How to swim in Animal Crossing: New Horizons

How to swim in Animal Crossing: New Horizons

Since the 2020 free summer update, Animal Crossing: New Horizons fans can explore the vast ocean, search for pearls, and new sea creatures to trade and collect! Read on to find out how!

Why should you start swimming in Animal Crossing?

There are numerous ways to collect bells and discover new insects and plants on Animal Crossing: New Horizons. However we’re always on the lookout for new creatures and now with swimming and diving being added to the repertoire, aside from just splashing around in the ocean, you can also find and collect a host of new sea creatures. These creatures might prove to be invaluable to you as they are currently the only way you can earn the rare Pearls on Animal Crossing. You’ll need these Pearls in order to craft the new mermaid-themed DIY recipes which you might be able to squeeze out of Pascal the otter in exchange for some exotic sea creatures.

How do you swim in Animal Crossing? 

In order to enjoy the swimming feature in Animal Crossing: New Horizons, there are a few simple steps to follow. Here are they:

Get a wetsuit

As in real life, there are numerous places you can get your wetsuit on Animal Crossing but we recommend you go directly to Nook’s Cranny and look inside the cabinet. It is the easiest and fastest way of getting a wetsuit but with only one variation per day available to purchase from the Nook nephews, be sure to find the one that best suits you.

A wetsuit will set you back around 3,000 bells but you also have the option of using your Nook miles to purchase a special Nook range wetsuit in Residential Services. The sleek black and turquoise wet suit will set you back about 800 Nook Miles and you will only receive it the day after purchase, worth bearing in mind if you’re eager to get swimming.

© Nintendo

Get swimming

First, you need to get suited up and this is the same procedure as getting dressed every day. Simply find the wetsuit in your inventory and select ‘wear’. It will appear over your normal clothes (so you’ll still be wearing shoes), not exactly the best fashion statement but you’ll be good to go. You will also find a snorkel that you have been gifted and other swimming items but these won’t have any impact on your ability to swim.

Now that you’re suited up, it’s time to let the good times roll and get in the ocean. You can either walk in through the waves or jump off one of the stony areas around your island by pressing A. Swimming itself is easy, just keep pressing A and use the left analog stick to steer the direction you want to go in.

How to swim faster in Animal Crossing?

If you press nothing whilst in the water, you will simply tread water and if you keep repeatedly tapping A whilst moving around, you will swim faster. We should mention that unfortunately, you cannot swim as far as other new islands as there is a boundary a few meters off the coast, at least you don't have to worry about getting lost!

How to dive in Animal Crossing?

If you want to dive, you will need to wear a snorkel - you have been gifted one with the update. You will need to dive in order to discover what hidden treasures await you under the water. When you see bubbles on the surface of the water, press Y to dive down and discover what kind of creature it is. Remember you’ll need to collect sea creatures in order to eventually find those Pearls, so have no fear, dive down and collect whatever you can find.

© Nintendo

It’s worth noting that Pascal the sea otter will trade you mermaid DIY recipes for any scallops you find and you’ll need some Pearls to complete these recipes so keep your eyes peeled.

How to catch and what to do with sea creatures?

Now that you know how to maneuver yourself in the sea, it’s all about exploring this domain. As mentioned above, bubbles on the surface of the water often indicate a creature in the water below you. If you’re positioned correctly over the bubbles and press Y, you will dive down and come back up with a new sea creature such as a sea star or sea anemone. You can also dive underwater and swim towards any shadows you come across. (Note that once you’re underwater, the camera will tilt and give you a better view of what’s below you.) Once you swim to the shadow while underwater, you’ll automatically collect whatever is there.

In addition to new sea creatures, you might also find new types of vegetation including seaweed, sea grapes, and more. In your Critterpedia, you will find a new section called ‘sea creatures’, and anything you end up collecting while swimming will end up in there.

As previously mentioned, you can trade in certain creatures with the otter Pascal for new DIY recipes, you can donate some of the wildlife you find to Blathers museum, you’ll need to use the pearls you find while diving to complete mermaid-themed DIY recipes and as with all other ‘normal’ wildlife, you can place it as decoration on your island.