What is Manhattanhenge and why are New Yorkers so excited about it
Manhattanhenge is a semi-annual phenomenon
New York buildings were not intentionally built for sunsets
Manhattanhenge will be visible again on July 11, 2022
Manhattanhenge is back and New York is as excited about it as ever. One of the most photo-worthy sights in the city, the Manhattanhenge is a semi-annual phenomenon that attracts people from all across the state and beyond.
Images of the Manhattanhenge dominate people's social media feeds as photographers, both professional and rookies, are set to capture the spectacle every year.
What is the Manhattanhenge?
Deriving its name from Stonehenge in Britain, the Manhattanhenge creates a visual similar to the ancient rock formation. Instead of large rocks, the high towers of Manhattan fit a setting sun right between them. This creates a picturesque moment for New Yorkers.
As the sun settles into the horizon, a light shade of orange is left behind, perfectly illuminating the busy streets of New York. The moment is known to bring everyone to a standstill.
Jackie Faherty, a senior scientist at the American Museum of Natural History, told New York Times in a statement, "The sun kisses the grid of one of the greatest cities, if not the greatest city in the world, and touches the whole corridor of the concrete jungle with these amazing golden hues. It’s a beautiful thing."
Why are New Yorkers so excited about this?
Apart from the scenic sunset that residents of the Big Apple get to enjoy, this year's Manhattanhenge may be a little extra special for some. The COVID-19 pandemic limited people's movement over the last two years, which meant that not many got to witness the phenomenon.
Moreover, many New Yorkers are known to take pride in Manhattanhenge being a free, exclusive and unintentional event. Unlike Stonehenge, Manhattan's buildings were not designed with sunsets in mind.
How to get a glimpse of Manhattanhenge?
The Manhattanhenge is visible from New York City's west-east corridors twice every year. The first sighting this year happened on May 29 and 30.
The Manhattanhenge will again appear in July. The full sun will be seen on July 11 at 8:20 PM. The sun will be half-hidden behind a building the next day but can be seen at 8:21 PM.