In this question an image is shown (repeated below) which gives an idea of the "true" angular extent of the Andromeda galaxy in our sky.
When I see Andromeda it is usually a bit of a smudge perhaps the size of the full moon, presumably because I cannot see much beyond the bright nucleus and bulge of the galaxy.
Being a stellar astronomer, I have never thought much about the practicalities of seeing extended objects in the night sky.
My question is: what kind of observing conditions would allow me to see Andromeda with an angular size of $\sim 5$ degrees? Would it be sufficient to get to a really dark site with the naked eye, or would I also need to be looking for it with binoculars or a telescope? Or is it something where you must take a picture and do some processing to eliminate the general sky background?
EDIT: To be clear, I don't want my question reading back to me - as in "you can only see a smudge with the naked eye"; what I want to know is the observational conditions/instrument I need to able to see a several degree diameter Andromeda galaxy; preferably with the evidence?