Jakarta (ANTARA News) - Indonesia is the starting point and the best spot to watch a total solar eclipse (TSE) that will occur on the morning of March 9, 2016.

A TSE happens when the Moon comes between the Sun and the Earth and casts the darkest part of its shadow (the umbra) on Earth. During a total eclipse of the Sun, the Moon covers the entire disk of the Sun.

The TSE is considered very rare as it is believed that another total solar eclipse will return only after a century, though some say in the next 350 years.

Being the major path of totality, Indonesia will be eager to use the momentum for the extraordinary and spectacular natural phenomenon to boost its tourism industry, by luring as many foreign tourists, scientists and astronomy lovers, as possible to watch from its islands.

The TSE will be visible for some two to three minutes in 45 cities and districts in 12 provinces across Indonesia.

The 12 Indonesian provinces are Bengkulu, West Sumatra, South Sumatra, Jambi, Bangka Belitung, West Kalimantan, Central Kalimantan, South Kalimantan, East Kalimantan, West Sulawesi, Central Sulawesi, and North Maluku.

The Indonesian government, however, will organize the main TSE event in the Bangka Belitung Province, where most of its waters lie in the path of the eclipse.

Thanks to the promotional activities conducted by the central and regional governments, as well as the private sector, the tourism industry is expected to reap the benefits.

All hotel rooms in Bangka Belitung (Babel) Province have been fully booked by tourists and scientists keen to watch the TSE.

Thousands of domestic and foreign tourists have made reservations in hotels in Pangkalpinang, Central Bangka, Belitung, and East Belitung for their stay from Sunday, March 6 to Wednesday, March 9, according to K.A. Tajuddin, head of the Babel tourist office.

Editor: Priyambodo RH
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