Mars is the third planet in our solar system and named after the Roman God of War. On April 14, 2014 , Mars the red planet would be close to the Earth at about 92 million kilometres. It would be visible through an ordinary amateur telescope and even the Martian surface and its polar ice-caps can be viewed without much effort.
As the planets go round the Sun there comes a time when the Sun, the Earth and a planet comes nearly on a straight line. This is called opposition of that planet, the Sun and the planet are in the exactly opposite direction. The closest approach between Earth and Mars that is when Mars is in opposition to Sun occurs every 26 months.
Sky watchers can also observe Mars on April 8 when the planet is directly opposite the Sun with Earth in between. The red planet can be best viewed after midnight, when it reaches the highest elevation. Again on April 14, Mars will be closest to Earth. We can see Mars rising in the east when the sun is setting in the west.
During this period, the planet will be closest to the Earth and one can observe its surface, features, especially the polar ice caps. The next Mars opposition will happen after a gap of two years, in 2016 and 2018, when Mars will be even closer to the Earth.