Where on earth should we go for the millennium? Science provides the answer.

According to an article in the Geographical Journal, scientists have now cracked a problem that has been a source of great dispute for the past year: over which inhabited place on earth will the sun first rise on the new millennium? And the answer is Hakepa Hill on Pitt Island, east of New Zealand. But make sure you are there before forty seconds after three minutes past four in the afternoon on 31 December 1999 GMT.

Of course, if you are really serious about it, you will instead be on the uninhabited Chatham Islands, farther to the south east, where dawn will break three minutes earlier. Unless you prefer to go one better still by hiring a boat and anchoring it just north of Scott Island in the Belleny Basin.

Several islands in the South Pacific are offering millennium tours, promising visitors that they will be the first to see the millennium. The Tongans were reported to be considering the introduction of daylight saving time, just to get their millennium in earlier, while Kiribati had reportedly asked for the international dateline to be nudged over a bit, to make them first instead of last.

Such measures, however, have been roundly denounced by the Geographical Journal as having no "level of credibility in the international navigation community".

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