The Great American Eclipse 2024
On 08 April 2024, one of nature’s great phenomenon’s will be occurring across North America, as a total eclipse casts a spell from the sun kissed beaches of Pacific Mexico, to the craggy shores Atlantic Canada.
Whether this is your first time travelling to a total eclipse or your thirty first (eclipses happen roughly once a year somewhere in the world), experiencing a total eclipse first hand is an unforgettable moment that will stay with you forever.
As the moon passes between the sun and the Earth, a streak of the USA and Canada will be plunged into darkness for up to four and half minutes, effectively turning day to night in the middle of morning,
Eclipse hunters will be spoilt for choice as to where to spot this incredible natural event, so we have put together a rough guide as to where you can watch the total eclipse in the USA and Canada on 08 April 2024.
The lone star state is the first point of the USA where the 2024 eclipse is due to pass over and, with the longest duration of totality (the period in which the sun is completely obscured by the moon) it’s set to be one of the most popular locations to witness this amazing event.
San Antonio and Austin, two of Texas’ most charismatic cities are on the very fringe of the eclipse’s pathway, but are still in the 125 mile wide zone of totality, meaning you will be able to experience roughly a minute and a half of darkness the eclipse without travelling to far from the city.
To see the eclipse at its best, we would recommend travelling out to Texas Hill Country. The town of Bandera, the ‘cowboy capital of the world’ is set to experience over four minutes of totality. Once the total eclipse has passed, stay on for a night or two to experience traditional country music, rodeos or life on a ranch.
Located equidistance from San Antonio and Austin – Fredericksburg, Texas is another town that will fall in the path of the 2024 solar eclipse. This pretty town was established by German settlers in 1846 and has been enchanting visitors ever since with its heritage architecture, German cuisine and traditional Texas welcome. These days Fredericksburg is the heart of Texan wine country, so you’ll be able combine your eclipse experience with some wine tasting.
As the total eclipse travels North East it will cast its magical shadow over the cities of Dallas and Fort Worth, both are within the zone of totality.
Just thirty miles apart, these two cities retain their own strong identity, so both should be visited as part of a eclipse self-drive itinerary.
Fort Worth, the smaller of the two cities is very much in touch with its cowboy roots – here you will be able to see the famed longhorn cattle being driven through the street twice a day – a sight you will only see in Texas! Despite their historic cattle drive, Fort worth’s stockyards are surprisingly modern, offering hundreds of shops and restaurants to choose between.
Dallas is every bit as glitzy as the soap opera that out it on the map for many British visitors, making this a great base to see the eclipse from. A hub of nightlife, shopping and culture, the city has an air of vibrance and sophistication about it that will keep you entertained long after the eclipse has passed.
To view a suggested Texas itinerary, click here
Crossing the state border, the Great North American eclipse will leave Texas behind and pass into Arkansas, including the state capital Little Rock and the stunning Ozark mountains.
Arkansas only receives a fraction of visitors compared to its neighbour Tennessee, but that only adds to the appeal, as its breath-taking wilderness feels that little bit wilder. Visitors to the ‘Natural State’ will be spoilt with miles of hiking and mountain bike trails, meaning you are sure to find a quiet corner to observe the total eclipse from.
The town of Mountain View will be busier than normal, so book ahead if you want to be sure of getting a room in the heart of the Ozark mountains. Mountain View is famed for its folk music, which you will hear resonating from front porches and the town square in the warmer months. To get a taste of the folk music scene a visit to the Ozark Folk Centre is a must whilst you are in town.
Also in the path of the eclipse is the town of Hot Springs – named after the nearby Hot Springs National Park. Although you cannot swim in the national park there are an assortment of spas and traditional bathhouses that you can unwind in after a long day of hiking, biking or eclipse watching!
Located roughly halfway between Mountain View and Hot Springs is Little Rock, the state capital is also in line to see the 2024 total eclipse, making it a good spot to see view the event. Rich in history but with a modern outlook, Little Rock offers something for everyone.
The cities hub is the bustling River Market District, home to a vast array of restaurants, shops, bars and museums. A must-visit is the Clinton Presidential Centre, which tells visitors the story of the life and work of the 42nd President of the United States. The Central High Museum, the only High School located within a National Historic Site, which tells the story of the civil rights movement in the city, is also worth visiting
Music lovers may be interested in combining a visit to Arkansas as part of a tailor-made road trip to Tennessee and Alabama – combining Blues, folk and country on one trip! To learn more follow this link.
Moving North East, the 2024 total eclipse will skim over the edges of Missouri and into Indiana – where it will include the state capital Indiana in its path of totality.
Although it’s best known for its famous speedway and flagship motor race, the Indy 500, there’s much more to this Mid-West City than fast cars!
The best way to get under Indiana’s skin is to hire a bike and explore the Indiana Cultural Trail – ten miles of pedestrian and cycle friendly paths that connect 6 of the city’s best neighbourhoods.
Visit broad Ripple Village, with its pavement cafes, beautiful parks, boutique shops and lively nightlife, or try Fountain Square where you’ll find quirky antique shops and a diverse range of restaurants. Over at Mass Avenue you will be able to get a feel for Indiana’s creative side, here you’ll find bold public art and live theatre, along with plenty of independent dining options to choose from.
With the recent introduction of a direct flight to Cincinnati (just a three-hour drive), Indy and the Midwest is now better connected than ever.
Perched on the edge of Lake Erie, in Northern Ohio, the city of Cleveland will fall under the spell of The Great American Eclipse at 13:59 local time.
Approximately 30,000 visitors are expected to descend on the city’s Science Centre, which will be hosting a three-day family friendly festival to celebrate this rare event. Eclipse hunters will be able to enjoy hands on science activities and entertainment, as well as meeting with NASA experts that will be sharing their knowledge.
Once the eclipse has passed, travellers to Cleveland will be able to explore the renown Rock and Roll Hall of Fame – a must visit for any music fan. At 50 years old, the museum includes artists ranging from Abba to ZZ top, and so many more in between. There are 5 floors of exhibitions to discover, along with regular live music performances.
Continuing on from Cleveland you can travel East or West to take a tour of the Great Lakes, visiting the incredible scenery of Lakes Michigan and Huron, or taking in the unique cities of Detroit, Toronto and Chicago.
Niagara Falls, New York
Travelling North East at speed of over 3000 miles an hour, the 2024 total eclipse will pass over Niagara Falls and the nearby city of Buffalo.
Niagara Falls are a mind-blowing experience whatever time of year you visit, but to be there during the eclipse will be very special – that is providing the weather plays ball! Early April in this part of the USA is the tail end of winter, so there is a real possibility of cloudy weather obscuring the eclipse.
That won’t put many visitors off though, so bear this in mind as hotels and B&B’s will be in great demand over this period, meaning prices will be high and availability will be limited.
if travelling to Niagara you may be interested in our Big Apple and Beyond itinerary
Of all the parts of Canada to experience the North American Eclipse, Montreal is the easiest option to travel too. It has excellent air connections with the UK, plenty of hotel rooms and excellent onward travel to the other Eastern Cities of Canada by both road and rail.
April in Montreal will normally be too cold to enjoy the cities pavement cafés, and too early for the buzzy festival scene, but eclipse hunters will no doubt be charmed by its cobbled streets, historic architecture, and lively atmosphere of the second largest French speaking city on the world.
If you plan to visit Montreal for the 2024 Total eclipse we can offer you a tailor-made city break, rail tour of Eastern Canada or a self-drive itinerary such as our splendid nature of Quebec tour.
Having passed through Maine, New England and New Brunswick Canada, the path of the eclipse will cut across Newfoundland, Canada marking the end of its journey across North America.
A rugged island, Newfoundland is as remote as it is beautiful. Cast adrift in the Atlantic, you may see icebergs floating past or whales swimming by. Travel inland and you will find mountainous fjords, fishing villages that have
been largely unchanged for centuries and vast masses of wilderness. It’s an explorer’s paradise and the perfect destination for anyone wanting to get off the beaten track.
In terms of viewing the eclipse, the path of totality is going to pass over The Terra Nova National Park, Canada’s most Easterly national park, where ancient forests meet the craggy shores of the Atlantic Ocean. The park is idyllic in summer, but less so in thee first days of Spring, which is when the Eclipse will take place. The parks facilities do not open until 19 May.
Should you wish to travel to Newfoundland later on in the year, we would be delighted to arrange a trip for you, such as our Newfoundland & Labrador Explorer self-drive itinerary.