Summer solstice 2021: Sensual traditions on the longest day of the year

CNN  — 

Call it romance. Call it sensuality. Heck, call it old-fashioned lust if you wish.

Do you feel a stirring in your heart? Maybe a jump in your libido? Heck, are you just getting plain ol’ hot and bothered?

The longest day of the year in the Northern Hemisphere kicks off the official calendar start of summer and with it, the bounty of the harvest. So it should come as no surprise that the solstice is linked to fertility – both of the plant and human variety – in destinations around the world.

CNN Travel explores some of those sensuous, longstanding summer traditions. But first, we’ll take a look at some of the science.

Summer solstice: Q&A

Question: Okay, but I like precision. Exactly when is the summer solstice in 2022?

Answer: The answer depends on where you are during the solstice.

It will happen precisely at 09:13 UTC (Universal Coordinated Time) on Tuesday, June 21, according to NASA. Your time zone in relation to UTC determines the time and date the solstice happens for you.

The long day of summer solstice provides plenty of light to explore around Istanbul, including the grounds of the Hagia Sophia. Turkey's largest city will have about 15 hours and eight minutes of daytime.

– Tokyo: 12:32 p.m. Monday
– Bangkok, Thailand: 10:32 a.m. Monday
– Kolkata, India: 9:02 a.m. Monday
– Dubai: 7:32 a.m. Monday
– Istanbul: 6:32 a.m. Monday
– Krakow, Poland: 5:32 a.m. Monday
– Lisbon, Portugal: 4:32 a.m. Monday
– Dakar, Senegal: 3:32 a.m. Monday
– Rio de Janeiro: 12:32 a.m. Monday
– Philadelphia: 11:32 p.m. Sunday
– Mexico City: 10:32 p.m. Sunday
– Calgary, Canada: 9:32 p.m. Sunday
– San Francisco: 8:32 p.m. Sunday
– Honolulu: 5:32 p.m. Sunday

The website TimeandDate has a handy tool to let you calculate the time for where you live.

People watch as the sun rises on a rocky crest filled with astronomical markers at the megalithic observatory of Kokino in North Macedonia on summer solstice 2020.