Five Planets and the Moon Will Be Visible In the Sky This Weekend: How to See

Early this Sunday morning, stargazers will be able to see five planets and the crescent moon simultaneously with the unaided eye.

According to a blog post written by astronomy educator Jeffrey Hunt, Mercury, Venus, Mars, Jupiter and Saturn are set to be visible around 45 minutes before sunrise on July 19.

If you would like to see the spectacle, Hunt recommends going outside at least an hour before sunrise and finding a spot where the horizon is clear to the east-northeast and southwest.

Hunt said the four bright planets—Venus, Mars, Saturn and Jupiter—will be the easiest to spot, appearing like very bright stars.

"Brilliant Venus is low in the east-northeast. Mars is the lone 'star' in the southeast, and Jupiter and Saturn are the stars in the southwest. To your eyes, they won't look like the photos made by spacecraft, just overly bright stars," Hunt told CNET.

Venus will be located close to the star Aldebaran, while Mars, which won't be quite as bright, will appear around halfway up in the sky in the southeast, according to a post on Hunt's "When the Curves Line Up" website.

Jupiter will be visible low in the sky, just above the horizon in the southwest, appearing brighter than Mars.

Saturn meanwhile can be found around seven degrees to the upper left of Jupiter, and will look slightly dimmer than its neighbor.

"Don't confuse Saturn with the star Fomalhaut, farther south, but at about the same altitude as Saturn," Hunt wrote.

On Sunday, the moon will be a very thin crescent. Located very low in the east-northeast, it will only be one percent illuminated, so binoculars may prove helpful to locate it, even if our natural satellite is visible with the naked eye.

You will be able to find Mercury around five degrees to the right of the moon, although binoculars may also be helpful here as well.

Bryce Canyon National Park, night sky
The night sky above Bryce Canyon National Park in the American southwest. iStock

"Make a fist and stretch your arm. Five degrees is about the distance from your thumb knuckle to your pointer finger knuckle," Hunt said.

Being able to see all five planets is somewhat rare given Mercury's close orbit to the sun. Furthermore, the four bright planets are usually more spread out, Laura Danly, curator at Griffith Observatory, told Good Morning America.

"To get all four visible like that is a very beautiful sight," she said.

If you are new to stargazing, Hunt recommends astronomy apps such as Google Sky, or Night Star Walk to help locate the planets and the moon.