Thousands of Israelis gathered in the southern Negev desert Thursday evening to witness the spectacular annual meteor showers.
The Perseid meteor shower occurs when Earth passes through the debris of Comet Swift-Tuttle.
NASA has warned that there will likely not be other impressive meteor showers until 2024 because sky conditions will not be ideal for the phenomenon’s peaks in 2022 and 2023.
“With a full moon and low meteor activity during the Perseids peak in 2022, and a waning crescent in the sky for 2023, this might be your best chance to do some skywatching in the summer for a few years,” the US space agency She said.
NASA estimated that sky watchers in the Northern Hemisphere who were far from light pollution could see more than 40 persidians per hour.
The southern city of Mitzpe Ramon, perched on the edge of Ramon crater in the Negev desert and offering some of the best night sky views in the country, is a popular location for star-lovers of every kind, from professional astronomers to happy amateurs.
Others have found locations in the north of the country for the stars, far from towns and villages.
The Nature and Parks Authority announced, early Thursday evening, that all of its camping sites in the optimal viewing areas were full.
Much of Israel suffers from light pollution, as the small country has little real wilderness apart from civilization.
The Negev desert in the south of the country is mostly devoid of habitation, and Mitzpe Ramon, on the edge of the wilderness, has become a favorite of local stargazers.