How long does an eclipse last? The length of time the eclipsing sun will 'draw' a path across the globe will also vary from eclipse to eclipse. So every eclipse will last a different length of time, and the period of totality – when the sun is totally covered by the Moon – will vary. Please bear in mind that totality never lasts more than a few minutes, so you need to be ready at the big moment, not 'just popping off the loo' or anything like that! The brevity of total eclipses is part of their unique appeal – truly a rare moment. But it also emphasises a key point that any 'eclipse holiday' involves grabbing the chance to explore the area you're in on the days before and after the cosmic event.
Just to give you some figures, the total eclipse due on July 16, 2186 will be the longest for the next 1,000 years - with a maximum duration of 7 minutes 29 seconds of 'totality'. The briefest total eclipse of this current millennium happened in February 2003, with a maximum of just 9 seconds of totality! For more information on eclipses generally, including the maximum duration of any specific eclipse coming up, check this NASA eclipse page here