Four Full Supermoons Are Coming Up in 2024! Here's When to See Them

full super moon rising over ocean near myrtle beach south carolina
It's Much Ado About Supermoons! Get 2024 DatesTeresa Kopec - Getty Images

In August, September, October, and November 2024, a series of big, beautiful, full supermoons will brighten the night sky. If it suddenly seems like every other headline is about a supermoon, you aren’t imagining it. These moons are media darlings. But what is a supermoon and what makes it special—or is this event the astronomical equivalent of a nothingburger?

While more common and not as showy as the name suggests, supermoons can teach us about the laws of perspective, the Earth’s tides, our solar system, and more. Read on to learn all about supermoons, find out which ones are truly rare, and get the dates for the next one in 2024.

What is a supermoon?

A supermoon is a full or new moon that is at or near its perigee, which is the closest distance to Earth along its orbit.

Because our moon’s orbit is not a perfect circle but rather oval shaped, the distance from Earth varies on average from 363,300 km (the perigee) to 405,500 km (the farthest distance, called the apogee), according to NASA. Keep in mind that the perigee and apogee can change from orbit to orbit, and they can exceed these average values.

A full supermoon appears a little brighter and a little larger than usual due to its closer proximity. The diameter of a supermoon can appear about 8% greater than your average full moon, says NASA. Compare it to a full moon at apogee (also called a micromoon), and a supermoon’s diameter can appear just shy of 14% percent larger.

Even so, experts say moon-gazers likely cannot perceive this difference. Proximity to the horizon, trees, or buildings is more likely to influence how large or small the full moon looks (that’s the moon illusion at work). A supermoon’s larger apparent size is easier to see in a side-by-side comparison of to-scale photography. Below, the supermoon is on the right.

comparison of full moon size at apogee on october 31, 2020 and perigee, aka a supermoon, on april 26, 2021
Alan Dyer/Stocktrek Images - Getty Images

Though the term is bandied about regularly today, the word supermoon has only been in the pop culture vernacular since astrologer Richard Nolle coined it in 1979 in an article that defined it as “a new or full moon which occurs with the Moon at or near (within 90% of) its closest approach to Earth in a given orbit.”

All that is to say, not all supermoons are the same. Each event’s relatively close distance to Earth can vary by more than 10,000 km. For example, the full supermoon in November 2025 will swing by at less than 357,000 km from Earth, while January 2029’s full supermoon, at more than 367,000 km away, will just make it inside the 90%-to-perigee threshold, according astronomer Fred Espenak’s site,

full super moon rising over ocean near myrtle beach south carolina
Myrtle Beach, South CarolinaTeresa Kopec - Getty Images

What happens during a supermoon?

Short answer: spring tides turned up a notch, lots and lots of hype, and on very rare occasions, a total solar eclipse. Here’s why.

Slightly More Extreme Tides

Any time the sun, moon, and Earth line up—which occurs every new and full moon, or twice in a lunar cycle—high tides are higher and low tides are lower due to the alignment of gravitational forces (these are called spring tides, regardless of the season). Tidal ranges are also above average whenever the moon is at perigee, regardless of the moon phase, according to the National Ocean Service, part of the NOAA.

During a supermoon, the factors that drive a perigean tide and a spring tide are at play at the same time. Still, this concurrence only amounts to a 5 cm (or 2 inch) greater variation in spring tides, according

supermoon rising over mohegan bluffs, rhode island
Mohegan Bluffs, Rhode IslandHuntstock, Inc - Getty Images

The Supermoon Hype Machine

When you see headlines about three (or four) upcoming full supermoons in a row—that’s all well and good, but know that it happens every year.

Very funny, Neil deGrasse Tyson. Astrophysicist Neil deGrasse Tyson enjoys taking the air out of supermoon hype. On the night of a supermoon on July 13, 2022, he tweeted on X: “Tonight’s Full Moon, the largest of the year, is 8% larger than an average Full Moon. Will be called by some a ‘Super Duper Moon.’ I’m okay with that, but only if you think a 16-inch pizza is super-duper-sized compared with a 15-inch pizza.”

On Occasion, a Total Solar Eclipse

Like all new moons, a new supermoon is invisible from Earth except during a solar eclipse. And when a new supermoon coincides with the perfect alignment needed for a solar eclipse, the moon’s apparent size will be large enough to block the sun completely, resulting in a total solar eclipse, like the one in April 2024.

That’s not to say the new moon must be a supermoon to yield a total solar eclipse—the 90%-to-perigee rule does not perfectly fit here. During the total solar eclipse of August 2017, the new moon did not have supermoon status, but it was close enough. (It fell just three days after the exact perigee and followed a series of new supermoons from March through July.)

eclipse 2024 meadville pennsylvania with solar flares
Meadville, Pennsylvania: the new supermoon and total solar eclipse on April 8, 2024Tiffani Photography - Getty Images

On the flip side, a new moon that is perfectly aligned for a solar eclipse but too far away to block the sun completely will result in an annular, or “ring of fire,” eclipse, like the one in October 2023. This is always the case for solar eclipses that occur when the new moon is at or near apogee (its farthest distance from Earth)—unless, of course, it it falls in the partial eclipse category.

When is the next supermoon?

Find out if there is a supermoon tonight by referencing the calendar below. All 2024 new supermoons have already occurred, falling in January, February, March, April, and May (five in a row!), but the 2024 full supermoon season gears up in late summer.

Full Supermoons 2024

  • August 19, 2024, 2:26 p.m. ET, 361,970km from Earth

  • September 17, 2024, 10:34 p.m. ET, 357,486km from Earth

  • October 17, 2024, 7:26 a.m. ET, 357,364km from Earth (closest of the year)

  • November 15, 2024, 4:28 p.m. ET, 361,867km from Earth

Full Moon Perigee (Full Supermoon) Table Courtesy of Fred Espenak,

New Supermoons 2025

  • February 27, 2025, 7:45 p.m. ET, 364,692 km from Earth

  • March 29, 2025, 6:58 a.m. ET, 358,693 km from Earth

  • April 27, 2025, 3:31 p.m. ET, 357,141 km from Earth (closest of the year)

  • May 26, 2025, 11:02 p.m. ET, 360,044 km from Earth

  • June 25, 2025, 6:31 a.m. ET, 366,786 km from Earth

New Moon Perigee (New Supermoon) Table Courtesy of Fred Espenak,

How rare is it to see a supermoon?

Supermoons are not rare. We see three to four full supermoons a year, though as few as two and as many as five are possible within a calendar year. The same is true for new supermoons, though they are invisible to our eye. Supermoons also always occur in a series, and within any given series, they are always the same type (that is, either all new or all full supermoons in a row).

Some supermoon events, however, do qualify as rare. Extreme (or ultimate) perigee supermoons, blue supermoons, super blue blood moons (the trifecta!), and new supermoons during a solar eclipse are a few of the qualifying events worth making a fuss over.

sturgeon supermoon breaks through clouds above statue of liberty, liberty state park, new jersey, august 2023
Liberty State Park, New JerseyDiana Robinson Photography - Getty Images

“Extreme Perigee” Supermoon

If a supermoon falls near an “extreme perigee,” that is rare, says NASA. The full supermoon on November 2016, for example, passed by a mere 356,523 km from Earth. Only five full supermoons in the 21st century will come closer. Four of those will fall within 356,500 km of our planet, which puts in the category of “ultimate full moon perigees.” Those ultimate full supermoons will fall on November 2034, December 2052, December 2070, and January 2098.

Blue Supermoon

When two full moons fall in one month, as it happens every so often, the second one is called a blue moon. When that blue moon falls within 90% of the perigee, then it is a blue supermoon, which is relatively rare and definitely not blue. The last blue supermoon occurred in August 2023, and the next will happen in January 2037.

Add a lunar eclipse (also called a blood moon) to the equation and you get the even more rare super blue blood moon, like the one on January 2018.

fisherman on venice pier photographing supermoon blue blood moon with partial lunar eclipse, venice, florida
Venice, FloridaDiana Robinson Photography - Getty Images

New Supermoon + Total Solar Eclipse

A total solar eclipse, complete with seeing the sun’s glorious corona, is generally considered a once-in-a-lifetime event—unless you are an eclipse chaser who travels to the end of the Earth to be in path of totality whenever one occurs. These events have a good chance of being coupled with a new supermoon because the moon must appear large enough to block all direct sunlight (regular new moons can be close enough make to the cut too).

If you were in the path of totality during the Great American Eclipse on April 8, 2024, that was a new supermoon you admired. The next total solar eclipse to cross over any part the contiguous United States won’t occur until August 23, 2044, and that will be a new supermoon too!

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