Today we can officially say goodbye to summer 2015 (yes, it’s time to get the jumpers out!) as today marks the first day of autumn with the autumnal equinox which usually falls on 22nd or 23rd September every year. As the planet actually takes 365.25 days to orbit the sun, the equinox will occasionally fall on 24th September.

However, we aren’t likely to see this as the next time it falls on the 24th will be in 2303! The equinox occurs when the equator passes the centre of the sun and the North and South poles are not tilted towards or away from the sun but are aligned to give the same amount of daylight in both the Earth’s hemispheres.

So what does this mean? It means that people living at the South Pole will be experiencing the first sighting of sunlight in six months as it marks the first day of spring for them! On the other side, people living at the North Pole will be plunged into six months of darkness…

Hours of daylight through the year

Hours of daylight through the year

Although some of you may not have heard of the Autumn Equinox, it is celebrated all over the world with Druids meeting at Stonehenge to celebrate with music whilst in China, a harvest festival takes place. In Korea, some people mark the occasion with a type of Thanksgiving. Wherever you are, enjoy your first day of autumn/spring this year!

Need to brush up on your geography skills? Why not purchase one of our world wall maps.