the aperture is large, you can see fainter and minor detail then you can with a smaller one. Whereas a 17 mm aperture is the base, an aperture of just 10 mm more allows you to see beyond the Milky Way on a dark night.
The larger the aperture is, the larger the telescope as a whole will be. So, you might need to settle for a smaller aperture if you don’t have enough room for a large telescope.
The next thing to consider is telescope type. There are three types of telescopes: refractor, reflector, and compound.
- Refactors are telescopes with the lens at the front of the tube. Most people are familiar with refractors. These telescopes are often low maintenance and provide pretty good optical quality, but they can get expensive fast.
- Reflectors work in the opposite way. Lenses out the back of the main tube. Reflectors tend to be the most affordable telescope, but they require more adjustment. Luckily, adjusting reflectors is relatively easy.
- Compound telescopes use lenses and mirrors. These telescopes are less common, but they are often compact and lightweight. There are different types of compound telescopes, such as Cassegrain telescopes.
You’re more than likely going to buy a refractor or reflector. Most likely, the determining factor will be your budget.
Even though the mount is not directly related to the telescope, it is an important feature to consider. Often, telescopes come with mounts included, such as tripods, but more expensive telescopes do not an require expensive mounts as a result.
If you were just starting out, you can simply purchase a telescope that it comes with a tripod and then upgrade to something sturdier. However, you might want to go ahead and purchase a high performing mount if you know you will use your telescope for serious endeavors.
We do our best to provide you with a comparative guide of telescopes allowing you to choose the best product possible. If we are missing information or new models, do not hesitate to leave a comment below or to send us a message.