Which galaxies can I see in the night sky without a telescope?

Viewing Non-Stellarnight Sky Objects Read more from
Chapter Earth and the Moon

With the unaided eye, the disk of our own Milky Way galaxy can be seen as a fuzzy band of light stretching across the sky. Beyond the Milky Way, two dwarf galaxies are visible in the southern hemisphere: The Large and Small Magellanic Clouds are about 200,000 light-years away from Earth, and appear as fuzzy blobs about the size of small cookies held at arm’s length. In the northern hemisphere, the Andromeda Galaxy is 2.2 million light-years away from Earth, and is only barely visible as a tiny, fuzzy patch of light with the unaided eye—but is clearly visible using binoculars or a small telescope.


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