Perseids: where and when to see the meteor shower in Huelva

Perseids: where and when to see the meteor shower in Huelva

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Meteor showers are not a unique and special event that takes place every so often, but rather they occur several times a year every year. However, it is the summer ones that usually take center stage and, especially in August, the most important are the perseids.

Like every summer, the shooting stars will be best seen on the nights between nights from August 12 to 13, which this year 2022 will be Friday and Saturday. This meteor shower, which is also popularly known as tears of San Lorenzo (given its proximity to the tenth of August, in which the festivity of this saint is celebrated), it is actually visible throughout the summer in the northern hemisphere. According to the National Geographic Institute, they can be seen in the night sky from the July 17th and will finish approx. August 24. So even if you can’t see each other during your busiest days, always there will be other opportunities until the end of the month.

The moon, the main impediment

If this year’s Aquarid deltas could be seen more easily because their time of greatest rhythm coincided with the new moon, the opposite will happen for the Perseids. According to the IGN, the full moon August will take place on Friday 12, coinciding with the night in which the Perseids will have more activity. This will complicate your visibility, given the reflected light by the satellite during its full moon. Therefore, to increase the chances of spotting a shooting star, the ideal is to look at the darkest parts of the sky and in opposite direction of the moon.

Comet 109P/Swift-Tuttle and Perseus

If this rain of stars is known as tears of San Lorenzo due to the proximity of its climax to the saint’s festivity, the name of perseids it is given because seems to proceed of the perseus constellation. However, this meteor shower occurs because the Earth crosses the comet’s orbit in early August. 109/Swift-Tuttle and the small particles of the tail of this come into contact with the atmosphere at high speed and suffer friction until they vaporize, causing the glow which makes us call them shooting stars.

The best places in Huelva to see the stars:

The beaches of Huelva Every summer they are the busiest points in the province of Huelva. The concentration of vacationers on the coast and the convenience of getting away from the urban center to lie down on the sand and contemplate the sky amidst the sound of the waves makes this the majority option for following calls Tears of San Lorenzo.

A chair, a towel, blankets or coats should not be missing from the equipment of a good stargazer, in case the night cools down, some snacks and a great desire to surrender to heaven. Better if it is with company, for that count of fallen stars that has become a summer pastime for families, in which the little ones enjoy their innocence.

Though there are many points in the Andévalo and in the Sierra that are revealed, far from the slightest light pollution, perfect candidates for the observation of any celestial body. The natural environment also accompanies the country night silence, without the murmur of beach waves but with unparalleled attractions that make the province of Huelva an infinite field of observation.

Santa Ana la Real

There is a circular path of approximately 2.5 km in length specially themed that aims to introduce the visitor to the knowledge of astronomy and give the basic notions to get started in astronomy. observation of the night sky. Along the route we will find three interpretive panels with explanatory texts and images on concepts of the universe; accompanied by QR codes that allow you to download additional information in the form of an audio guide. At the highest point there is a granite table with the cardinal points marked for observation with a telescope.

Astronomical Table in the Sierra de Santa Bárbara (Higuera de la Sierra)

We can find an astronomical observation point where we can study the main constellations with the help of an explanatory table of the celestial vault. To facilitate the work, the infrastructure is complemented with reclining benches. From this point the horizon to the south is so wide that it allows us to see the city of Seville.

Linares de la Sierra astronomical viewpoint

Nestled in a deep valley facing south, it has set up a viewpoint in the highest part of the town for stargazing. The viewpoint, with excellent views of the terrestrial ecliptic or the path of the zodiac, is a paved platform or balcony surrounded by a fence, ideal for small group activities of up to 20 people.

Hermitage of San Bartolomé (Alájar)

In this place there is a platform for astronomical observation prepared for three simultaneous telescopes with the possibility of access to electricity. The observation point has privileged views of the entire celestial vault, a sky free of light pollution and easy access for vehicles.

Sultana Mines (Cala)

Just 2 km from Cala, next to the Las Tres Encinas Recreational Area, we find the Hermitage of San Roque and the nearby ruins of the Mina de la Sultana. The recreational area is equipped with parking, tables, benches and other equipment for leisure. This environment was a reference for the study of Sierra Morena’s candidacy as a Starlight Reserve, since it is one of the darkest places in the north of the province.

Almonte Observatory

It is managed by the Juan Pérez Mercader Association. It is the only one in the province and has a deep sky astrophotography telescope. The objective of this facility and that of the association is scientific dissemination of astronomy by organizing activities throughout the year. It is located in the International Center for Ecological and Environmental Studies (CIECEMA) and can be visited after consulting the association.

Astronomy Interpretation Center (Villanueva de los Castillejos)

As part of the Bajo Guadiana Sustainable Tourism Project, in the middle of La Dehesilla we find the astronomical interpretation center of Villanueva de los Castillejos.

It introduces the visitor to fundamental aspects of astronomy, raises awareness about light pollution and gives notions of astrophotography. The surroundings of the center, being in the middle of nature and located on a hill, are ideal for the use of telescopes.

Dolmen of Soto

It is one of the largest and best preserved funerary megalithic structures in Huelva. In this type of sepulchre, the door always faces east, towards the rising sun, and the burial chamber to the west, towards sunset.

Twice a year, during the spring and autumn equinoxes, the first rays of the sun travel down the corridor and are reflected inside the chamber, turning into a beautiful solar calendar. This show is a tourist attraction.

Visits are by reservation.

Dolmens of El Pozuelo (Zalamea la Real)

The El Pozuelo dolmen complex is the largest in the province and is located in the municipality of Zalamea la Real. The entrance to the complex is established on the N-435 road, and specifically at the detour to the village of El Pozuelo (Hu-5103 regional road).

This area has a total of 49 dolmens divided into two sectors: El Villar and El Pozuelo. Next to the village of El Pozuelo we find eleven tombs declared an Asset of Cultural Interest that are part of a themed circular route of low difficulty and about 12 kilometers of length.

It is an ideal place for observing the night sky.

Hill of San Cristobal (Almonaster la Real)

As one of the highest peaks in the province, during the period of Arab splendor in the region, the hill of San Cristóbal became the watchtower of Almonaster la Real. At its top we will find two ideal points for astronomical observation, a viewpoint to the south and another to the north. During the day it has magnificent panoramic views from which to see the municipality’s mosque and dozens of km around it.

Hermitage of the Virgen de la Peña (Puebla de Guzmán)

The Hermitage of the Virgen de la Peña is located on the Cerro del Águila. This place is the highest vantage point from which to enjoy the best panoramic views of the area. At its top, next to the Hermitage, there is a large esplanade ideal for accessing by car and observing the sky with very good quality skies and great horizons.

Castle of San Marcos (Sanlucar de Guadiana)

A privileged place from which to see deep landscapes of Huelva and Portugal, which gives it a special charm. Around the fortified enclosure all the cardinal points are dominated from where to enjoy the dark sky of the area.

Rock of Arias Montano

One of the most important enclaves of the Sierra de Aracena and Picos de Aroche. These panoramic views allow the observation of a good part of the south of the celestial vault.

Asperillo Cliff (Doñana)

In the Doñana Natural Park, between Mazagón and Matalascañas, is the natural monument of the Asperillo Cliff.

With around 28 km of virgin beach, it is one of the few cliffs formed by fossil sand deposits and the highest in Europe with these characteristics. It is one of the few coastal places from which to enjoy the quality night sky.

Rio Tinto Protected Landscape. ‘Martian landscape’

A protected and unique landscape in the world. Sign of identity of the entire province of Huelva, the Tinto River forms a Martian landscape on earth. Colors and landscapes so extraterrestrial that even NASA decided to explore it for its similarities with the planet Mars. The high iron content adds a red color to the water and an orange color to the shores.

For each section of the river there is a better location. One of the most beautiful sections of the route, among others, is the crossing of the Tinto River with the HU-5104 road.

Past Abad Cromlech (Rosal de la Frontera)

A megalithic structure formed by six large orthostats arranged in a circular shape. Recent research suggests that it must have been a solar calendar in the form of a cromlech. As a witness to its link to astronomy, one of the large stones in the complex has the seven main stars of the Ursa Major constellation carved into it.

The viewpoint of the Sierra de El Viso (Santa Olalla del Cala)

Santa Olalla del Cala have the privilege of having the Starlight certificate, which guarantees the cleanliness of the skies without light pollution,

guaranteeing the ability to enjoy the light of the stars and the development of activities based on this resource. The Starlight Certification brings science and tourism together for the first time and is supported by the World Tourism Organization and the International Astronomical Union.

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