The 12 Best Places In America To Watch The Total Solar Eclipse

A solar eclipse occurs when the moon passes between Earth and the Sun, blocking it as viewed from some places on the planet. During a total solar eclipse, a very rare phenomenon, the moon completely obscures the sun so that only the sun's corona is visible for a few seconds, sometimes for two minutes.[slideshow:102241]

A total solar eclipse will be visible along a roughly 67-mile wide path across the U.S. on August 21. This will be the first such event to cross the country in 38 years. Even more significantly, this is the first coast-to-coast eclipse in 99 years.

All of North America will be treated to this one of nature's most awe inspiring sights. The path can be seen, will stretch from Salem, Oregon to Charleston, South Carolina, according to NASA. Observers outside this path will still see a partial solar eclipse where the moon covers part of the sun's disk.

South Carolina will be a significant destination for the eclipse because it will be the nearest spot within the path of totality for at least 100 million Americans in the Atlantic Seaboard and Florida, according to the Great American Eclipse.

You must not look directly at the Sun during the partial eclipse phase, when it is not completely blocked by the moon.

Click here for 12 of the best places to see the total solar eclipse

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