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The Sunset Index

Best Places to Watch
a Sunset Around the World

world map

At Lensbest, we understand that one of the benefits of clear vision is being able to appreciate nature’s most spectacular sights, and few can be more breathtaking than a sunset. Whether watching from a balcony or mountain-top, the colours and contrasts of a sunset are one of the most memorable views in the world. As the saying goes, ‘you can never watch too many sunsets’. From the white cliffs of Santorini, Greece, to the bronzed beaches of Bali, Indonesia, some locations, however, appear tailor-made to watch the sun take its daily dip below the horizon, which is why we decided to compile a list of the best sunset viewing-spots in the world.

To achieve this goal we asked the people who have had the good fortune to visit some of the most perfect sunset-watching locations in the world - travel journalists. Hailing from 46 different countries across the globe, the respondents were asked to give their opinion on the best spot to view a sunset in both their home country, as well as in those they’d visited around the world. They were also asked to describe the best season to view either in.* With over 600 locations nominated, the results were then compiled and refined into a final shortlist of the 100 best places to watch a sunset worldwide according to travel journalists.

Some of the travel experts we consulted cited sunsets that they had viewed more than twenty years ago, which goes to show just how strong an impression those moments made. Every one of us is able to recall where and when we saw the most spectacular sunsets of our lives,” says Ling Fan-Montzka, Managing Director of Lensbest. “It’s our hope that this study serves as both a reminder of those memories, as well as travel inspiration for those looking for their next must-see sunset destination.

Each column in the table below is filterable. The scores are out of 100, where the higher the score, the better. The full methodology explaining
how the poll was conducted and the results calculated can be found at the bottom of the page.

International Results

# location Country Region recommended seasons Score
1 Santorini Greece Europe Summer 100.00
2 Grand Canyon National Park, Arizona US Americas Summer 93.24
3 Mykonos Greece Europe Spring, Summer 87.59
4 Taj Mahal, Agra India Asia Spring 84.12
5 Madeira Portugal Europe Spring 82.30
6 Uluru, Uluru-Kata Tjuta National Park Australia Oceania Autumn 79.13
7 St Pete Beach, Florida US Americas Spring 78.69
8 Maasai Mara National Reserve Kenya Africa Summer 76.63
9 Phi Phi Thailand Asia Summer 75.98
10 Tahiti French Polynesia Oceania Summer, Winter 75.69
11 Jebel Akhdar, Al Hajar Mountains Oman Asia Spring, Winter 75.07
12 Delta, Moremi Game Reserve Botswana Africa Summer, Winter 74.94
13 Piazzale Michelangelo, Florence Italy Europe Spring 74.53
14 Matterhorn Switzerland Europe Winter 74.34
15 Uluwatu Temple, Bali Indonesia Asia Spring, Autumn 74.05
16 Angkor Wat, Siem Reap Cambodia Asia Summer 73.96
17 Ipanema Beach, Rio de Janeiro Brazil Americas Summer, Autumn 73.27
18 Mallory Square, Key West US Americas Winter 72.10
19 El Nido, Palawan Philippines Asia Summer 71.19
20 Ponte dell'Accademia, Venice Italy Europe Spring 71.18

Honourable Mentions

The locations below were also among the locations recommended
by travel experts via the poll.

Select country

Methodology


This index reveals the best locations around the world to watch a sunset, as well as the best season to view them in, according to travel journalists.

Via a poll, the journalists were asked to respond to the following seven questions:

  1. Which country do you currently reside in?
  2. Where is the best spot to watch a sunset in the city you currently reside in?
  3. Which season of the year do you think it's best to watch a sunset in this spot?
  4. What is the best spot to watch a sunset in the country you currently reside in?
  5. Which season of the year do you think it's best to watch a sunset in this spot?
  6. In your experience, what is the best spot to watch a sunset in the world?
  7. Which season of the year do you think it's best to watch a sunset in this spot?

Best Sunset
Viewing Spots


The answers were then compiled and refined into a final shortlist of 100 top locations, using the following calculations:

Each location nominated by respondents was given a score based on the number of times it was recommended. The score was weighted based on whether the location was nominated best in the respondents’ current city, current country or best in the world; 10%, 20% and 70% respectively. Finally, In order to avoid a bias due to more responses from certain countries compared to others, each location's score was scaled based on the total number of responses received from that country. The scaling formula applied was as follows:

Best Seasons


Weighted Score * 1/sq.root(total number of respondents from same country)

No weighting or scoring was applied when determining the recommended season (or top two seasons if they tied) to view the sunset from each location; the final season selection was based on the highest number of times it was recommended for each location. *Note: Countries with Tropical Climates technically have two seasons; the dry season (April to October), and the wet season, (November to March), and can experience hot and humid temperatures all year.