The Draconid meteor shower will peak on the evening of October 8, 2024

The Draconid meteor shower 2024 will start on October 6 and end on October 10, and you will see peak activity on October 8, 2024, according to the American Meteor Society.

It is a variable shower that usually produces about 10 meteors per hour during peak activity under clear, dark skies, but occasionally its rate increases significantly.

The radiant position of the Draconid meteor shower
Look high in the northwest direction of the sky in the evening to see the Draconid meteor shower. Vega, the fourth brightest star in the night sky will help you to find the radiant of Draconid meteor shower. You can easily recognize the star Vega with your naked eye. (Image credit: Stellarium)

Best time to see the Draconid meteor shower in 2024

The best time to see the Draconid meteor shower in 2024 is in the evening (at around 8 p.m. local time) of October 8.

The radiant of the Draconid meteor shower reaches its highest point in the sky in the early evening (when darkness falls), and then its altitude (height) gradually decreases as the night progresses.

However, it takes time for the sky to become fully dark, so I will suggest you start watching Draconids (Draconid meteors) from 8 p.m. local time and continue it till late evening (till 11 p.m. local time).

Please remember that it would be very hard for you to see the Draconid meteor shower after midnight, as the radiant is located near the horizon after midnight.

Radiant is the point from where the meteors of Draconid meteor shower appear to radiate in the sky. Radiant of Draconid meteor shower is located in the constellation Draco.

Best places to see the Draconid meteor shower in 2024

Countries located in the high-northern latitudes (from 45°N to 60°N) are the best places to see the Draconid meteor shower in the world.

Countries located in the high northern latitudes are the USA, Canada, England, Scotland, Norway, Sweden, Finland, Russia, Greenland, Denmark, Lithuania, Germany, Switzerland, Ukraine, France, and Croatia.

Although the Draconid meteor shower favors observers located in the high-northern latitudes, it can be seen from the countries located in the mid- and low-northern latitudes as well.

However, the observation time will be limited for the observers located in the mid- and low-northern latitudes, and you have to watch as early as possible in the evening.

The real bad news is waiting for the observers located in the Southern Hemisphere. The Draconid meteor shower cannot effectively be observed from the Southern Hemisphere.

Best direction to see the Draconid meteor shower in 2024

The Draconid meteor shower radiates from the constellation Draco. Look high in the north-west direction of the sky in the evening of October 8 to find the constellation Draco.

However, I will suggest you don’t look at the constellation Draco only to see the Draconid meteor shower, as the meteors closer to the radiant have shorter trails and are difficult to observe. So move your gaze across the entire north-west direction of the sky.

If you look at the constellation Draco only, then you may miss most of the spectacular Draconid meteors, as the most spectacular meteors travel a longer path in the sky.

You will see a far greater number of Draconid meteors when you look 25° to 45° away from the radiant, where the meteor paths appear longer.

How to see the Draconid meteor shower in 2024

You don’t need any special equipment, such as binoculars or a telescope, to see the Draconid meteor shower. A meteor shower is best seen with the naked eye.

However, you need a bit of patience, a clear sky with no clouds or hazes, and an area far from city lights to see the best Draconids.

You don’t even need to identify the radiant of the Draconid meteor shower or the constellation Draco in order to see the Draconid meteor shower. You just need to know when the constellation Draco reaches its highest point in the sky.

The constellation Draco reaches its highest point in the sky in the evening, so look straight overhead in the sky in the evening and you will see the Draconid meteor shower in any direction of the sky. 

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Ashim

Ashim Chandra Sarkar founded Space & Telescope in 2022. He holds a M.Sc. in physics and has five years of research experience in optical astronomy. His passion for astronomy inspired him to open this website. He is responsible for the editorial vision of spaceandtelescope.com.

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