Where should you send would-be astronomers to view the next total eclipse? Sasha Wood puts Western Australia and East Timor head-to-head
In a nutshell: Western Australia will be in the solar eclipse’s path of totality on April 20, 2023, and with the prospect of clear skies, its coastline along the Exmouth Peninsula will offer one of the best viewing points for a rare total eclipse.
Tell me more: This stellar event is the perfect excuse for a long-awaited Australian adventure and Omega Breaks has a spectacular two-week tour taking in Australia’s highlights, with the solar eclipse at the heart of the itinerary.
Accompanied by renowned astronomer and Sky at Night presenter Pete Lawrence, the trip will include presentations and will take travellers to the best spot to view the eclipse. Clients fly into Cairns via Singapore and depart from Perth, stopping at iconic Australian sights along the way, including Great Barrier Reef, Uluru, Sydney and the Blue Mountains.
Did you know: Omega Breaks offers a 15-day Eclipse 2023 – The Wonders of Australia tour from £5,999 including international and domestic flights, guided tours and four-star hotels. omegabreaks.com
In a nutshell: The remote nation of East Timor in southeast Asia is an exciting and less-visited destination sitting under the trajectory of 2023’s solar eclipse. The cosmic event provides the perfect focal point for an intrepid itinerary exploring this mysterious tropical land.
Tell me more: The rare hybrid eclipse in East Timor promises a spectacular ‘ring of fire’ effect, which is apt given that the island sits within the Pacific’s own seismic ring of fire amid volcanos and earthquakes. Ethical operator Responsible Travel offers an eclipse itinerary and also makes sure local communities benefit.
After exploring relaxed capital Dili, colonial-era towns and idyllic Jaco island, with the chance to scale Mount Ramelau, travellers will be able to view a full eclipse for more than a minute from a strategic viewing point.
Did you know: A total eclipse happens only once every 100 years or so but can occur just a few years apart in selected spots. A rare hybrid eclipse changes in appearance as the shadow of the moon moves across the Earth’s surface.
Book it: Responsible Travel offers a 14-day Solar Eclipse 2023 small-group tour to East Timor from £2,995 including transfers, guided tours and some meals. Flights not included.