United Kingdom is still experiencing the cold and frosty weather, but Spring has officially started as of the 20th of March! On that day, the vernal equinox took place. Wondering what’s that? This astronomical event marks the beginning of Spring in the northern hemisphere. It means that the longer days will start and people can feel the warmth as flowers bloom! And now that the clock is one hour forward, the daylight saving time is here!

What exactly is the vernal equinox?

‘Vernal’ means spring in Latin and equinox means ‘equal night’. Thus, the vernal equinox announces that mornings and nights last for an equal amount of time for the season. On just one day, the sun shines in the direction of the equator on the only day the tilt of the Earth’s axis is perpendicular to the sun’s rays, and that is the equinox. On the other days of the year, days or nights are a little longer- it all depends on where you are in the world. It is one of the reasons why it gets darker during winter days. Also, there’s also the autumnal equinox which takes place in the southern hemisphere in September.

Worldwide Celebrations

Did you know that the Spring equinox is celebrated in many cultures? Dating from ancient years, many festivals are celebrated during this time period, all around the world.

  • Ancient Christianity links the celebration of Easter with the vernal equinox. Given that this equinox means rebirth and renewals, it is associated with resurrection of Jesus.
  • As for the Mayan people, they are known to make some rituals at the stone-stepped pyramid at Chichen Itza, Mexico for the equinox. On that day, they make sure that a ‘snake of sunlight’ goes down the steps of the pyramid, which once witnessed human sacrifices.
  • In Spain, the vernal equinox is the symbolism of the start of the planting season as the ground is firm and crops can grow during the longer daylight hours.
  • In Japan, there’s an official national holiday for the equinox as it is a holy day for people to venerate their ancestors.
  • At Robin Hood Bingo, the start of spring is celebrated in forest of Sherwoodwhere blooming and blissful slot games can be found. The massive collection of games lets you celebrate spring in different ways through distinct backdrops and unique symbols. Moreover, once you launch, you’ll already be in Sherwood Forest’ magical atmosphere through the distinctive layout of the site!
  • In Iran, it is officially New Year on the day of the equinox and it is marked by the festival of No Ruz- houses are freshly decorated with flowers and picnics are made to celebrate the rebirth of trees and nature.
  • In Scotland, it is a tradition to mark the start of spring on the 01st of March with the Whuppity Scoorie Festival.

It’s now time to ditch the sweaters and jackets to make place for flowery clothes until the 21st of June. Picnic baskets, stroll in the woods and fresh fruits? Spring is here, make the most of it!