How many stars can I see? (Beginner)

How many stars can I see in the night sky using my unaided eyesight?

You can see a few thousand stars in the sky with your unaided eye on a dark clear night away from light pollution. If you want to estimate how many stars you can see on a given night (which varies from place to place and person to person because of things like atmospheric transmission, sources of light on the ground and how sensitive your eyes are) you can try the following experiment.


This page was last updated July 18, 2015. 

About the Author

Karen Masters

Karen Masters

Karen was a graduate student at Cornell from 2000-2005. She went on to work as a researcher in galaxy redshift surveys at Harvard University, and is now on the Faculty at the University of Portsmouth back in her home country of the UK. Her research lately has focused on using the morphology of galaxies to give clues to their formation and evolution. She is the Project Scientist for the Galaxy Zoo project.

Twitter:  @KarenLMasters

Most Popular

Our Reddit AMAs

AMA = Ask Me (Us) Anything