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How to Use: Seasons Calculator

The Seasons Calculator shows when spring, summer, fall (autumn), and winter begins around the world.

Getting Started

How to use the Seasons Calculator

  • Open the Seasons Calculator and enter a location into the search field near the top of the page.
  • Use the drop-down menu above the table to select a different year range.

What does the Seasons Calculator show?

The table shows the exact moments of the two equinoxes and the two solstices that happen every year. These mark the beginning of the seasons around the world according to the astronomical definition:

  • March equinox: beginning of spring in the Northern Hemisphere, beginning of fall (autumn) in the Southern Hemisphere.
  • June solstice: beginning of summer in the Northern Hemisphere, beginning of winter in the Southern Hemisphere.
  • September equinox: beginning of fall (autumn) in the Northern Hemisphere, beginning of spring in the Southern Hemisphere.
  • December solstice: beginning of winter in the Northern Hemisphere, beginning of summer in the Southern Hemisphere.

According to the meteorological definition, the seasons start on the first day of the month with the equinox or solstice: March 1, June 1, September 1, and December 1.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)

What exactly happens at the specified times?

The table shows the exact moments of the equinoxes and solstices, which mark the beginning of the seasons, down to the minute.

  • The equinoxes are the instances when the Sun is directly overhead the Equator, crossing it from south to north in March and from north to south in September.
  • At the solstices, the Sun is farthest away from the Equator. It reaches its northernmost position (the Tropic of Cancer) in June and its southernmost position (the Tropic of Capricorn) in December.

Why do I have to enter a location?

The moments of the equinoxes and solstices are defined solely by the Earth's position in relation to the Sun, so they happen at the same time everywhere on Earth. However, since we use time zones, the local time for each season varies from one location to the next.

Does it account for Daylight Saving Time (DST)?

Yes, all times are automatically adjusted for DST clock changes in the location you enter.

Why did the seasons happen some days earlier in the past?

They didn't. Astronomically, both equinoxes and solstices happened around the same time of the year as today. However, the world was still using a different calendar system back then: the Julian calendar. So while the seasons occurred at about the same time as today, the date numbers changed when today's Gregorian calendar was introduced, causing a number of days to be skipped.

The Seasons Calculator takes this into account, showing dates based on the Julian calendar for years when that calendar system was still in use.

How accurate are your calculations?

For years between 1700 and 2149, the accuracy of the times calculated should be within 1 minute of the real time. For years before 1700, accuracy will be less as we calculate back in time.

The city search lists several places with the same name. Which is the one I'm looking for?

When you type the location into the search field and it suggests several places by the same name, first have a look at the country flag and the description in parentheses to identify the city you are looking for. If it is still unclear, click on one of the locations and check the geographical position on the map or click on the Time/General tab and check the longitude/latitude information shown near the top of the page.

Why isn't my town included?

Our database of locations includes thousands of cities worldwide, and we now offer an additional 6 million places via the GeoNames database. If you still don't find your town, please let us know, and we will consider adding it.

The time has the wrong format. How do I change between the 24-hour and AM/PM clock?

Our system supports both 24-hour and 12-hour (am/pm) clock formats. To change the format, please go to My Units and make a selection in the Time Format drop-down, and click Save Settings.

How do seasons work?

You will find an explanation of the seasons here.

How does your algorithm work? Can you help me program my own?

We are a small team with a very extensive website to manage, so unfortunately, we do not have the capacity to share detailed information about our algorithms or provide programming help.

Where can I find more information about the site and its services?

The General FAQ Page answers your questions about timeanddate.com, our services, site-wide settings and customization options, as well as advertising and copyright policies.

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