- Martha Michael, The Atlanta Journal-Constitution
On Monday, August 21, the sun, moon and planet Earth will align for the first total solar eclipse to cross the country from coast-to-coast in nearly 100 years.
While Atlanta is not in the eclipse’s “path of totality,” the sky-darkening phenomenon will still be visible when the partial eclipse reaches its peak in the city at around 2:36 p.m.
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If you aren’t able to drive to one of Georgia’s eclipse-viewing destinations, there are plenty within Atlanta places to make the most of the once-in-a-lifetime event. The solar eclipse will last around three hours, beginning around 1:06 p.m. and ending around 4:02 p.m., right in time for happy hour. Fortunately, Atlanta is home to a number of rooftop bars and lounges that will give you a clear view of the sky, barring any bad weather. Get to one of these spots early to grab a seat, and a drink:
1. Little Five Points Corner Tavern: Located in the heart of town, Little Five Points reflects Atlanta’s diversity and fun-loving atmosphere. And at the Corner Tavern, there’s always an excuse to have fun. A rooftop party is in the works for the eclipse, so guests can celebrate their inner astronomer while enjoying a delicious array of tavern fare. Remember to get there early, however, as space on the roof is limited. 1174 Euclid Avenue SE, Atlanta. 404-521-0667, thecornertavern.com/little-5/.
2. Six Feet Under: There are two locations of this well-known Atlanta seafood spot, and both have roofs perfect for eclipse-watching. In fact, the views from both of Six Feet’s rooftops have received accolades from Zagat, Travel + Leisure magazine and several other publications. If you don’t like seafood, don’t panic. You’ll need more than a 3-hour solar eclipse to drink your way through its beverage menu. Grant Park: 437 Memorial Dr SE, Atlanta. 404-523-6664. West Midtown: 685 11th St. NW, Atlanta. 404-810-0040, sixfeetunderatlanta.com.
3. 5 Seasons Westside Restaurant and Brewery: While this local brewery doesn’t have any ‘special plans’ for the solar eclipse, its Westside location will be open promptly at 11:30 a.m. to welcome guests. Beyond their own brews like “Elmers Gluten Free” and the “Electric Goat Maibock Lager.” 5 Seasons offers a lengthy gastropub menu and an even lengthier list of wines, beers and spirits to keep you satisfied throughout an entire afternoon of eclipse-viewing from its spacious rooftop deck. 1000 Marietta St. NW #204, Atlanta. 404-875-3232, 5seasonsbrewing.com.
4. 5Church Atlanta: A newer addition to the midtown scene, 5Church is an upscale spot to watch the solar eclipse over Peachtree Street, signature cocktail in hand. In honor of the eclipse, they will be giving out free MoonPies to spectators between 2 and 3 p.m. Be sure to try the “Georgia Forecast,” a swirl of tequila, passion fruit juice, sour mix and muddled jalapeno, as you watch the sun and moon move across the sky. 1197 Peachtree St. NE #528, Atlanta. 404-400-3669, 5churchatlanta.com.
5. O-Ku: This Westside hotspot will open early for a special eclipse viewing party on the rooftop at 1 p.m. While you won’t be able to get your sushi fix until the main dining room opens at 5 p.m., the rooftop bar will be in full operation until then. A ‘Solar frosé’ – a ‘dark moon’ version of their popular frosé cocktail will be available for $8. Westside Ironworks, 1085 Howell Mill Road NW A3, Atlanta. 404-500-2383, o-kusushiatl.com.
6. The Sun Dial: Atop the Westin Peachtree Plaza downtown, the Sun Dial restaurant and lounge offers visitors 360-degree panoramic views of the city skyline, and promises to get you a close-up view of the eclipse from 723 feet up. It will open at 1 p.m. and feature a limited edition cocktail called “The Eclipse,” made with champagne, orange juice and dark rum. The restaurant will be open for lunch, serving its savory Southern cuisine while you experience the supernatural solar eclipse. The Westin Peachtree Plaza, 210 Peachtree St. NW, Atlanta. 404-659-1400, sundialrestaurant.com.
Don’t forget to grab your eclipse-viewing glasses to protect your eyes. Here’s where to find free glasses in Atlanta.