If you live in North America, it’s hard to not be caught up in eclipse fever at the moment. Next week marks the first total solar eclipse to hit the continent in more than 38 years, and as such there is a lot off excitement surrounding the event. So much so, that thousands of Americans are expected to travel to witness the eclipse in all its glory, with hotels and campsites booked solid in anticipation of the celestial show. If you haven’t figured out where you’ll be watching the eclipse unfold, Men’s Journal is here to help. The magazine has compiled its own list of the 19 best places to watch, with some surprisingly good options even for the last minute traveler.
Topping the list is my current city of residence, Nashville, TN. Nashville it he largest urban area that falls within the path of totality, plus it is home to good music, great food, and plenty of other activities to take part in as well. Naturally, this has made it a popular destination for eclipse viewers, and my advice is this is: if you haven’t already booked a place to stay or know someone who has a room to share, don’t bother coming. There are already warning signs about traffic and the entire city is expected to be crazy through the weekend and into early next week. Personally, I had planned to just take a lawn chair and sit out in my front yard, but now I’m headed to Tahoe for a backpacking trip instead. I’ll miss the totality from that vantage point, but I’ll be away from the craziness too. On top of that, the current weather reports look spotty for next Monday, meaning the skies may not be as clear as one would hope.
Other locations that make the list include Greenville, South Carolina; Jackson, Wyoming and the Great Smoky Mountains National Park. If you’re planning to go to the Smokies though, be sure to head towards the southwestern part of the park to catch the totality. Other sections will offer good views as well, but they won’t be in the perfect area to see the most spectacular part of the eclipse. And for the record, Grand Teton National Park is also in the in the line of totality as well.
The Men’s Journal article not only lists the location, but also gives readers reasons why that place is particular special. It also lists the author’s pick for the best places to watch and stay while in the area. Finding a place to stay at this point will be the real challenge, unless you have plenty of money to spend or can find a place to camp.
Either way, it should be quite an experience.
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