Blog Post

Headlinesn > Lifestyle > Manhattanhenge 2024: What is it and how can you watch?
gettyimages 1258301685

Manhattanhenge 2024: What is it and how can you watch?

Twice a year there is a sunset that perfectly aligns with New York City’s grid street system, called Manhattanhenge.

The term “Manhattanhenge” was coined back in 1997 by astrophysicist Neil deGrasse Tyson in an article in the magazine Natural History. He had visited the Stonehenge structure in England as a teenager and later determined that the way the sun hits the structure during the summer solstice could be replicated in Manhattan a few weeks prior to the solstice.

“I visited Stonehenge as a kid at age 15 on an expedition… and that stuck with me, which is why I named this phenomenon in Manhattan, where the sun sets along the street grid… I named that Manhattanhenge, sort of harkening back to my early days thinking about the alignment of the sun and structures that we might build,” Tyson had said at the time.

Manhattanhenge, also known as the Manhattan Solstice, is known for bringing in an influx of tourists and photographers who are trying to caption the photogenic sunset.

According to AccuWeather the best days to see Manhattanhenge in 2024 will be at sunset on Wednesday 29 May, at around 8,12pm and Friday 12 July, at around 8.20pm.

A “half-sun” is also available and visible for viewing on Tuesday 28 May at 8.13pm and Saturday 13 July at 8.21pm, according to the American Museum of Natural History.

Similar to an eclipse, there is the possibility of clouds covering up the sunset, making it more difficult to see and people should avoid looking at the sun directly to avoid eye damage.

For the best views of the sunset certain streets will allow the sunset to be more visible including 14th Street, 23rd Street, 34th Street, 42nd Street and 57th Street. Although it’s important to be mindful that 34th and 42nd Street could be a bit more busy with people trying to catch glimpses of the Empire State and Chrysler buildings.

Elevated parks like the Chelsea High Line are also prime vantage points for the sunset.

It is also possible to see Manhattanhenge across the East River in the Long Island City section of Queens.

Dr Jackie Faherty recommended in The New York Times that everyone who is planning to view the sunset find a wide road in the city.

“You have to be in the middle of the street to fully appreciate it,” the astronomer, who works with Tyson, told the Times. “It’s like a huge science party that will occur in the city.”

But New York City’s borough of Manhattan isn’t the only city in the United States that have their own version of a “henge.” The event can happen in any city where the orientation of the streets aligns with the sun.

Chicago has their own Chicagohenge, that usually occurs around the spring and autumn equinoxes (March and September).

San Francisco also has its own rendition of the event, named California Henge, where sun aligns with the city streets and the San Francisco-Oakland Bay Bridge.

#Manhattanhenge #watch

Leave a comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *