Here’s when and how to spot Santa and his reindeer in the night sky this Christmas

Wednesday, 23rd December 2020, 12:21 pm
Updated Wednesday, 23rd December 2020, 12:21 pm

Soon Santa will be zipping through the night sky, on his way to deliver presents all around the world.

This Christmas, if you look closely enough, you might even be able to spot Old Saint Nick shining bright in the sky - but you’ll actually be looking at the International Space Station (ISS).

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In recent years, it’s become tradition to tell young children that the ISS is Santa Claus and his reindeer flying across the globe. Here’s how to track the ISS.

How do I spot Santa’s sleigh?

Anyone looking to track down Santa’s sleigh can get a little assistance from an ISS tracking app available on both the Apple and Android stores. They can also visit the ISS tracker website.

Families should be on the lookout for a bright, white, fast moving light in the sky. It will be brighter than your average star, and will be moving considerably faster than a typical airplane.

The station also won’t have any flashing lights.

When will I be able to see Santa from my house?

Anyone with little ones who rise up and early on Christmas Eve (24 Dec) will have two opportunities to catch a glimpse of Santa:

  • The first one will be at 4:42am. However, the station will be visible for less than a minute, so you will have to be very vigilant
  • The second chance will be a little easier at 6:15am. You will be able to spot the sleigh just above the horizon and will be available to view for three minutes

On Christmas Day, you and your family might be able to catch a glimpse of Sata returning back to the North Pole for his breakfast after a hard night's work.

There will be two opportunities again:

  • The first at 5:30am for one minute. Watchers should look 30 degrees above the horizon towards the South East
  • The second will be at 7:03am for six minutes. Watchers should look towards the West South West direction

It’s a perfect opportunity to get a say thank you and wave to Father Christmas.