What are the nearest galaxies I can observe using my Telescope? Does it require to be out of the city lights?

  • $\begingroup$ Are you restricted to the northern or southern hemisphere? Would a dwarf galaxy orbiting the Milky Way count? $\endgroup$
    – LocalFluff
    Dec 1, 2014 at 13:29
  • $\begingroup$ Andromeda Galaxy Is the nearest large galaxy. I've observed it with a 6" reflector in an orange/5 bortle zone pretty easily. $\endgroup$
    – asawyer
    Dec 1, 2014 at 13:41
  • $\begingroup$ @asawyer: Was 6" enough to directly see it? Just asking cuz it's so super-faint with the naked eye $\endgroup$ Dec 1, 2014 at 15:50
  • $\begingroup$ @AtmosphericPrisonEscape The core was pretty easily seen (and it's easy to see why it was called a nebula originally) as a faint gray cloud with a bright core. The arms and outer clouds where not visible, m32 and m110 where not visible at that time. Pretty sure that was all due to local light pollution. $\endgroup$
    – asawyer
    Dec 1, 2014 at 15:55
  • $\begingroup$ @asawyer: Thanx for the info. It's just weird cuz we were high up in the Alps under good conditions and we could barely see the nebula character. $\endgroup$ Dec 1, 2014 at 16:44

2 Answers 2


The nearest one is the one you are on: Milky Way. It can be seen from any place, as it is all around us.

If you want to actually look at a whole galaxy in a simple view, then the nearest galaxies easy to be observed are the Small and Large Magellan Clouds, and the Galaxy of Andromeda.

There are galaxies nearer that those, but harder to be observed. A quite complete list is at https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_nearest_galaxies


The obvious answer is our own, the Mikyway. The only problem is, Where you are in the world? We all will see it differently, many factors play into this, your elevation,city lights,e.t.c One of the biggest problems is light, it has plagued astronomers for years. Depending on how good your telescope is, the next closest galaxy to us is the Andromada galaxy with a good telescope you will be able to see it. You may also be able to view the sm. And lg. Magellan clouds with a larger telescope, remember the better equipment you have,the more you will be able to see. More farther,clearer and be able enjoy more than just galaxies.

  • $\begingroup$ For more information on Galaxies and other celestial bodies check out http//www.Hubble.org $\endgroup$ Dec 8, 2014 at 12:27

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