What are The 4 Seasons in Spanish: An Easy Guide for Language Learners

Multiple leaves changing colors hanging from a rope to illustrate the seasons in Spanish and also autumn

Hola Language learners,

Are you trying to add the seasons of the year to your Spanish vocabulary?

This practice can be helpful, especially when planning trips or practicing basic conversations with your Spanish coach. 

In fact:

Most of the Spanish-speaking world talks about four seasons of the year (las estaciones del año), just as in English, seasons such as:

  • El invierno — winter
  • La primavera — spring
  • El verano — summer 
  • El otoño — autumn or fall

Intro to Seasons in Spanish

green plant getting sun-kissed and illustrating spring and also the seasons in spanish

As in English, seasons tend to begin and end in a formal on the year’s longest and shortest days.

 Why?

Summer begins around June 21 in the Northern Hemisphere but around Dec. 21 in the Southern Hemisphere.

Not only that:

In a popular sense, summer can also be thought of as including the hottest months.

How so?

Well typically June, July, and August in the Northern Hemisphere, but December, January, and February in the Southern Hemisphere in much of the tropics, 

Just two seasons are recognized locally:

  • La estación lluviosa — rainy season or wet season, which can also be called “Invierno”
  • La estación seca — dry season, which can also be called “Verano”

Defined Articles When Using Seasons in Spanish

As you already know, definite articles must match in gender (masculine or feminine) and number (singular or plural) with the noun that they describe.

The good news?

You can use this same pattern when talking about the seasons. Most seasons are considered masculine (el verano, el otoño, and el invierno) with the exception of spring (la primavera).

Here’s the deal:

Use definite articles when you are talking about specific characteristics of a season or referring to a particular time frame.

Such as:

  • Summer is the best time for a beach vacation. (El verano es el mejor tiempo para unas vacaciones en la playa)
  • Fall has such beautiful colors in nature. (El otoño tiene colores tan bellos en la naturaleza)
  • I travel to Barcelona during the winter. (Viajo a Barcelona durante el invierno)
  • Spring is the time for flowers. (La primavera es la epoca de las flores)

When You Don’t Need to Worry about Defined Articles For Seasons in Spanish

When talking about seasons in Spanish, there are certain situations in which you might not use definite articles.

When making general statements that follow the prepositions of (de), in (en), or a form of to be (ser), you can omit the definite article before the seasons.

In Fact:

The definite article can be omitted (but doesn’t have to be) after forms of the verb ser and the prepositions en and de, for example:

  • En verano debemos cuidar el pelo con productos diseñados para esta estación. (In summer we should take care of our hair with products designed for this season.)
  • Los colores de primavera son muy llamativos y bonitos. (Spring colors are very intense and pretty.)
  • Ya era otoño en Colombia. (It was already autumn in Colombia.)

Etymology of the Seasons’ Names

a beautiful picture of a sunset in the colorado mountains illustrating the winter and the seasons in spanish

Did you know that the main names of the four seasons in Spanish all come from Latin?

  • Invierno comes from hibernum, which is also the root of “hibernate.”
  • Primavera is related to primera (first) and ver (to see), because it is the time of year when it is possible to first see new life.
  • Verano comes from veranum, which in Latin could refer to either spring or summer.
  • Otoño comes from autumnus, the root of the English “autumn.”

Now you know where all these seasons in Spanish names come from. Now let’s put them in context.

Using Primavera (Spring) in Conversation

a small green plant coming to life and illustrating a rebirth or spring for the topic of seasons in spanish

For many peeps, spring or primavera [pree-muh-veh-ruh] is a favorite season.

In Spanish-speaking countries, primavera is also a beautiful time of year.

Think about it:

Spring signifies new life.

Primavera significa vida nueva.

Depending on where you live, spring (primavera) can arrive at different times of the year.

In the Northern Hemisphere, primavera arrives in the following months:

  • March = marzo [mahr-so]
  • April = abril [ah-breel]
  • May = mayo [mah-yoh]

In the Southern Hemisphere, you can encounter primavera during these months:

  • September = septiembre [sehp-tyehm-breh]
  • October = octubre [ohk-too-breh]
  • November = noviembre [noh-byehm-breh]

Using Verano (Summer) in Conversation

Colorful flowers in the wilderness illustrating the arrival of summer in multiple parts of the world and seasons in spanish

For many, summer means time for relaxation. Summer, or verano [beh-rah-noh] in Spanish, is a great time to plan a vacation or getaway.

Case in point:

You might hear, or make, a statement like:

The sun shines brightest during summer. (El sol brilla más fuerte en verano.)

Just like spring (primavera), summer (verano) occurs in different months depending on your location.

By the way:

For those who live in the Northern Hemisphere, summer occurs during these months:

  • June = junio [hoo-nyoh]
  • July = julio [hoo-lyoh]
  • August = agosto [ah-gohs-toh]

In the Southern Hemisphere, the summer months are as follows:

  • December = diciembre [dee-syehm-breh]
  • January = enero [eh-neh-roh]
  • February = febrero [feh-breh-roh]

Using Otoño (Autumn) in Conversation

Autumn in the forest with multiple trees lined up showing off changing colors and illustrating seasons in Spanish

The summer months are quickly followed by autumn. Autumn, or otoño [oh-toh-nyoh], is a time normally characterized by cooler temperatures and beautiful scenery.

The good news?

Autumn in many communities is a time of harvest. (Otoño en muchas comunidades es un tiempo de cosecha.)

In the Northern Hemisphere, you can find otoño during these months:

  • September = septiembre [sehp-tyehm-breh]
  • October = octubre [ohk-too-breh]
  • November = noviembre [noh-byehm-breh]

Keep in mind:

In the Southern Hemisphere, otoño comes a bit earlier during the following months:

  • March = marzo [mahr-so]
  • April = abril [ah-breel]
  • May = mayo [mah-yoh]

Using Invierno (Winter) in Conversation

Snowy mountains in the rockies with a beautiful landscape displaying the arrival of winter and seasons in spanish

Last but not least in our study of seasons, we find winter. Winter, or invierno [een-byehr-noh], can be a cold season for many, but for some, it brings the beauty of snow.

Practice this winter weather sentence:

Winter often brings colder temperatures. (El invierno normalmente trae temperaturas más frias.)

Whether or not snow is in the forecast, the Northern Hemisphere experiences invierno during the following months:

  • December = diciembre [dee-syehm-breh]
  • January = enero [eh-neh-roh]
  • February = febrero [feh-breh-roh]

Keep in mind in the Southern Hemisphere, invierno comes during these months:

  • June = junio [hoo-nyoh]
  • July = julio [hoo-lyoh]
  • August = agosto [ah-gohs-toh]

Using Seasons in Spanish Statements in Daily Conversation

Below are typical phrases, statements, and questions used by Spanish speakers in everyday situations to discuss seasons in Spanish. 

In fact:

They may offer insight into how you can incorporate them into your own conversations.

  • Cada primavera, las más de 200 especies de plantas con flores que hay en el parque crean una brillante exhibición. (Every spring, the 200-plus species of flowered plants in the park create a brilliant display.)
  • El otoño es un buen momento para visitar México. (Fall is a good time to visit Mexico.)
  • La estación lluviosa dura en el interior del país desde mayo hasta octubre. (The rainy season lasts in the country’s interior from May until October.)
  • ¿Cuánto costará esquiar en Chile este invierno? (How much will it cost to ski in Chile this winter?)
  • Los días de verano son largos. (Summer days are long.)
  • El riesgo de incendios forestales en la estación seca aumentará este año. (The risk of forest fires in the dry season will increase this year.)
  • Fue un verano inolvidable. (It was an unforgettable summer.)
  • En Japón, el otoño es la estación más agradable del año. (In Japan, autumn is the most pleasant season of the year.)

Final Words On The Four Seasons In Spanish

young woman looking refreshed and happy to receive the arrival of autumn and the seasons in spanish

There you have it amigos:

Being able to understand and talk about the seasons in Spanish is a great way to engage with others and use your Spanish-speaking skills. 

Not only that:

Conversing with a native Spanish speaker who can help you build your skills can offer the most help on your language-learning journey.

If you want to converse with a native Spanish speaker about the beauty of Primavera or the cold of Invierno, you can book a Spanish lesson online with me here.

By the way:

Do you want to feel at home in over 21 countries and speak Spanish fluently?

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Meet Daniel

Since he was a child, Daniel has been passionate about Social Dynamics. Learn how Daniel got his start as a Language Coach, and why he decided to start this language blog. If you want to send Daniel a quick message, then visit his contact page here.

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