All around the world, people are celebrating the first equinox of the year in the northern hemisphere. The amount of sunlight in the northern and southern hemispheres is approximately equal as the Sun is positioned above the equator. This traditionally marks the start of spring, where daylight grows longer and the nights grow shorter.

People celebrate this time of year in many different ways. Many cultures have traditional ceremonies to mark the occasion, from festivals to sporting events. Others are just happy to think that winter is over, and spring is on its way.

Here are some of the best images of the equinox from around the world.

Iztapalapa, Mexico

People raise their hands towards the sun
People raise their arms to 'charge themselves with positive energy' during their visit to the Cerro de la Estrella archaeological site in the Iztapalapa, Mexico City, Mexico, to mark the spring equinox in Mexico. Photo taken on 20 March 2023. Photo by Gerardo Vieyra/NurPhoto/Getty Images

London, United Kingdom

People dressed in white holding flowers
Members of the Druid Order take part in a celebration of the spring equinox during a ceremony at Tower Hill on 20 March 2023 in London, United Kingdom. Every year the Druid Order marks the first day of spring, or vernal equinox, with the celebration known as Alban Eilir - the time of balance. Photo by Dan Kitwood/Getty Images

Madrid, Spain

Sunset behind tall buildings
The sun sets behind the skyscrapers of the 'Four Towers Business Area', Madrid, Spain, on 20 March 2023. Photo by Marcos del Mazo/LightRocket/Getty Images

La Libertad, El Salvador

People blowing into large shells
An indigenous Nahua Pipil couple blows snail shells during the celebration of the spring equinox, at the archaeological site of San Andrés, Zapotitan Valley on 19 March 2023 in La Libertad, El Salvador. Photo by Aphotographia/Getty Images

Washington DC, USA

People stood underneath Cherry blossoms
Framed by blooming cherry blossoms, Mayowa Amosu (centre) dances with friends to celebrate the first day of Spring, 20 March 2023, Washington DC, USA. Photo by Matt McClain/The Washington Post/Getty Images

Bishkek, Kyrgyzstan

falcon rests on man's arm
A Kyrgyz hunter launches his falcon during the traditional Salburun hunting festival in Bishkek, Kyrgyzstan, 20 March 2023. The festival takes place in Bishkek on the eve of the Nooruz holiday. Nooruz, also called Novruz, marks the first day of spring, and is celebrated on the day of the astronomical vernal equinox. Photo by Igor Kovalenko/EPA-EFE/Shutterstock

Teotihuacan, Mexico

balloons rising over hill
A man takes pictures of hot air balloons flying over the Pyramid of the Sun in Teotihuacan, Mexico, during the spring equinox celebration on 20 March 2023. Photo by Claudio Cruz/AFP/Getty Images

More images from BBC Science Focus:

Zaragoza, Spain

sun shining through water
A view of the sunset through a fountain in Zaragoza city, Spain, on 20 March 2023, marking the first day of spring in the northern hemisphere. Photo by Javier Belver/EPA-EFE/Shutterstock

New York, USA

Sun rises over Skyscrapers
The Sun rises over the skyscraper One Vanderbilt, as seen from the observation deck at Hudson Yards, on the first day of spring on 20 March 2023, New York City, USA. Photo by Alexi Rosenfeld/Getty Images

Handan, China

children painting chicken eggs
Children balance chicken eggs that they have painted to mark Chunfen (the spring equinox) on March 20, 2023 in Zixing, Hunan Province, China. Photo by Li Ke/VCG/Getty Images

Stonehenge, United Kingdom

two women stood in front of Stonehenge
Druids, Pagans and revellers gather at Stonehenge to mark the spring equinox on 21 March 2023 in Amesbury, United Kingdom. Around 300 people gathered at the ancient stone monument to observe the vernal equinox and celebrate the beginning of spring. Photo by Rufus Cox/Getty Images


James CutmorePicture Editor, BBC Science Focus

James Cutmore is the picture editor of BBC Science Focus Magazine, researching striking images for the magazine and on the website. He is also has a passion for taking his own photographs