The Getaway
Destinations to See the April 8, 2024, Solar Eclipse in its Totality

According to "Liquor Store Guy" on X (formerly known as Twitter,) "If you live 4 hours from a total eclipse and do not make the effort to see it, your priorities are wrong." And apparently, "Partials" are the most boring thing he's ever seen and "Totality is the Way"

A large population of both Americans and Canadians live within a 4-hour drive of the Eclipse's path. Below, you'll find the cities you can travel to view the eclipse and locations within them to get the best view of the dark day sky and the time of day you'll be able to witness the eclipse and maximize your viewing time. And make sure you get your eclipse glasses that are ISO 12312-2 and CE certified for direct solar observation.

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01 Waco, TX

Waco Texas, Historic Suspension Bridge

  • Time of Day: 1:38 PM Central Daylight Tim
  • Duration: 4 minutes, 12 Seconds

Thankfully, Baylor University isn't in either NCAA Final Four this year - there would just be too much madness in Waco for this day - and in April, no less. The Waco Suspension Bridge and the Lake Waco Wetlands could be great places to experience this once-in-a-lifetime event.

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02 Hot Springs, AR

Tower structure in Garvan Woodland Gardens in Arkansas

  • Time of Day: 1:49 PM Central Daylight Time
  • Duration: 3 minutes, 36 Seconds

Hot Springs is a popular springtime tourist destination that'll be buzzing thanks to the totality and duration of the eclipse. Great places in town and nearby to view the eclipse include Hot Springs National Park, Lake Catherine State Park, and Garvan Woodland Gardens. The ultimate location would be the Hot Springs Mountain Tower.

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03 Carbondale, IL

  • Time of Day: 1:59 PM Central Daylight Time
  • Duration: 4 minutes, 9 seconds

Go Salukis! Carbondale is home to Southern Illinois University, and its campus would be a great place to witness this monumental event. The Adler Planetarium, NASA EDGE and others will host a guided experience at Saluki Stadium.

 

decorTip

Find out more info on this collective Eclipse event and score tickets here.

04 Indianapolis, IN

  • Time of Day: 3:06 PM Eastern Daylight Time
  • Duration: 3 minutes, 49 seconds

The Indianapolis Motor Speedway is hosting its own Eclipse Festival. Not only will you witness the eclipse, but you'll also be able to see some IndyCar demo laps and listen to talks from Purdue University and NASA scientists. There will also be a broadcast of NASA TV's coverage of the eclipse.

Sunrise bathes Indianapolis Motor Speedway in pastel colors on the morning of the 2014 Indy 500 Bruce Alan Bennett / Shutterstock.com

05 Columbus, IN

  • Time of Day: 3:06 PM Eastern Daylight Time
  • Duration: 3 minutes, 44 seconds

Experience the eclipse amidst Columbus' renowned public artworks and modernist architecture. Notable buildings include I.M. Pei's Cleo Rogers Memorial Library, Cesar Pelli's Common Centre and Mall, and Eero Saarinen's Miller House and Garden.

 

06 Cleveland, OH

  • Time of Day: 3:14 PM Eastern Daylight Time
  • Duration: 3 minutes, 49 seconds

If you're looking to watch the Eclipse while standing on the shores of Lake Erie, Edgewater Park will be your best bet. And if you want to get as close as possible to the line of totality, the suburb of Avon Lake is a great choice. Observatory Park in Montville, one of only two Dark Sky Parks in Ohio, is also a great place to fully experience the eclipse.

Sunrise is coming up behind the Land at Cleveland Script Sign(Edgewater Park) YUKiO_CLE / Shutterstock.com

07 Erie, PA

  • Time of Day: 3:16 PM Eastern Daylight Time
  • Duration: 3 minutes, 42 seconds

Erie is the closest location to the path of totality in the state of Pennsylvania and provides ample opportunities for eclipse viewing on the shores of Lake Erie. Presque Isle State Park and its sandy beaches provide a plethora of pleasant spaces to enjoy this unique moment.

 

08 Buffalo, NY

  • Time of Day:3:18 PM Eastern Daylight Time
  • Duration: 3 minutes, 45 Seconds

Buffalo lies almost exactly on the totality line, and the Tifft Nature Preserve, located about 4 miles south of Downtown, lies almost exactly on it. You'll also have a westerly view of Lake Erie if you watch it there.

 

09 Niagara Falls, NY and Ontario

Overlooking the Niagara Falls ( American Falls and Horseshoe Falls ) in sunset time.

  • Time of Day: 3:18 PM Eastern Daylight Time
  • Duration: 3 Minutes, 30 Seconds

Niagara Falls is making the eclipse a whole weekend event and capping it off with a fireworks spectacular at 8:30 PM on April 8. The Falls are expecting large crowds - because who wouldn't want to see such an event at such a monumental site - and recommending that you pick a place to plant your stuff for the day and ensure that you pack water, a full tank of gas, medications, and cell phone chargers, as traffic may be heavier than usual.

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10 Rochester, NY

  • Time of Day: 3:20 PM
  • Duration: 3 minutes, 41 Seconds

If you're looking to watch the eclipse overlooking Lake Ontario on one of the Great Lakes' best natural sand beaches, Rochester's Ontario Beach Park could be your best bet. It's right in the line of totality, with the expected duration exceeding that of Rochester's Downtown. The grounds of the Charlotte-Genesee Lighthouse could also be a great place to plant your lawn chair, as it will be hosting Eclipse-specific festivities.

 

11 Kingston, ON, Canada

  • Time of day: 3:22 PM Eastern Daylight Time
  • Duration: 2 minutes, 52 seconds

To experience the eclipse in Canada with a southern view of Lake Ontario, Kingston is a good bet and is the best place in Ontario outside of Niagara Falls to experience the path of totality. Kingston is expecting up to 500,000 visitors, and the city will be closing a number of roads to aid with viewing over the lake. Queens University Eclipse Ambassadors will be assisting at a number of locations, such as Lake Ontario Park to answer questions. The city will not be handing out eclipse glasses - you must bring your own.

 

12 Cornwall, ON, Canada

  • Time of Day: 3:24 PM Eastern Time
  • Duration: 2 minutes, 15 seconds

Cornwall won't last nearly as long as Kingston, but you'll still get to experience totality. The city is hosting a party at Lamoureux Park on the bank of the St. Lawrence River, with bouncy castles for the kids, live music for the adults, and a clear view of the eclipse.

 

13 Plattsburgh, NY

  • Time of Day: 3:25 PM
  • Duration: 3 minutes, 34 seconds

The City of Plattsburgh will be hosting an eclipse viewing party at Plattsburgh City Beach, which will provide a southeast-facing view of the eclipse over the Cumberland Bay of Lake Champlain. In addition to the eclipse, you'll enjoy some grub from local food trucks and the musical stylings of local rock band Ursa and the Major Key (how apropos).

 

14 St. Albans Town, VT

  • Time of Day: 3:26 PM Eastern Daylight Time
  • Duration: 3 Minutes, 32 Seconds

It's like a mirror image of the festivities across Lake Champlain in Plattsburgh - St. Albans Town is hosting a party with live music and food trucks, but here you'll be facing southwest rather than southeast.

 

15 Sherbrooke, QC, Canada

  • Time of Day: 3:27 PM Eastern Daylight Time
  • Duration: 3 minutes, 24 seconds

While Montreal will be in the path of totality, Sherbrooke is closer to the middle and its duration will be over 2 minutes longer. Despite a winter storm warning on the horizon, it appears that Sherbrooke will be clear for great viewing on Monday, so it should be worth the trek. A challenge may be finding a great place to sit and view the eclipse, as the Sherbrooke Museum of Nature and Science is hosting a reservation-only viewing party at Parc Lucien-Blanchard that is completely booked. Despite the shorter duration, you may be happier watching the event that Cirque Du Soliel is hosting in Montreal.

A partial solar eclipse is seen Ringo Chiu / Shutterstock.com
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