On January 31, 2018, stargazers and keen astrologists watched the arrival of a rare lunar event – a super blue blood moon. This spectacle is a combination of three astronomical phenomena: a blue moon, the second full moon of the month; a supermoon, when the moon is closer to Earth in its orbit so appears much brighter than normal; and a blood moon, when the moon passes through the Earth’s shadow and adopts a reddish hue.
While the UK only experienced two of these events – the supermoon and the blue moon – those based in other countries got to appreciate the full trio of moons. This lunar trifecta was first seen in Australia, before reaching Asia and America.
Didn’t get to see it? Although NASA predict a super blue blood moon won’t be seen again in the USA until 2028, there’s always a whole sky-full of constellations to enjoy. From remote islands to national parks and deserts, here’s our pick of the world’s best stargazing spots.
1. Brecon Beacons, Wales
Wales’s first “Dark Sky Reserve” has effectively minimised light pollution with the involvement of local communities, creating conditions clear enough to view meteor showers, nebulas and, more rarely, the Northern Lights. City-dwellers from nearby Cardiff and Bristol can bring their binoculars to Hay Bluff or to the atmospheric ruins of medieval Llanthony Priory to experience truly starry nights.