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Manhattanhenge 2018: When and where to see the sunset

Get your camera ready.

Manhattanhenge, when the setting sun aligns with the city’s street grid, lit up the sky on Thursday. Watch views of the fiery, red-orange sun from the FDR Four Freedoms Park on Roosevelt Island and from 42nd Street — all within 35 seconds. (Credit: amNewYork / Corey Sipkin; Noelle Lilley)

If you missed the stunning Manhattanhenge sunset on Thursday, you're in luck. Friday marks your final chance to catch the sunset align with the Manhattan grid this year.

While the full sun aligned on Thursday, providing the city with Instagram-worthy views, half the sun will align on Friday.

Scroll down for more information about the phenomenon.

How did Manhattanhenge get its name?

Manhattanhenge was named because of its similarity to when the sunrise aligns with Stonehenge in England. 

When does it happen?

The famous sunset happens on four days each year, twice when the full sun aligns and twice when half the sun aligns, according to the American Museum of Natural History. The dates fall around Memorial Day in May and in mid-July. 

Here are the dates and times for 2018:

Tuesday, May 29: Half the sun aligns at 8:13 p.m.

Wednesday, May 30: Full sun aligns at 8:12 p.m.

Thursday, July 12: Full sun aligns at 8:20 p.m.

Friday, July 13: Half the sun aligns at 8:21 p.m. 

Where are the best places to watch?

To see the sunset, your best bet is to go to clear cross streets, such as 14th, 23rd, 34th, 42nd and 57th streets. Another great spot to view is from Hunters Point Parks in Long Island City.

The AMNH recommends standing on the east side, but keeping a clear view of the west so you can still see New Jersey. Plan to get to your viewing spot at least a half hour before the sun is expected to align.

When does the sunrise align with the grid?

An early morning version of Manhattanhenge happens around mid-January and late November or early December each year, according to the AMNH. The best spots to see the sunrise are on 34th and 42nd streets, looking east.


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