Vfyw-contest-2

A reader writes:

Not sure about this, but I think this is Honolulu, Hawaii - either toward the Moilili/University side where it's sparser, or toward the Ala Moana Park side ... sort of where Waikiki peters out?  Clouds are right, it's the right place for the setting of the winter sun, and the buildings are all relatively early postwar.

Another writes:

I'm an architect, and the view from this particular window looks just like my stay several years ago in a Singapore Public Housing Estate. Judging by the location of the setting sun, I'd say Choa Chu Kang district.

Another:

I know it's at the beach, and since I'm hoping January is a hint, I'm going to say somewhere warmer and where people flock for the summer. I have a 50/50 shot of getting sunrise or sunset right, so I'm going with sunrise, because the sky seems too orange to me. I guess my guess will be Myrtle Beach, South Carolina.

Another:

Looks to me like Tehran, Iran - north side of Elahiyeh facing south.

Another:

I'm gonna take a leap of faith and assume your reader is more likely to catch the sunset than the sunrise, so that means we're looking at a western-facing beach.  Obviously tropical or subtropical, as indicated by the palm trees.  Architecture and surroundings are all pretty tidy-looking, ruling out most developing-country beach cities, which tend to have a fair share of grit.  Beach looks pretty straight and wide-open, meaning it's not in a bay.  Shall we say Naples, Florida?

Another:

Looks like Communist architecture. Sofia, Bulgaria?

Another:

This one is too hard. If it is the evening, it could be Toronto, facing South to Lake Ontario. They have a lot of those Soviet-looking residential buildings, but the waterfront doesn't look right.  It could be Odessa, Ukraine. What the hell, Toronto.  No, Odessa.  Odessa is my guess.

Another:

High rise concrete block apartments, looks like Communist architecture, so somewhere in the former Warsaw Pact or Soviet Union.  I'm going to go out on a limb and say Tallinn, Estonia.

Another:

St. Petersburg, FL?

Another:

The construction looks cheap and dated, but there is a beach. Manilla, Philippines?

Another:

Decidedly North American, but I'm guessing not US. The bland color of the lake behind the buildings seems oddly Canadian to me. I'm guessing Toronto.

Another:

Buildings look South American, and for some reason that feels like a sunset over the ocean.  Let's go Valparaiso, Chile.

Another:

That definitely looks European to me, and not Western.  I see water, so that should narrow it down a bit.  I’m torn between Croatia (perhaps Split?) and something a little more mainstream, such as Athens.  Final Answer: Athens.

Another:

Spain, Canary Islands, Tenerife, Santa Cruz de Tenerife?

Another:

This is hilarious. Back in the pre-contest days, I would flippantly zero my eyes in on the new image, avoid the caption and pretty instantly come up with a winning guess. I figured I was at least partially right 70-80% of the time. Let's say I graded on a curve and felt pretty smug about my VFYW-dar.

Now for the humiliating part. I initially had no impulse about this city. Too many clouds for the Persian Gulf. Not the usual US architecture. Vaguely east-Asian? Sunrise or sunset? Should be an easy guess if you've been there. I studied it some more. The main body of water (what looks like the ocean), the inland channel or river to the left, the low-slung apartment architecture, the clouds ... WTF: Miami Beach, FL.

Close:

Fort Lauderdale, Florida, 7.15 am, on January 12, 2010. 

Seventeen of the nearly 600 entries guessed correctly, but the first to do so came from reader E.G., who wrote:

As a frequent visitor to the east coast of Florida, I would have to guess the view of aging mid-rise condos looking out to the sea was in Ft. Lauderdale, Florida. I am also inclined to believe this is Ft. Lauderdale since you probably have a large number of gay readers from that area.

It was a tough one, we know. We love this contest. Every Saturday?

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