ACNH Island Layout Ideas & Tips - How to Choose Island Layout in Animal Crossing New Horizons

Terraforming the island is a big project in Animal Crossing New Horizons, once you unlocked the Island Designer app on the NookPhone, you can rebuild your island through changing the rivers, building bridges, facilities, and more. What’s the best ACNH island layout to choose and what you can do when designing the island? Here we present some ACNH island layout tips and factors that impact the layout selection. 

ACNH island layout


ACNH Island Layout Ideas and Tips - How to Design Your Island in Animal Crossing New Horizons

You should have a list of areas that are planned to put on your island and where each area will go. 

- Plan your island early. Most building positions can be moved in the game, exclude Resident Services, although they need cost 50,000 ACNH bells. Figure out the designated location for each villager’s house, shop, and other buildings, to save lots of time and money in the subsequent design process.

- Work section by section. The first tip for the ACNH island layout is to do one area at a time. You can start from the Resident Services, it’s one of the most important buildings in the game, lots of your major activities are here. Then work with where you ensure you will terraform or the place you have enough items to decorate, like a residential area, clearing out roughly a big enough area to fit all of your residential things, finish it with all the furniture and other items you have. 

- Sketch out areas ahead of time. When you lack some Animal Crossing New Horizons items to finish an area, you can choose to outline the boundary first as long as you know how much space you want, place the sand, some fences around there, and the items you are going to use for the design, this can help you be clear about how things are going to look and you won’t forget your original idea.  

- Do terraforming before moving anything. Terraforming is to change the cliff, river and pond layout of your island. Before you build bridges, add inclines and move buildings, complete the terraforming first, otherwise, if you find something unsatisfied after the island design is completed, it will take much time and cost to make the change.  


How to Choose the Best Island Layout in ACNH?

When you choose an island, the most important factor you should consider is the position of Resident Services, then the location of airport and the location of rocks, in order of importance, other elements influence the island layout are location of cliff slopes, location of rivers, number of ponds, starting fruit, and starting villagers.

1. Location of Resident Services and Airport

There is a variety of island layout and shape in the game, when you are going to terraform your island, you need to choose the island first, and each Switch system can only have one island. It’s recommended to choose an island with Resident Services near the center of your island, you will use it quite often to sell & buy ACNH items, craft DIYs, repay loans, and more things. And you can change its location, in order to be more convenient to live, the middle or center of the island is the best position of Resident Services. Similar to Resident Services, you can’t change the location of the airport as well, the airport is the first place you get to the island. If you want it is located in a specific position, you need to check out the ACNH island layout first and choose the one you favorite. 


2. Distribution of Rocks

Where the rocks are distributed is also important, as you know, hit the rocks with a shovel or other tools will spawn some items and probably ACNH bells, in order to make use of each rock on the island, you’d better ensure that all rocks are not close to a cliff or alongside a river. 


3. Location of Cliff Slopes

Cliff slopes are where you can use for going to the higher or lower position of the island, so, choose an easy-to-access cliff slope will make more convenience, especially when you don’t have a ladder. Of course, you can also build a new slope.


4. Location of Rivers

At the beginning of New Horizons, it’s wise to choose an island with a proper river trend, because the river will divide an area into two sides, before you have gained a vaulting pole, you can’t cross the river to the other side. So, it makes sense that select an island with maximum space on one side of the river for your movement and activity. But you can change the river when you unlocked the Island Designer. 


5. The Number of Ponds

There are many types of fish and bugs in the pond, some of them are peculiar to ponds, so more ponds mean you have a bigger chance to get these critters. But with more ponds and lakes, you will have less accessible ground and they will get in the way when you build other facilities. The number of ponds can be changed when you unlock the Island Designer app.


6. Fruit and Villagers

The fruit grown from the original tree on your island is called native fruit, which is less valuable than non-native fruit, which is obtained from others’ island, you can visit the mystery island using ACNH NMT and collect crafting materials at the same time. You can choose the island with different fruits. There are 391 villagers in ACNH, excluding special characters, selecting different islands will give you different characters with you. But you can’t know the fruit types and first two villagers until you arrive on the island, if you want to get different results, reset the data and start the game again.


So, the best island layout you should choose is the one with Resident Services located around the center of the island and there is a pond you can access. The pond shape is random, you can choose a pattern you favorite. Here are some best ACNH island layouts:

best acnh island layout 1

best acnh island layout 2

best acnh island layout 3