Leonid meteor shower: Best time and place to view the shooting stars in PH

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Metro Manila (CNN Philippines, November 17) — Shooting stars are dazzling the sky this week and it will be visible in the Philippines.

PAGASA Astronomical Observation and Time Service Unit Chief Mario Raymundo on Tuesday gave tips on how to best see the Leonid meteor shower. It will peak on Tuesday, but is visible two days before and after. It can be seen from midnight until dawn, but the best viewing time is from 2 a.m. to 4 a.m.

Raymundo said the ideal location is in the provinces or shores, but it will still be visible in urban cities since there are no weather disturbances threatening the country.

"Ang observation ng meteor showers, kailangan nasa madilim kang lugar. So advisable, mas maganda sa probinsya, sa baybaying dagat. Pero dito sa siyudad, maraming city light, medyo malilimitahan ang makikitang shooting stars," he told CNN Philippines.

[Translation: To observe meteor showers, you should be somewhere dark. So it can be seen better in provinces, in shores. But here in the city where there are lights, the number of shooting stars may be limited.]

It will most likely be coming from the eastern side, but PAGASA advises viewing the meteor shower with a friend — with social distancing, of course — to ensure that all sides are covered.

"Dapat hindi lang isa ang mag-oobserve, dapat talikuran para makita. Pero ang track niya ay tutuon sa Leo constellation," the official added.

[Translation: You should observe it with someone, with your backs against each other, so you can see it. Its track will focus on the Leo constellation.]

There is no need to use a special equipment to view the shooting stars.

The phenomenon happens when the Comet Tempel-Tuttle crosses the Earth’s orbit, creating a vaporizing shower of debris in the atmosphere. This comet visits the inner solar system every 33 years.

The Leonid meteor shower gets its name from the constellation Leo the Lion, as the meteors appear to be flying out of the stars that make up the mane. But you don't need to look in the direction of the constellation, because the meteors will be visible all across the sky.