However, not everyone was able to get a clear or partial view of the total solar eclipse of 2019.
Paul Gauguin cruise liner passengers including astronomers, scientists, journalists, and astro-tourists hoping to find clear skies and calm sea conditions on their eclipse voyage were not so lucky from their vantage point in the Pitcairn Islands.
Just as the eclipse reached its peak directly over the luxury liner, its passengers, who paid $14,500 each for a berth, were blindsided by a mass of clouds.
Astronomer Richard Fienberg who was on board the Paul Gauguin said they were able to see some of the partial phases of the eclipse, but then clouds closed in and caused them to miss seeing the solar corona - the outermost part of the Sun’s atmosphere visible during a total solar eclipse.
“It got very dark, and we couldn’t see the Sun anymore. By the time of totality, there was almost no blue sky left anywhere. We were completely socked in.”
He said passengers knew that even in bad weather, they would still feel the temperature drop, the sky would get very dark, and they would spend a few precious minutes inside the moon’s dark shadow.
Traditional navigator Tua Pittman said the eclipse was a phenomenon that happened on a varied schedule and was not very beneficial for Polynesian navigation but was more significant spiritually to the ta’unga (traditional healers).