Tonight’s the night to catch a falling star and put it in your pocket! Californians are in for a dazzling display as August’s annual Perseid meteor shower will peak tonight and tomorrow, giving stargazers a one-of-a-kind light show with up to 100 shooting stars illuminating the sky every hour.  And, according to NASA, this is the first time since 2007 that the Perseid overlaps with a new moon, meaning this year’s meteor shower will be accompanied by pitch black skies making for excellent stargazing conditions.

So lie on a beach, climb a peak or head out to the countryside and enjoy nature’s celestial show. The best viewing times are from 3 am to dawn, so if you’re really committed, set an alarm and grab some coffee. Not sure what to expect? We’ve rounded up some of the best starry night shots of California for your pre-Perseids viewing pleasure.

Lake Tahoe

Photo via flickr user melfoody

Mono Lake

Photo by W. Tipton via flickr

Mt. Tamalpais, Marin County

Photo by Ashley Jordan Gordon via flickr


Mobius Arch, Alabama Hills Recreational Area

Photo by Kartik Ramanathan via flickr

Red Rock Canyon State Park, Cantil

Photo by Ian Norman via flickr

Still not sure whether to head outside or hit the snooze button? You can also watch from the comfort of your own bed—NASA will be livestreaming the shower from 7pm through 11pm at this link.