Path of Totality
During a total solar eclipse, the sun is completely blocked by the moon. When viewed from space, you would see the shadow of the moon being cast onto Earth. When viewing the eclipse from within that shadow caused by the moon, you wouldn’t be able to see any of the sun. This is the best place to view the eclipse from!
If you’re outside of the moon’s shadow, a small portion of the sun will still be visible (and it is dangerous to your eyes to look at it without proper solar glasses or other protective equipment). The farther away from the moon’s shadow you are, the less of the sun will be covered by the moon.
The path that the moon’s shadow takes across the Earth is called the Path of Totality. During the Great American Eclipse 2017, thousands, perhaps millions of people, will travel to where the moon’s shadow will travel during the total solar eclipse to get the best eclipse experience possible.
This is an image of the path of totality as it cut across the USA August 21, 2017.