Sunsets on the Road: My Top Ten

I love sunsets. They can be a vivid and romantic capper for a beautiful day on the road. Here are a few dramatic and memorable sunsets that come to mind:

1. On the Greek isle of Santorini, nursing a drink with a single flower in a vase on my table, as I sit on the lip of the crater high above the glittering Aegean Sea.

2. On the Nile, just across from Luxor, as the sun sets, the temperature drops, and villages come alive. As I’m poled along the shore in a classic felucca boat, children frolic, long-legged birds strike a pose, and I glide like a silent voyeur through the reeds.

3. On Denmark’s Aerø Island, warming myself by a beach fire while children splash in the shallow waters of the bay, and parents sit peacefully on the porches of tiny beach cabins.

Ærøskøbing homes

The sun sets on Denmark’s Aerø Island. (Photo: Dominic Arizona Bonuccelli)

4. In Granada, Spain, joining the “Gypsies and hippies” at the St. Nicholas viewpoint as the setting sun makes the Alhambra glow red, evoking the tumult of its violent history.

5. On a ferry charging across the Greek sea, with dolphins — who seem to come out for the sunset — playfully loping ahead of the ship’s bow.

6. In England’s Cumbrian Lake District, sitting pensively on a stone at the Castlerigg Stone Circle just outside of Keswick, savoring a moment which inspires anyone to poetry…especially as sheep stir up the fragrance of the wild grass and the scent comes with a whiff of mystical druids, who once used these stones for their worship, dancing in the long shadows.

7. In Paris, sitting on the steps of the Sacré-Cœur atop Montmartre, surrounded by backpackers, buskers, and local lovers as Paris spreads out before me and slowly the sky grows dark and the City of Light is turned on.

8. On a Norwegian fjord, taking my dessert of ice cream and fresh berries out of my hotel’s dining room and sitting along at the end of the pier. The water is glassy and frightfully deep, black rock cliffs rocket into the sky above me, and the sun dips too early behind the peaks.

9. In Assisi, on the rampart of a ruined castle, with olive groves at my feet leading to a vast and lush Umbrian vista; imagining the age when each town was its own little state, and enjoying the same birdsong that inspired St. Francis.

10. And my favorite sunset: from my deck back home, on the Puget Sound just north of Seattle, as a golden path of sparkles leads across the bay to snowcapped Olympics. The sun settles behind the latest in a series of chosen peaks, and the ferries ply silently across as the water begins to glow like floating lanterns.

What is your favorite sunset far from home?


25 Replies to “Sunsets on the Road: My Top Ten”

  1. The most amazing sunsets of my life were seen from the ferry between Eminonu and Kadikoy in Istanbul. On the Bosphorus, between two continents, with the sun setting behind Hagia Sophia and the Blue Mosque, the seagulls squawking, sipping a glass of Turkish tea—does life get any better than that? Even better: that 30-minute sunset cruise only costs about 60 cents!

  2. From the second level of the Eiffel Tower, and from the Grand Balcon Sud Trail at Chamonix, as the late afternoon sun bathes Mt Blanc. Oh, and sitting at a cliffside table in the Belvedere restaurant in Domme while the sun sets over the Dordogne valley.

  3. Every new one that’s great is my favorite. So many beautiful sunsets over the years, so many photos because I was sure THAT one was the best. I have to admit that one of the most spectacular and long lasting was in the Botanical Garden in Phoenix, Arizona, not Europe.

  4. My favorite sunset was in Mongolia–not looking into the west but looking in the opposite direction where the entire sky was ablaze with color and, in the midst of it all, a double rainbow peeked through

  5. Standing on a dock of one of the small coves on Mount Desert Island, Maine, watching a gorgeous sunset and hearing the water lap at the rocks beneath the dock.

  6. I also love sunsets. I especially love watching the progression as the sun sets and the sky changes. Some of the most beautiful have been at the Oregon coast, a few hours from home. But an extremely memorable one was on a cruise in the Antarctic. Several huge icebergs were silhouetted against the dramatic orange sky.

  7. I think some of my most memorable sunsets have been right here at home. We live in the mountains and have been blessed with some amazing sunsets. One of my favorites I took with my cell phone from the window of our truck as we were driving. The sun was reflected on our lake and silhouetted 3 fishermen on the shore. It was an amazing sight.

  8. I have seen some spectacular sunsets; the green flash reverberating through thin clouds from a warm Oahu beach, a rainbow high in a salmon-colored sky at sunset after a storm in Oregon. I’d have to vote for Puget Sound sunsets as my favorites. Loved your description.

  9. For whatever reason besides the beautiful sunsets of Europe and across the planet….the most beautiful I have seen are in Tulelake, CA. Go figure.

  10. San Gimiagno (spelling?). The bells were ringing; Tuscany was all around with a view from one of the “skyscrapers”.

  11. I haven’t seen any but the last one and it is my favorite. When we visit Seattle we do make a point of driving over to Edmonds and watch the ferry go back and forth while the sun sets. Nothing better.

  12. Sitting on my hotel balcony overlooking the pyramids in Egypt listening to only the crickets while drinking a coke.

  13. A memorable sunset experience was awaiting sunset in Florence over the Ponte Vecchio Bridge. The reflections in the water of golden lights from the bridge, together with the sunset reflections were breathtaking.

  14. My favorite sunset was at a restaurant in Ixtapa, Mexico, called La Villa de la Selva. It’s built right into the cliffs of the Pacific coast. My husband and I ate outdoors, feasted on fish and Mexican wine, then watched the sun go down over a brilliantly colored sky and a deep blue ocean.

  15. Nice list. Thanks for sharing. We too have travelled through most of Europe over the last 40 years, and the next generation of our family has chosen to make Australia its future so now enjoy summer sunsets at Christmas. Our sunsets back home on the BC Gulf Islands (read San Juan Islands for the American translation) will always be our favourite. Europe? Nothing like a sunset in the Scottish Highlands!

  16. I have see the sunsets from my daughter’s place in Hermosa Beach over the ocean. Just amazing! Thank you Steve for your shows and blogs. I enjoy them both.

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