Astronomical Events to Observe in the UAE Night Sky this July 2021

We may be busy with maintenance work at the Observatory beginning this July, but this does not mean we’ll also take a break from keeping you posted about what the night sky has in store for you. Expect more appearances from your favorite planets, and if you’re lucky (and persistent), you might be able to make the most out of a lesser-known meteor shower!

The night sky never runs out of things to see. If you need a telescope to help you spot objects much clearer than with the naked eye, we have Stellina ready for you! Al Sadeem Astronomy is the only distributor of this smart telescope here in the Middle East. You can place an order or inquiry here.

Here is a list of astronomical events to check out this July. All dates and times were given in UAE Local Time (UTC+4).


If you want to see planet Mercury with your naked eyes, July 5 is the perfect time to do just that. The Solar System’s smallest planet will be at its greatest elongation, shining brightly at magnitude +3.

It will be tricky to observe, though—as always. According to, we’ll have a small window to view Mercury from 4:15 A.M. until 5:20 A.M. on this day at the east-northeastern horizon. It will then peak at 15° above the horizon at sunrise.

We can still observe Mercury at best until July 7, reaching a peak altitude of 18° before fading to view at sunrise. But what exactly does it mean when a planet, like Mercury, is at its greatest elongation? In-The-Sky further enlightens on that.

Since Mercury is situated closest to the Sun, our star’s brightness drowns out the planet much of the time. Observers can only get a glimpse of Mercury when it’s farthest from the Sun—referred to as greatest elongation.

“These apparitions repeat roughly once every 3-4 months, taking place alternately in the morning and evening skies, depending on whether Mercury lies to the east of the Sun or to the west,” In-The-Sky explains.

When Mercury is in the east, it means that it’s visible in the early evening twilight. When it’s found in the west, it can be seen shortly before sunrise.

Graphic Illustration of Mercury at Greatest Western Elongation before sunrise on July 5, 2021 (Image Credit: Stellarium)


On July 12, the Waxing Crescent Moon and inner planets Venus and Mars will appear close to each other at the western horizon just right after sunset. The trio will become visible around 7:30 P.M., at 18°above your western horizon, until they completely set at around 9 P.M.

Graphic Illustration of the Moon-Venus-Mars Appulse on July 12, 2021 (Image Credit: Stellarium)

It is easy to call this cosmic rendezvous as a conjunction, but instead, we considered it an appulse. If you’re wondering why there’s a little difference between the two. We’ve posted a quick explanation about that on our Twitter page just recently. You can read the thread below:


Another appulse coming our way, but this time on July 24, it will be the Ringed Planet’s turn to dance with the Moon, which by this time will be at its Waning Gibbous phase. The Moon is passing about 4.5 degrees to the southeast of Saturn.

In Abu Dhabi, the pair will be visible in the early evening sky at approximately 8:05 P.M. and will reach their highest point in the sky at 1:10 A.M. of the following day, about 47° above your southern horizon. The pair will set at 5:29 of July 25, at 13° above your southwestern horizon.

Graphic Illustration of the Moon-Jupiter Appulse on July 24, 2021 (Image Credit: Stellarium)


From Saturn, the Waning Gibbous Moon closes in on Jupiter on July 26, about 7° to the right of the Gas Giant, and will both be visible the entire night beginning at 8:50 P.M. until 5:33 A.M. of the following day. The best time to see it will be shortly after midnight, at 2:20 A.M. when the pair is at its highest point in the sky, at 52° above your southern horizon.

Graphic Illustration of the Moon-Jupiter Appulse on July 26, 2021 (Image Credit: Stellarium)


There’s a lesser-known meteor shower that is gracing the night skies this July—the Southern Delta Aquariid Meteor Shower. But the Waning Gibbous Moon at 59 percent illumination might spoil the fun.

Averaging at 19 meteors per hour, the Southern Aquariids will peak on July 29 with its best showers—on a clear, dark night—happening at 9 in the evening. Patience will be the key to make the most of the meteor shower, as the Moon’s presence will make the stargazing a challenge.

As per experts, the Southern Aquariids are born out of the debris from the Comet 96P/Machholz, and as its name implies the meteors will seem to radiate from the direction of the constellation Aquarius.

Location of the Southern Delta-Aquariid Meteor Shower Radiant in constellation Aquarius (Image Credit: Stellarium)


So you want to catch the Milky Way here in Abu Dhabi? Here’s a quick tip: the areas south of Abu Dhabi are some of the amazing spots in the UAE for stargazing! Try Al Quaa, Hameem, Al Khatim, Liwa—these places are much farther out from city lights and relatively dark.

In July, you’ll be able to see the Milky Way as early as eight in the evening when it rises, until four in the morning. But the best time to see it will be at midnight, on a clear, dark, and moonless night.


July 1               05:37 ↑          19:15 ↓

July 31             05:50 ↑          19:06 ↓

Sunset in Al Sadeem Observatory (Credit: Thabet Al Qaissieh)


July 2 – Last Quarter

July 10 – New Moon

July 17 – First Quarter

July 24 – Full Moon

July 31 – Last Quarter


Astronomy Calendar of Celestial Events 2021. (n.d.). Retrieved from Sea and Sky:

Calendar of Astronomical Events. (n.d.). Retrieved from #datesel

Sunrise and sunset times in Abu Dhabi, July 2021. (n.d.). Retrieved from