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The Milky Way is the name of the galaxy in which we live, and when captured in a photo, it produces some of the most awe-inspiring, other-worldly images you will ever see.

If you’ve heard how beautiful these images can be, but spend the majority of your days living in a city, then you might be wondering what all the fuss is about. That’s what this post is designed to share with you.

How to photograph the milky way This article is a small part of our comprehensive guide: How to Photograph The Milky Way

Before we show you some of these images, you may be wondering…

How big is the Milky Way?

Well, let’s look at it this way — the Milky Way is the galaxy which holds our solar system. Our solar system itself is 22.7 billion miles wide, and that’s just the distance covered by the objects around one single star.

Now, there are an estimated 100-400 billion stars in the Milky Way. Although we could do the maths on the size of the galaxy, we’re already at the billions of miles mark when we talk about our solar system, so doing that calculation becomes a little pointless.

We’re multiplying billions of miles by billions of stars here, so you get the (enormous) picture.

Long story short, the Milky Way is far, far larger than anything we can comprehend.

How do we know what the Milky Way looks like if we’re in it?

Despite the Milky Way being far larger than we can comprehend, it still is just one galaxy.

So sure, we can look up and occasionally see planets in our solar system, but what we see the most is a mass of stars, all of which are in the galaxy that surrounds us.

Someone living in another galaxy might see something different to us, but it’s unlikely we’ll ever know…

What does the Milky Way look like?

If learning about the sheer size of the galaxy wasn’t awe-inspiring enough, wait until you see what we have below.

Here are 24 photos of the Milky Way for your viewing pleasure. At at the end of the article, you’ll find a wallpaper pack download that includes the full-resolution version of each of these images, so that you can use them as wallpaper for your desktop. Enjoy!

photo of the milky way with rock formations in foreground

photo of the milky way with silhouette of buddha in foreground

photo of the milky way with camper van in foreground

photo of the milky way with dusty road and plant silhouettes

photo of the milky way with canyon and faint distant glow

photo of the milky way with lake in foreground

photo of the milky way with old schoolhouse in foreground

photo of the milky way overlooking city

photo of the milky way arcing across the sky

photo of the milky way with weathered fence in foreground

photo of the milky way with cactus silhouettes

photo of the milky way with rock formation silhouettes

photo of the milky way above lake

photo of the milky way with grass and flower silhouettes

photo of the milky way with campsite in foreground

photo of the milky way with light trails in foreground

photo of the milky way with tree silhouette in foreground and city in distance

deep indigo and blue landscape photo of with milky way in background

light photo of the milky way with grassy hills in foreground

photo of the milky way above glowing campsite

photo of the milky way with glowing horizon and hills

dark sky photo of the milky way

photo of the milky way with dimly lit rock formations

photo of the milky way with radio tower

Download Free Wallpapers

24 Hi-Res Milky Way Photos

These stunning photos of the Milky Way make for great desktop wallpapers, but the image quality is limited by the size of the blog post. Click on the link below and we'll send you the full-resolution images for you to enjoy.

A note from Josh, ExpertPhotography's Photographer-In-Chief:

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Josh

Hey I'm Josh, I'm Photographer in Chief here at ExpertPhotography, and I'm in charge of making sure that we provide you with the best content from the most knowledgeable photographers in the world. Enjoy the site :)

Continue discussion on this post: How to Photograph The Milky Way: A Complete Guide