Last updated at 14:48

Guide: How to watch the Perseid Meteor shower

Time exposure photograph of polar stars during a meteor shower.Science Photo Library
Time exposure photograph of polar stars during a meteor shower

Stargazers are getting ready to enjoy the spectacular Perseid meteor shower.

Up to 100 shooting meteors an hour will streak across the sky in the beautiful natural firework show, visible around the world.

Those hoping to catch a glimpse of the shower shouldn't be disappointed this year.

Astronomers say they're expecting extra-dark skies which will create perfect stargazing conditions.

The PerseidsPA
Up to 100 shooting meteors per hour will streak across the sky
What causes the Perseid meteor shower?

The Perseids are actually tiny pieces of the Swift-Tuttle comet that can be seen every year when the Earth passes through a cloud of the comet's debris.

They're bits of ice and dust, which can be as small as a grain of sand or as big as a pea.

The fragments were left behind whenever Swift-Tuttle passed close to Earth - the last time was in 1992.

The meteors appear to come from a point in the constellation of Perseus, hence the name Perseid.

They hit the Earth's atmosphere at a whopping speed of 134,000 mph, but don't pose any danger to us on Earth.

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BBC Weather reporter, Simon King, tells us where and when to see the shower
When and how can I see it?

The celestial show is expected to hit its peak overnight on Wednesday but you can see it any night this week.

Unlike some other cosmic events, spectators don't need special technology to watch the Perseids unfold.

It's best to find a wide open space away from tall buildings or trees, and with as little light as possible. The more of the sky you can see, the better.

This year the Moon's glow will not interfere with meteor-watching, as it will be approaching its darkest or "new" phase, experts say.

Perseid meteor shower
It's best to find a wide open space away from tall buildings, trees and artificial light