The Australian Solar Eclipse 20 April 2023

A total solar eclipse will occur over North West Cape in Western Australia in the morning of 20 April 2023.

The eclipse is classified as a hybrid eclipse because it starts as an annular eclipse in the Indian Ocean before changing to the most spectacular of events, a total eclipse well before reaching Australia.

This unusual solar eclipse will only be observable on land from the North West Cape area in Western Australia as well as Timor-Leste and Indonesia.

In the North West Cape area, at the town of Exmouth, the eclipse will begin as a partial solar eclipse at 10 hrs 04 min 32 secs (AWST) and reach totality at 11 hrs 29 min 50 secs (AWST).  Totality will last only about 54 seconds and the eclipse will finally come to an end at 13 hrs 02 min 34 secs (AWST).

*The countdown timer above is set for Exmouth. Check the interactive map below for the exact times at your observing location.

This rare and spectacular phenomenon is probably the most awe inspiring event in the natural world.

At the same time the whole of Australia will experience a partial solar eclipse –  a solar eclipse seen from within the Moon’s penumbra, where the Moon appears to block part (but not all) of the Sun’s surface (the photosphere).

The path of the solar eclipse on 20 April 2023
Michael Zeiler /

The process of the moon moving across the face of the sun takes up to three hours, but the brief moment of totality, when the sun is completely obscured by the moon, is much briefer. In this case it will only last a total of about 60 seconds, depending on the exact location.

Observers at the Ningaloo Eclipse can expect to see the sun’s bright disc slowly being covered by the silhouette of the moon to produce a diminishing solar crescent.

Just as the last of the sun disappears behind the moon, an interesting optical phenomenon will occur,  known as Baily’s Beads or the Diamond Ring Effect. This is when the final rays of sunlight pass between the rugged Lunar topography.

Interactive Google Map – showing the path of the eclipse (map opens in new window)

Google Maps / Xavier M. Jubier


There will be five total solar eclipses visible in Australia over the next 15 years. After the 20 April eclipse the next four will be:

1) 22 July 2028 crossing the Kimberley in WA, NT, southwest Qld, NSW and passing centrally through Sydney;

2) 25 November 2030 across SA, northwest NSW, southern Qld ending at sunset in southeast Qld;

3) 13 July 2037 Through southern WA, southern NT, western Qld through to pass over Brisbane and the Gold Coast;

4) 26 December 2038 through central WA, SA, and along the NSW/Vic border.

The image below shows the paths of these eclipses across Australia.