Manhattanhenge 2018: Where and When to Watch the Sunset

Now that Memorial Day Weekend is behind us, it's time to look forward to something new. There's a lot to get excited about during the summer months, but for New Yorkers there's one event that stands out above the rest. I'm talking about Manhattanhenge, of course. If you're new to the New York City area, you might be asking yourself 'WTF is a Manhattanhenge?' Well, it's an event in which the setting sun or rising sun aligns with the east-west street of the main street grid of Manhattan. This amazing phenomenon only happens twice a year near the summer and winter solstice, so, you want to make sure you don't miss the next one. 

Manhattanhenge is getting closer and New Yorkers will be able to see the sunset alignment from the summer solstice on four days this summer. Half of the sun will align with the Manhattan streets on May 29, 2018, 8:13 p.m. and July 13, 2018, 8:21 p.m. To view the full sunset align with Manhattan, you'll have to look out for Manhattanhenge on May 30, 8:12 p.m. and July 12, 2018, 8:20pm. Try to arrive about a half-hour early to grab a spot and watch as the sun makes it descent so you don't miss it and so you secure a good spot.

When it comes to Manhattanhenge, not all city streets were created equal. Your best bet for viewing Manhattanhenge is at any true cross streets where there is nothing blocking your view at the end of the road. According to the American Museum of Natural History, Manhattanhenge viewers will want to be on street where you can see New Jersey if you're looking west. Some of the best streets include 14th, 23rd, 34th and 42nd. Further uptown, 57th Street is also a good spot. 

While this particular sunset is particularly beautiful and exciting, still make sure you're not staring directly at the sun for too long. It's never a good idea to do that so always be aware of the damage you can do to your eyes. Enjoy Manhattanhenge and good luck grabbing that perfect Instagram photo!

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