Party in the path of totality at these solar eclipse getaways across New England

Party in the path of totality at these solar eclipse getaways across New England


The solar eclipse takes place on April 8.

Rabbit Hill Inn in Lower Waterford, Vermont, is offering a special solar eclipse package. Timothy Leland / The Boston Globe

The countdown is on for April’s solar eclipse, and three New England states on the path of totality are bracing for an influx of visitors and epic viewing extravaganzas.

  • Want to head to Vermont for April’s solar eclipse? Better book now

The solar eclipse will take place across Mexico, the United States, and Canada on April 8, when the moon will pass between the Earth and the sun, completely blocking the face of the sun from the Earth.

While southern New England states will experience a partial eclipse, parts of Vermont, New Hampshire, and Maine are located on the path of totality and will see a total solar eclipse.

“Maine is the best spot in New England and one of the best places in North America to catch a glimpse of celestial history this April,” said Governor Janet Mills, in a statement. “Our state is ready to welcome stargazers from across the world to witness this once-in-a-generation event. I encourage Maine people and visitors to our state to make an observation plan and order eclipse glasses now so that they are ready to safely witness this extraordinary event.”

For those who still need accommodations and plans, check out some of the special hotel packages and events happening across the New England states in the path of totality on April 8.

Enjoy a Shadow of the Sun Festival, free snowshoes in Maine

This will be Maine’s first total solar eclipse since 1963, according to the Maine Office of Tourism.

Maine communities in the path of totality include most of Aroostook County, Millinocket, Rangeley, Greenville, Jackman, and Carrabassett Valley. Houlton, the last U.S. town in the path of totality, is bracing for about 40,000 visitors.

Rangeley will host a Shadow of the Sun Festival from April 5-8. Activities include Sound Bathing Under the Stars, Night Sky Trivia, a Mini Dark Sky Film Festival, Cosmic Yoga, a Viewing Party, and more.

The Rangeley Inn & Tavern is offering a solar eclipse package with breakfast, eclipse live streaming, and an eclipse party in the hotel’s banquet room. The Lodge at Moosehead Lake in Greenville is also offering a package that includes breakfast, viewing glasses, and eclipse-inspired cocktails.

Other programming in Maine includes free snowshoes and skis April 6-8 at Aroostook National Wildlife Refuge, a SkiClipse at Sugarloaf in Carrabassett Valley, a Lights Out Party at Saddleback Mountain in Rangeley, and more.

Check out more eclipse events in Maine.

Attend viewing parties, a moon dinner in Vermont

The last total eclipse in Vermont happened in 1932, according to the Vermont Department of Tourism & Marketing.

Much of northern Vermont and the Northeast Kingdom will be within the eclipse’s path of totality, including Burlington, Middlebury, Montpelier, and St. Johnsbury.

The folks at Rabbit Hill Inn in Lower Waterford have planned more than just a viewing party. The hotel will host a tea time with moon cookies and a three-course moon dinner special at 24 Carrot, the hotel’s fine dining restaurant.

Travelers at Hilton Burlington Lake Champlain will party like it’s the 1980s during the hotel’s Total Eclipse of the Heart bash. The ’80s-themed event will include music, cocktails, hors d’oeuvres, and more.

At Jay Peak Resort in Jay, which is offering lodging packages, the lifts will stop at 2 p.m. and the band Pink Talking Fish will play Pink Floyd’s “The Dark Side of the Moon” album as the eclipse reaches totality.

Other programming includes “Totality in Taylor Park” in St. Albans (which is expecting about 28,000 people); a viewing party at Patrick Leahy Burlington International Airport with live music, food trucks, drinks, and games; and a Solar Eclipse Festival for families at ECHO Lahey Center for Lake Champlain in Burlington.

Check out eclipse events in Vermont.

View the eclipse from a mountain, attend a drumming circle in New Hampshire

The last time New Hampshire was in the direct path of a solar eclipse was in 1959, and the next won’t be until 2079, according to the NH Division of Travel and Tourism Development.

The Great North Woods of New Hampshire will be in totality, which includes the area of Lancaster north to the Canadian border. However, the entire Granite State will experience about 95% totality.

The Inn at OxBow Acres in Milan, located on the path of totality, is offering a solar eclipse getaway package that includes eclipse glasses, dinner for two evenings, and a charcuterie board. The Appalachian Mountain Club is also offering lodging packages at both the Highland Center at Crawford Notch and Joe Dodge Lodge in Pinkham Notch, both an hour’s drive from the path of totality.

The Wentworth in Jackson has a solar eclipse package that includes lodging, breakfast, a $50 dining credit on Monday night, and a reception during the eclipse. The hotel is a short drive from Cranmore, which will host a solar eclipse viewing party at its summit, with an eclipse-themed lunch and activities.

Other programming includes a community viewing party at Arms Park with the SEE Science Center in Manchester, a drum circle at America’s Stonehenge in Salem, The Great American Eclipse Viewing Party at McAuliffe-Shepard Discovery Center in Concord, and more.

Check out eclipse events in New Hampshire.

  • Wear eclipse glasses while viewing to protect eyes from harmful solar radiation.
  • Stay on paved roads to ensure safe travel to and from viewing locations.
  • Be prepared for increased traffic and the possibility of backups on rural roads.
  • Have an emergency kit in your vehicle.
  • Do not rely on GPS in rural areas.
  • If weather conditions allow for safe hiking, remain on clearly marked trails to avoid getting lost or injured.
  • Obtain permission before accessing privately owned land for optimal viewing locations.
  • Monitor the forecast and dress appropriately for the weather, as conditions may be winter-like.
  • Research your destination and secure lodging reservations well in advance to avoid last-minute inconveniences.

Planning your trip to totality? Check out NASA’s 2024 Total Eclipse: Where & When page.

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