Whether by accident or design, Elizabeth Bay House was built in direct alignment with the sun’s rays on the Winter Solstice, the shortest day of the year, creating a magnificent display as the sun rises over the horizon.

This year's dawn breakfast event was particularly spectacular, with the clouds parting to reveal the sun shining directly in through the front door and along the hallway.

Here are some photos taken at this very special annual event, where visitors had the phenomenon explained in a talk by Andrew Jacob, curator of astronomy at Sydney Observatory.

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  • Looking down hallway and out of open front door with sunrise light streaming directly in.
  • Table laid out for early morning breakfast.
  • Photo taken from out the back of the house, with the sun shining through the open front door.