Skye & Lochalsh enjoy some of the darkest skies in Europe. Free from the light pollution which blights towns and cities, our inky black skies present the heavens in all their spectacular beauty. There's plenty to discover, from the bejewelled cluster of the Pleiades or Orion's mighty belt in November, to the magical meteor showers of the Perseids or the graceful constellation of Cygnus the Swan, in August. rule
Nine unique locations throughout the island have been recognised as being perfect for viewing our night sky. All enjoy good access, with firm ground for wheelchairs, and all promise an unforgettable experience on a clear night.

For more information about each location click the orange telescopes on the map opposite.

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If you would like more information about the night skye in and around Skye & Lochalsh contact our resident expert by email HERE

MOON: New Moon 7th, First Qtr 14th, Full Moon 22rd, Last Qtr 30th.

PLANETS: MERCURY: Becoming and evening object and will be the best apparition this year. Greatest elongation on 18th. VENUS: Not visible this month. MARS: Rising a little after midnight in Scorpius. Growing in brightness and size at mag -2.1 and 18.3 arcsec. JUPITER: Dominates the evening sky and is visible throughout the night. SATURN: Rising about midnight at mag +0.4 and earlier by the end of the month. URANUS: Not visible this month. NEPTUNE: Rising early morning at the beginning of the month but by 2 am at the end.

METEORS: The Lyrids from 18th to 25th of the month but moonlight will interfere. Maximum on 21st with a predicted hourly rate of 10.

COMETS: Comet Ikeya-Murakami is visible in binoculars or telescope at mag 9.05 to the north-west of Regulus.

With Leo now high up on the meridian if you have a telescope why not look for M65,66 and NGC3268 all these objects are about 9th magnitude. To the east of Leo and between it and Bootes is the constellation of Coma Berenices. Within its boundaries lie a multitude of Spiral Galaxies so well worth looking at. Vega is now once again rising in the east followed by Cygnus whilst Orion is slowly slipping away to the west.

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Download a PDF of our
Dark Skye leaflet HERE
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