What is the Vernal Equinox: Start Spring, Meaning, Celebration, Horoscope
What is the Vernal Equinox: Start Spring, Meaning, Celebration, Horoscope

When you wake up on the morning of March 20, you might find yourself feeling a little bit lighter. A certain spring in your step, so to speak. With its promise of the earth blossoming, the vernal equinox has often been linked with spiritual significance.

When is the spring equinox?

It actually changes but it’s always around the end of March — either the 19th, 20th or 21st.

In 2021, the spring equinox occurs on Saturday, March 20. This event marks the astronomical first day of spring in the Northern Hemisphere.

This year, the March equinox happens on Saturday, March 20, at 5:37 A.M. EDT. In the Northern Hemisphere, this date marks the start of the spring season.

In the Southern Hemisphere, the March equinox marks the start of autumn, while the September equinox marks the start of spring.

So for Argentinians, South Africans and Australians, among others, this is a time to look forward to cooler weather and the joys of autumn.

For people who reside near the equator (in places such as Quito, Ecuador, or Singapore), none of this is a big deal. They get roughly 12 hours of daylight and nighttime year round.


Year Spring Equinox (Northern Hemisphere)
2021 Saturday, March 20, at 5:37 A.M. EDT
2022 Sunday, March 20, at 11:33 A.M. EDT
2023 Monday, March 20, at 5:24 P.M. EDT
2024 Tuesday, March 19, at 11:06 P.M. EDT

What is the spring equinox?

The spring equinox is the first day of spring. In the Northern Hemisphere, the March equinox (aka spring equinox or vernal equinox) occurs when the Sun crosses the equator line, heading north. This event marks the start of spring in the northern half of the globe. After this date, the Northern Hemisphere begins to be tilted more toward the Sun, resulting in increasing daylight hours and warming temperatures. (In the Southern Hemisphere, it’s the opposite: the March equinox marks the start of autumn, as the Southern Hemisphere begins to be tilted away from the Sun.)

It’s also a day where there is almost 12 hours of light and 12 hours of darkness because the sun is passing directly over the equator. It’s also called the vernal equinox.

Since daytime is measured from the time any part of the sun is visible over the horizon to when the last part of the sun has set, there's actually a little bit more than 12 hours of light.

What does the word equinox mean, exactly?

illustration showing a tree in a field where half is in sunlight and half is in nighttime

The word equinox comes from the Latin words for “equal night”—aequus (equal) and nox (night).

On the equinox, the length of day and night is nearly equal in all parts of the world.

With the equinox, enjoy the increasing sunlight hours, with earlier dawns and later sunsets.

What happen on the March Equinox?

On the March equinox, the Sun crosses the celestial equator going south to north. It’s called the “celestial equator” because it’s an imaginary line in the sky above the Earth’s equator.

If you were standing on the equator, the Sun would pass directly overhead on its way north.

According to Almnax, Equinoxes are the only two times a year that the Sun rises due east and sets due west for all of us on Earth!

While the Sun passes overhead, the tilt of the Earth is zero relative to the Sun, which means that Earth’s axis neither points toward nor away from the Sun. (Note, however, that the Earth never orbits upright, but is always tilted on its axis by about 23.5 degrees.)

After the spring equinox, the Northern Hemisphere tilts toward the Sun. Although in most locations (the North Pole and Equator being exceptions) the amount of daylight had been increasing each day after the winter solstice, after the spring equinox, many places will experience more daylight than darkness in each 24-hour day. The amount of daylight each day will continue to increase until the summer solstice in June, in which the longest period of daylight occurs.

The old equinox egg trick

colourful eggs

There is an old story that says that on the spring equinox, you can stand a raw egg upright instead of on its side.

Why not try it and see if it's true?

Top 4 things you can do to celebrate the spring equinox

hands holding a seedling

Image by Myriams-Fotos from Pixabay

  1. Go for a walk and see if you find signs of spring! Look for buds on the trees and flowers starting to poke through the ground. Are the birds flying back yet?
  2. If you have a front yard or backyard, spring is the perfect time to clean up any trash that has made its way into the yard. If you don’t have a yard, maybe you can hit the sidewalk or your local park.
  3. If you don’t see any flowers coming up, you can create your own! Draw some with crayons or markers. Cut them out of coloured paper. Make some out of plasticine. Be creative!
  4. Since spring is finally coming, the equinox is a great time to plant something. Get a grown-up to help you plant seeds in a pot of soil. Water it and make sure it gets lots of sun!

Why does spring equinox happen?

Accoding to CNN, The Earth rotates along an imaginary line that runs from North Pole to South Pole. It's called the axis, and this rotation is what gives us day and night.

However, the axis tilts at 23.5 degrees. That positions one hemisphere of the planet to get more sunlight than the other for half of the year's orbit around the sun. This discrepancy in sunlight is what triggers the seasons.

The effect is at its maximum in late June and late December. Those are the solstices, and they have the most extreme differences between day and night, especially near the poles. (That's why it stays dark for so long each day during the winter in places such as Scandinavia and Alaska.)

But since the winter solstice three months ago in December, you've noticed that our days have been getting longer in the Northern Hemisphere and the nights shorter. And now here we are at the spring equinox! Going forward, the Northern Hemisphere will be more exposed to the sun than the Southern Hemisphere.

That's why it gets increasingly hot as we head toward the summer solstice in June.

Spring 2021 horoscopes with your Zodiac Sign

When it comes to astrology, the vernal equinox also holds a deep significance: It’s the start of the astrological new year, which begins when the sun enters Aries (the first sign of the zodiac) in the Northern Hemisphere. From there, the sun starts a new journey around the 12 signs.


The months of June and October hold really big decision-making opportunities for you, but it’s critical that you face into your choices head-on.

Aries, you've been giving a lot of energy to relationships and friendships. Now, it’s time to shift the focus back onto you. Do something nice for yourself during the vernal equinox. Treat yourself to a gift like a bouquet of seasonal flowers, a DIY manicure, a new candle, or something sparkly to celebrate the most important person in your life: you. After all, you deserve to spoil yourself once in a while. Now's the time.


Breathe in, breathe out. During the spring equinox, focus on that mind-body connection. Once you decompress, you might find yourself more aware and in tune with your life (and hey, maybe with the universe, too). This will allow the energies of the new season to stimulate you, helping you feel as though you're having your own personal spring awakening.

Maybe you’re keen to travel, to up sticks and move, to see the world, to meet new people, to pursue a fresh romance, to change careers.

It’s all risky, but you’ve realised that life IS a risk. Even staying put and never making changes is a risk in itself.

And you’re ready to roll the dice and make as bold leap. April is your month for success. Play to win!


Gemini, you team player, you. You face a time of collaboration in the days ahead. Resist the urge to take charge. Instead, take a step back and try to work alongside your colleagues, friends and family. Let everyone have a say now, and be especially open to their views. But in order to remember what your views are, start a journaling habit that will carry you through the rest of the year.

Geminis, please know that you whatever you’re mourning or regretting was just meant to be how it was.

You’re still processing it, and that’s okay, but don’t STARE at the past.

Let Spring bring new ideas and energy to you. Let it revive your spirits, encourage you to get outside and meet people again, schedule things to look forward to.


The weather is getting warmer—but for some reason, you can't make time to go outside and bask in the sun. You're in full-on work mode, and weirdly, you love it. As you're swept up in this productive energy, try to only commit to projects that you feel deeply passionately about. Finally, take a break to enjoy things going on in your orbit. Translation? Work hard, but not too hard. We won't tell your boss.

Take the Spring to create a new kind of lifestyle- marrying the best bit of your ~lockdown life~ with resurrections from your old world.

You are designing a new look for your daily life, and you won’t be hurried into anything.


2021 is a major turning point for you, Leo, a kind of ~bridge~ between the past and the future, and all of the seeds you plant this year will shape how fast and well your garden grows in the future!

You’re feeling more wanderlust than usual, due to the equinox adding fuel to your fiery sentiments. Traveling is more than a bit complicated at the moment—but that doesn’t mean the world can’t come to you. Thanks to your flair for ambiance (and throwing parties), you can set the mood at home. Craft the ultimate staycation. We’re thinking of delicious fruity cocktails (or mocktails) with edible petals for happy hour.


For Virgos, this season brings one primary joy: Spring cleaning. Now's your chance to emulate your favorite organization shows (we know you watch 'em) and declutter your living space. But since this is a season of cycles, don’t throw your stuff away. Instead, recycle everything that’s salvageable by hosting a yard sale, or donating your old items to charity. Letting go of possessions that you no longer need or that have passed their prime will benefit you now. It’ll make you feel energetically lighter as the year begins again.

The material things in life that make up the ~stuff~ of daily life.

So, investments, lifestyle changes, pensions, home improvements (or moves), retraining, career progress and promotion are ALL on the cards for 2021.

This is where your precious time and attention should be spent because you’re on a roll now.

Use this momentum to get ahead and feel safe and strong in your position.


Love is in the air this spring. Before running toward your romantic sentiments at a full throttle pace, think about what you truly want out of your relationships. Once you come to terms with your emotional needs and desires, then you can be a better partner and fight for who or what you love. The same goes for allrelationships this spring, Libra. Take this time to think deeply about yourself, and others, by asking the deep and important questions about values, experiences, and dreams for the future. From there, you'll be able to build toward a shared future.

The months of July and November are well starred for this powerful new beginning in your life, which will renew your appreciation for life itself!

2021 will restore your emotional equilibrium, and make you feel good about yourself and life in general again.


Self-care isn't a perk—it's a necessity for you during the spring equinox. You’ve been working hard all winter long and are in need of a break. Make "rest and relaxation" the theme of your spring. But disconnecting from the world will require discipline. Turn off that cell phone. Be present in your life. Our advice? Take a bath. Not only will it relax your mind and body—it'll keep the world at bay (briefly).

People, places and wholesome hobbies or talents that used to make us laugh and feel good naturally.

Take yourself on a ‘Grand Tour’ (physically or digitally) of your past haunts and social circles and old jobs and past loves.


Get sentimental, Sagittarius. Shepherd your natural sparks of enthusiasm toward making someone else's day, like a friend or a romantic partner. This spring, get creative in how how you express your heartfelt sentiments. Write handwritten postcards, send flowers, or have candlelight dinners with your significant other.

Make 2021 the year to identify and blast through your biggest (perceived) obstacles, the ones you think about at 4am.

You can handle ALL of it, and none of it is going to be as hard or troubling as you fear.

Use this year to clear the decks of old rubbish, and address your anxieties or worries.

You can tackle it all, and you will feel like a million dollars in the process.


Time to stock up on some interior decorating books, Capricorn. During the spring equinox, focus on fine-tuning your personal sanctuary. Don’t go overboard and paint the walls bright green. Instead, think small: Swap out throw pillows, or find some new artwork you love. Better vibe, better you.

April, August and December are all windows of opportunity, so you have some time to plan!


In spring, the world opens up. That means it's time for you to come out of your hibernation shell, too. Reach out to friends and family that you haven’t spoken to in a while. Laugh, reflect, and get nostalgic. Picking up the phone (or texting or Zooming) to share old stories will allow you to remember the person you were, and help you become the person you want to be.

2021 sees a ~new you~ emerging though, one who enjoys collaboration, partnership and socialising more than ever before.

Surprises await you, too, because you’re yet to experience how much further, faster, you can get with the input and support of others.

You’re about to find out how well liked and respected you always were, and it’s going to feel great!


Pisces, your Sun, Mercury, and Venus are moving into the second house this month—which signifies finances. So, use the spring equinox to do some spring cleaning...for your bank account. Pay more attention to your spending habits, whether that means creating a budget or cutting back in certain sectors. You may want to repeat this practice during the fall equinox in September.

Adjust the balance of your time and energy investments to match up with things and people that are inspiring and fulfilling and positive.

You are so kind and giving that you can end up being dragged into supporting other people’s priorities and life. Stop this.

Put yourself first for a change, and get busy doing stuff that makes you happy. Life is too short to spend doing for others all the time.



  • For glad Spring has begun,

    And to the ardent sun

    The earth, long time so bleak,

    Turns a frost-bitten cheek.

    - Celia Thaxter, American poet (1835–94)

  • Spring-time sweet!

    The whole Earth smiles, thy coming to greet.

    - Unknown

  • Never yet was a springtime,

    Late though lingered the snow,

    That the sap stirred not at the whisper

    Of the southwind, sweet and low.

    - Margaret Elizabeth Sangster, American writer (1838–1912)


  • Spring is nature’s way of saying, “Let’s party!”

    - Robin Williams (1951–2014)


  • Bluebirds are a sign of spring; warm weather and gentle south breezes they bring.
  • One swallow does not make a spring.
  • In spring, no one thinks of the snow that fell last year.
  • When the dandelions bloom early in spring, there will be a short season. When they bloom late, expect a dry summer.
  • Don’t say that spring has come until you can put your foot on nine daisies.
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