Vernal Equinox Signals Start of Hot Dry Season

Get your beach and outdoor activity essentials ready, because the hot dry season is almost here!

Save the date: at exactly 6:29PM Philippine Time on March 20, 2017, the day and night will be of almost equal duration in every location of the Earth. This phenomenon is known as the vernal equinox (or the spring equinox).

The word equinox, derived from Latin words aequi(equal) and nox(night), literally translates to equal night. However, it does not necessarily mean that equinoxes have exactly 12 hours of daylight and 12 hours of nighttime. (Time and Date AS, n.d.)


Equinoxes and solstices symbolize how the sun takes hold of the changing of seasons from all parts of the globe.

What happens during vernal equinox?

The vernal equinox causes the Northern Hemisphere and the Southern Hemisphere to receive approximately equal amounts of the sun’s rays (Earthsky Communications, Inc., 2017). This astronomical event ushers in the beginning of two different seasons in different hemispheres: spring for the Northern Hemisphere and autumn for the Southern Hemisphere.


During the vernal equinox, the sun rises above the horizon at the North Pole – the only time it does in a year. The sun remain visible in the sky, unless it is cloudy, until it sinks again below the horizon on the autumn (fall) equinox on September 21-22.

Since the Philippines sits in the Northern Hemisphere, the sunrise becomes earlier and nightfall comes later. It is also the time when plants thrive faster, while the winds grow calmer and the temperature start to warm up. This signifies the transition from the cool dry season to the much-awaited hot dry months through later June. Then, the country will experience longer days and shorter nights.

In these regions, the vernal equinox signals the start of the hot dry season, which many travelers and vacation-goers look forward to. For many, this is the best time to travel to a popular beach, go camping, or visit water activities locations in the Philippines.

Now that is something to keep in mind when scheduling your out of town trips so you can enjoy this season to the fullest. Download the WeatherPhilippines mobile application and weather-check the areas before visiting your favorite destination. It pays to stay ahead of the weather by being #WeatherWiser!


EarthSky Communications Inc. (2017). All you need to know: March Equinox. Retrieved March 15, 2017 from

Time and Date AS (n.d.). March Equinox – Equal Day and Night, Nearly. Retrieved March 14, 2017 from


Created by the WPF Meteorology Team

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