Manhattanhenge, a captivating spectacle that occurs in the heart of New York City, is a natural phenomenon that attracts locals and tourists alike. Twice a year, the setting sun aligns perfectly with Manhattan’s street grid, creating a breathtaking display of light and architecture. Taking place this year on Wednesday, July 12, 2023 at 8:20 p.m., we are giving you the Need-To-Know for this very occasion.
What is Manhattanhenge?
Manhattanhenge refers to the moments when the sun’s rays align with the east-west streets of Manhattan, casting a radiant glow between the towering buildings. This phenomenon occurs around May 28th and July 12th, and on these dates, the sun sets directly on the city’s grid, creating a mesmerizing effect that captivates onlookers.
Coined by astrophysicist Neil deGrasse Tyson, who drew a parallel to the famous Stonehenge monument in England. The event has a rich history, with Native American tribes observing similar alignments long before the city’s establishment. Today, Manhattanhenge has become a celebrated cultural event, drawing photographers, enthusiasts, and curious spectators from all walks of life.
Experience and Viewing Locations:
To witness the enchantment of Manhattanhenge, several key locations offer the best vantage points. Streets such as 14th, 34th, 42nd, and 57th are particularly recommended, as they provide unobstructed views between the buildings. It’s advisable to arrive early and find a spot facing west to fully immerse yourself in the grandeur of the event.
Capturing the Phenomenon:
Manhattanhenge presents a unique opportunity for photographers to capture stunning images. To make the most of this moment, consider using a wide-angle lens to encompass the cityscape, experiment with different exposure settings, and be prepared to adjust your composition as the sun moves.
Some useful staff-picked products for this event are listed below:
Weather and Viewing Conditions:
As with any outdoor event, weather conditions play a crucial role in the visibility of Manhattanhenge. Clear skies are ideal for a picturesque display, allowing the sun’s rays to cascade between the buildings. However, even a partially cloudy sky can add a dramatic touch to the scene, creating an ethereal atmosphere.
Manhattanhenge is a magical occurrence that showcases the harmonious blend of nature and urban architecture. It invites us to pause, marvel at the beauty of our surroundings, and appreciate the wonders that unfold in unexpected ways. Whether you’re a photographer, a local, or a visitor to the city, experiencing Manhattanhenge is an unforgettable moment that connects you to the heartbeat of New York City.
Remember to mark your calendars and immerse yourself in the splendor of Manhattanhenge during its next occurrence. Don’t miss the opportunity to witness this extraordinary phenomenon that brings together nature, culture, and the spirit of Manhattan