Arctic Circle

Map of the Arctic, with the Arctic Circle in blue and the July 10 °C mean isotherm in red[timeframe?]

The Arctic Circle is one of the two polar circles and the most northerly of the five major circles of latitude as shown on maps of Earth. It marks the northernmost point at which the centre of the noon sun is just visible on the December solstice and the southernmost point at which the centre of the midnight sun is just visible on the June solstice.[1][2] The region north of this circle is known as the Arctic, and the zone just to the south is called the Northern Temperate Zone.

As seen from the Arctic, the Sun is above the horizon for 24 continuous hours at least once per year (and therefore visible at midnight) and below the horizon for 24 continuous hours at least once per year (and therefore not visible at noon). This is also true in the Antarctic region, south of the equivalent Antarctic Circle.

The position of the Arctic Circle is not fixed; as of 20 June 2019, it runs 66°33′47.7″ north of the Equator.[3] Its latitude depends on the Earth's axial tilt, which fluctuates within a margin of more than 2° over a 41,000-year period, due to tidal forces resulting from the orbit of the Moon.[4] Consequently, the Arctic Circle is currently drifting northwards at a speed of about 15 m (49 ft) per year.


The word arctic comes from the Greek word ἀρκτικός (arktikos: "near the Bear, northern")[5] and that from the word ἄρκτος (arktos: "bear").[6]

Other Languages
Afrikaans: Arktiese Sirkel
azərbaycanca: Şimal Qütb dairəsi
беларуская (тарашкевіца)‎: Паўночны палярны круг
bosanski: Arktički krug
brezhoneg: Kelc'h Arktika
Esperanto: Arkta Cirklo
français: Cercle arctique
한국어: 북극권
Bahasa Indonesia: Lingkar Arktik
Кыргызча: Уюл тегереги
Bahasa Melayu: Garisan Artik
Nederlands: Noordpoolcirkel
日本語: 北極圏
occitan: Cercle artic
Simple English: Arctic Circle
slovenščina: Severni tečajnik
српски / srpski: Северни поларник
srpskohrvatski / српскохрватски: Arktički krug
татарча/tatarça: Tönyaq polär tügäräk
Tiếng Việt: Vòng Bắc Cực
Võro: Nabajuun
吴语: 北極圈
粵語: 北極圈
中文: 北極圈