The Moon and Venus Will Come Together in the Night Sky Tonight. Here's How to See It.

Venus and the moon are going to get very close together and it'll be easy to see from almost anywhere.

moon venus conjunction 2020
Venus, the moon, and Jupiter align in January of 2019. | Gary Hershorn/Getty Images
Venus, the moon, and Jupiter align in January of 2019. | Gary Hershorn/Getty Images

Like a Fourth of July fireworks display, 2020 has saved the best (stargazing displays) for last. There are knockout sights coming this month, but the first major stargazing event of December involves a close encounter between Earth's sister planet and the moon. 

Venus will make a close pass by the moon—at least, from our perspective—on the mornings of December 12 and 13. The two will be having a conjunction at about 3:40 pm ET on December 12, per In the Sky, a time when the sun is still up and the planet isn't visible from the US. 

You will be able to catch the two orbs coming close together low in the sky on the morning of December 12. Since the conjunction is taking place during the day, you'll also be able to see them fairly close together on the morning of December 13. Though, neither morning will have the pair close enough to be seen together through the lens of a telescope. 

You'll want to check for them in the early morning hours because that's the only time that Venus is currently visible. Venus rises at 5:09 am on December 12. That's just about two hours before the sun comes up, and less than half an hour after the moon rises. (A situation that will make for great viewing of the Geminid meteor shower later in the week.) The duo will be visible in the low east-southeast sky as they rise. So, be sure you've got a nice clear view along the horizon in that direction.

While you're out looking for the brightest planet in the night sky, keep an eye out for meteors streaking through the dark. The Geminid meteor shower will peak during the early morning hours of December 14. It's the most active meteor shower of the year, and you might catch a few meteors out and about while you're looking for Venus.

Ready to go stargazing?

Here are all the best stargazing events that you can get out and see this month or you could stay in a stream the northern lights from home. If you're just getting started, check out our guide to astronomy for beginners or easy stargazing road trips from big US cities

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Dustin Nelson is a Senior Staff Writer at Thrillist. Follow Dustin Nelson on Twitter.