Animal Crossing seasons, northern and southern hemispheres in New Horizons explained

Animal Crossing: New Horizons uses the Nintendo Switch’s built-in clock to match the flow of the seasons on your island with that of reality. This means that if it’s winter in the real world, it will also be winter in the game.

As the seasons change, you’ll discover new insects and fish on your island, which you can then donate to the museum.

You can now also decide which hemisphere your island is located in (northern or southern) and this decision will have an effect on how the seasons flow on your island.

In this page:

Northern and Southern Hemispheres in Animal Crossing: New Horizons Explained

Animal Crossing: New Horizons is the first game in the series that lets you decide which hemisphere your island is in.

Your choice of hemisphere will determine when you will experience each season based on when these seasons occur in real-world hemispheres.

If you choose the southern hemisphere, for example, you will experience winter during June, July and August, just like the southern hemisphere in the real world.

You choose the hemisphere at the beginning of the game when you choose the island you want to move to.

Seasonal dates for spring, summer, fall and winter in Animal Crossing: New Horizons explained

Regardless of the hemisphere chosen, when do spring, summer, fall, and winter take place in Animal Crossing: New Horizons?

Season North Hemisphere Southern hemisphere
Spring March April May September October November
Summer June July August December January February
Autumn September October November March April May
Winter December January February June July August

Let’s look at each individual season in more detail…

Spring in Animal Crossing: New Horizons explained

If your island is located in the northern hemisphere, spring will extend through March, April and May.

However, if your island is located in the southern hemisphere, spring will arrive during the months of September, October and November.

During the spring months, the trees on your island will begin to bloom, filling the air with flower petals. Throughout this season you will be able to catch a variety of insects and fish that you won’t be able to find outside of spring.

A number of events will also be held throughout the spring, including Bunny Day and spring fishing tournaments. Bunny Day is Animal Crossing’s equivalent of Easter and will give you the chance to collect some rare furniture.

Summer in Animal Crossing: New Horizons explained

Summer on the islands of the northern hemisphere occurs during June, July and August.

In the southern hemisphere, however, summer extends through December, January and February.

The hot summer months will allow your island’s wildlife to truly flourish; The foliage will turn a vibrant green and you can find a new selection of insects, including the mantis. The sea and rivers on your island will also be full of new fish for you to catch.

Like every season, you’ll be able to participate in a variety of events throughout the summer, including bug-catching competitions.

Falling in Animal Crossing: New Horizons explained

Autumn on the islands of the northern hemisphere occurs during September, October and November.

If you located your island in the southern hemisphere, autumn will occur during March, April and May.

The leaves on the trees will slowly tan and mushrooms will appear all over the island during the fall. You can also find a selection of insects and fish that only appear in autumn around your island, which you can sell or donate to the museum.

Autumn is home to a number of holidays, such as the Harvest Festival and Halloween. These events will give you the chance to collect some rare items, whether it’s the pumpkin Jack brings for Halloween or the Franklin turkey for the Harvest Festival.

The Animal Crossing 2.0 and Happy Home Paradise update is here! We can help you with the new additions, including where to find Brewster, Gyroids, new villagers, ordinances, new fences, storage shed, new hairstyles, Froggy Chair, group stretches, and Kapp’n boat tours. Cooking can now be unlocked, so you need to know how to make flour and sugar, as well as how to grow carrots, potatoes and tomatoes. In the meantime, if you’re new to Animal Crossing, our New Horizons tips can help you with the basics. From the beginning, there are fish and insects to catch, flowers and fruits to grow. A long-term goal is to increase your Happy Home Academy score. Finally, you need tools like the new ladder and pole to fully explore.

Winter in Animal Crossing: New Horizons explained

An island in the northern hemisphere will experience winter during the months of December, January and February.

However, if you have decided to live in the southern hemisphere, winter will occur during June, July and August.

As the cold nights approach, snow will fall on your island creating a winter wonderland. The trees will even acquire lights to celebrate the colder season, and if you shake them, you might receive a treat.

In addition to more seasonal fish and bugs to collect, you’ll be able to enjoy a variety of winter activities, like watching the Northern Lights and building snowmen.

Sadly, however, you’ll have to watch those snowmen melt away when spring starts to arrive.

Winter also brings its own events, including Toy Day, when Jingle the black-nosed reindeer will visit your island.

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