THE Draconid meteor shower is peaking this week, giving star-gazers across Scotland the unique chance to catch a glimpse of this extraordinary event.

It is estimated that around five shooting stars will be visible in the night sky so long as we're lucky enough to enjoy some clear weather.

With the Draconid meteor shower set to peak this weekend, here is everything you need to know.

What causes the Draconid meteor shower?

The annual Draconid meteor shower is caused when Earth passes through debris left behind by comet Giacobini-Zinner.

The tiny meteorites created from this comet fragmentation burn up as they enter the planet's atmosphere, creating bright shooting stars across the night sky.

When does the Draconid meteor shower peak this year?

The Draconid meteor shower takes place between Friday October 6 and Tuesday October 10 but is set to peak the night of Sunday October 8 and Monday October 9.

The best time to see the shower will be in the evening just after nightfall, unlike most other showers which are visible after midnight.

Astronomers share how best to see the Draconid meteor shower

Astronomers recommend lying on your back and using the naked eye, allowing you to see as much of the sky as possible.

Nasa has also advised giving your eyes time to adjust to the dark to see the celestial event better.

This can be done by staying away from phone screens and bright lights as these can negatively impact your night vision.

Where are the best places to see the Draconid meteor shower in Scotland

There are a number of areas across Scotland perfect for seeing the Draconid meteor shower. These places are away from light pollution and the hustle and bustle of city life.

Here are some great places across Scotland for star gazing, according to Visit Scotland.

Galloway Forest Park

Known for its exceptionally dark skies, the site is the UK's largest forest park.

North Ronaldsay

Orkney's northernmost island North Ronaldsay was recently recognised as a 'dark sky island', making it ideal for enjoying the night sky to its fullest.

Tomintoul and Glenlivet - Cairngorms Dark Sky Park

Dark sky events take place here all year round with the Cairngorms Astronomy Group regularly watching the sky.


The town of Moffat recently adopted new street lighting to help keep light pollution at bay, seeing it named Europe's first 'dark sky town'.