Pacific eclipse wows sky-gazers
The eclipse began over southern China early Monday before moving westwards towards Japan, and was continuing across the Pacific towards North America late Sunday local time.
Clouds across much of eastern China prevented a clear view, with some early risers in Hong Kong able to see only a small sliver of the "annular" eclipse and others coming away disappointed.
An annular eclipse occurs when the moon passes in front of the sun, but is too far from the Earth to block it out completely, leaving a "ring of fire" visible.
People in Tokyo got a spectacular sight of the Japanese capital's first glimpse of the phenomenon in 173 years.
Sadanobu Takahashi, 60, from Japan's northern Akita prefecture, said he and his wife joined a special two-day tour of Tokyo to watch the eclipse from the top of a 54-floor building in the Roppongi district.
"Look! Now it's a perfect ring. How wonderful!" he cried out.
Around 200 people were gathered on the roof terrace, where two-year-old Hikaru Ichikawa jumped up and ran around with special viewing glasses designed to protect his eyes, shouting: "I can see it! I can see it!"
Commuters from businessmen to schoolchildren stopped on the streets of Tokyo to watch as the eclipse developed, cheering when it became visible.
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