Five planets in alignment

Five planets in alignment

Looking West on 27 March 2023

Anglesey, north Wales, has some of the darkest skies in Europe.

Astronomer Jake Foster from Royal Observatory Greenwich said such alignments were very particular to our perspective from Earth.

The planets aren't aligned right now, they are all spread out across the Solar System but just from our perspective, every once in a while they get close enough to each other in the sky that we're able to see quite a few at once.

Mercury, Jupiter, Venus, Uranus, Mars, and the Moon aligned in an arc across the evening sky on Monday, with some visible to the naked eye.

This is often called "a planetary parade" and was visible after sunset in the west.

A good view of the horizon and clear skies offered the best chance of spotting the alignment.

The best shot at spotting the planets on Monday was away from any bright city lights, somewhere with a clear, unobstructed view.

You needed to be observing early in the evening because Mercury and Jupiter quickly disappeared over the horizon.

Some of the best views were from northern parts of Scotland and its islands because of clear skies.