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Home / Science / Many International Visitors to View Solar Eclipse Next Month in Chile

Many International Visitors to View Solar Eclipse Next Month in Chile



The world's last total solar eclipse happened in August 2017.

A total of solar eclipse happens when the sun, moon and Earth perfectly line up. The next total solar eclipse will happen on July 2.

However, the total eclipse can only be seen in a few places in the world. This year, the path of totality wants to pass over areas of Chile and Argentina. The U.S. space agency NASA says the sun goes down to the moon for fourteen minutes during this eclipse.

Chile's northern coquimbo region where the total solar eclipse is expected to be visible .

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People watching the solar eclipse on the lawn of Griffith Observatory, Los Angeles, California, US, August 21, 2017.

A total solar eclipse is rare. The European Southern Observatory estimates that there is no specific place on earth, on average, once every 360 years. Visitors from around the world are expected to flood in the coming weeks.

The Coquimbo region sits on the Pacific coast at the foot of the Andes Mountains. Heavy demand means many hotel rooms are full ahead of the eclipse.

Flights to Coquimbo are offered by Chile's LATAM Airlines as well as low cost carriers Sky and JETSMART. Travel companies are selling out very fast.

A clock in the coastal town of La Serena shows a countdown to the big day. "People have gone mad," one person from the town told Reuters about all the local excitement.

Chile is a popular place for astronomers to visit. The country has many large, international research telescopes.

"It's a unique occasion ," Chilean astronomer Ivo Saviane told Reuters from the La Silla Observatory that he oversees.

Chilean President Sebastián Piñera is one of 150 " VIPs " with tickets to watch the eclipse at La Silla. Piñera has identified the eclipse as one of the most important events in Chile this year. 2019.

Luis Calderon is an engineer at La Serena. He told Reuters he thinks the cost and effort of visiting Chile wants to be well worth it. I'm Bryan Lynn.

Bryan Lynn wrote this story for VOA Learning English, based on a report from Reuters and online sources. Mario Ritter was the editor.

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Words in This Story

region n. a particular area in a country of the world

visible adj. to be seen

occasion n. important event or ceremony

VIP n. an abbreviation for very important person: someone who is famous in a special way


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