Michaël Torfs

Longest day 20 minutes longer in the far north than in the far south of Belgium

It’s June 21, Midsummer’s Day and the longest day of the year. In Belgium, like elsewhere in the Northern Hemisphere, the further north you go the more daylight you have during the period between the spring and autumn equinoxes. The difference in the length of daylight between the far south and far north of Belgium is greatest on the Summer Solstice. Today people in Essen in the north Antwerp Province will enjoy 20 minutes more daylight than those in Virton in the far south of Luxemburg Province.    

Moreover, according to the VRT’s weatherman Frank Debossere it never really gets completely dark on the solstice. 

The astronomical summer starts at the moment that the sun is directly above the Tropic of Cancer. This will happen at 5:54pm today. The sun will gave reached its most northerly position. The further north you go, the longer it will stay light. This is also evident in a relatively small country like Belgium, where there will be a difference of some 20 minutes in the length of daylight hours between the extreme south and the far north of the country.

"In Virton there will be 16 hours and 18 minutes of daylight on 21 June. In Essen, the most northerly point in the country, there will be 16 hours 38 minutes of daylight. This is 20 minutes more than in Virton”, Frank Deboosere said.