This year's summer solstice has come and gone, with the first day of summer happening on June 21.
The summer solstice marks the longest day of the year in the Northern Hemisphere and occurs when the sun is directly over the Tropic of Cancer, which sits at 23.5 degrees north latitude. Today, this happened at 6:07 a.m. ET. Around the world, various cultures celebrate the day in their own way, with some honoring traditions from years past and others simply heading outdoors to take in the natural phenomenon.
Scroll through for a few glimpses of the annual occasion.
Around the world
The summer solstice represents many things to many cultures, including new beginnings, unions, fertility and the harvest. Among various traditions, crowns of flowers or garlands are a popular way to celebrate nature.prevnext
Sunrise at Stonehenge
Thousands of people gathered at the ancient site to witness the sunrise, with the rock formation open to the public on a rare occasion.
Yesterdays' Summer Solstice Sunrise at Stonehenge pic.twitter.com/KRRQPS0GdH— William (Bill) Bryson (@InterestingFol1) June 22, 2018
It's speculated that Stonehenge was built with the summer solstice in mind, as the day sees the sun rise over the formation's Heel Stone and arrive at the center of the Altar Stone.prevnext
This village celebration was complete with a wooden sculpture, flowers, a maypole and plenty of music.
What a fantastic day of #Solstice celebrations yesterday! Thank you @Petrus_PIER @_IFOI @Fern1959 our coolest of hosts at #Warland and everyone who celebrated with us #Oakenhoof #Littleborough #LoveLife pic.twitter.com/OITevaiOv2— Clever Clogger (@CleverClogger) June 22, 2018
Daylight at midnight
Though it was midnight in Alaska, you'd never know it from this photo. The further North you travel on the solstice, the longer you'll see the sun, with the Arctic Circle experiencing almost perpetual daytime.prevnext
The nearly-midnight sun
Scotland experienced a similar phenomenon, with the sunset barely visible around 10 p.m. on the water.
Happy Summer Solstice from Scotland, the land of the nearly-midnight-sun.
Taken around 10:15-10:30PM pic.twitter.com/AbfldiBGrQ— Joy Clarkson (@joynessthebrave) June 21, 2018
New York City sunset
As the sun set on the longest day of the year in the Northern Hemisphere, the sky was alight with brilliant colors across the globe, including this rainbow moment captured in New York City.prevnext
A peaceful evening0comments
For some, their solstice tradition is simply sitting back and taking in nature's beauty.
11.30. And still light. Perfect end to the day. Summer solstice. Fire. Friends. Mug of hot chocolate. Curlews calling above. Dew on the land. Good night to you. Sleep well. ??? pic.twitter.com/wxOpZuau25— Shepherdess (@woolismybread) June 21, 2018
Photo Credit: Twitter / @woolismybreadprev