The best places to watch this week's stunning meteor shower

A stunning meteor shower is happening this week, and you don’t want to miss it.

Every October, we are treated to the Orionid meteor shower, which takes place throughout the month.

But the best time to watch, when experts estimate you can see about 20 meteors an hour, will be in the wee hours of the morning just before dawn on Wednesday, Oct. 21 and Thursday, Oct. 22, according to

Though the moon is relatively bright this time of month, it will have set by the time the Earth passes through the densest part of the debris tail from the famous Halley’s Comet and, incidentally, when the Orionids peak. That means the moon’s light won’t get in the way of spotting some meteors, or falling stars as we sometimes like to call them.  

The GIF below shows a time-lapse of the stunning 2012 Orionid meteor shower:

But where’s the best place to go to watch this week’s meteor shower? 

City lights drown out most objects in the night sky, including meteors. So, your best bet is to get out to a dark field, far away from the city. 

Here’s a map that Mike Hankey provided Business Insider showing light pollution from city lights across the country:

“If you made it to an orange zone or better, you’d be able to observe,” Hankey told Business Insider in an email last August, when we spoke with him about how to watch the Perseid meteor shower. But his advice still holds for this week’s meteor shower.

“Another way to gauge the light — if you can see some stars, then you can see some meteors. If you look up and see nothing, then you need to keep moving away from the city.”

And if there’s no good place for you to observe, then your best bet is to watch NASA’s live broadcast of the Orionid meteor shower beginning Tuesday, Oct. 20 at 10 pm ET. 

If you miss NASA’s broadcast, the online observatory, Slooh, will also be hosting a live broadcast of the event the next day beginning at 8 pm ET on Wednesday Oct. 21.

Check out NASA’s LiveStream below:

NOW WATCH: Here’s what you’ll actually see when you watch this week’s meteor shower

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