Former cabinet minister Margaret Austin will promote Tekapo as the world's first night sky reserve at a conference in Paris next week.
Austin, who is chairwoman of New Zealand's Starlight Reserve committee, is attending the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organisation (Unesco) meeting on behalf of New Zealand and the Mackenzie district's Dark Sky bid.
She will press on Friday (NZtime) for the adoption of the Unesco world heritage park concept for the night sky reserve so its vision and principles are fully accepted and confirmed by the international organisation.
The bid comes during the 2009 International Year of Astronomy.
Starlight Reserve committee spokesman Graeme Murray said many places overseas have lost touch with stars, but the Mackenzie Country still had a pristine dark sky. The reserve, which would be a world first, would ensure New Zealand was kept on the astronomy and astro-tourism map.
Murray says that while a reserve of this nature has never been created anywhere in the world, he believes the venture will be successful.
Murray says the aim is to have restrictions on lights in the region, to preserve the beautiful night sky that so many in rural New Zealand take for granted.
He says people in parts of North America, Japan and Europe do not have the same privilege of being able to stand outside in awe of the stars - but when you look down at Lake Tekapo, he says, it has a beautiful soft glow which isn't affected by bright lights.