Animal Crossing: How To Decorate Your Island For A 5-Star Rating

Upon accomplishing the task of populating their island with villagers and witnessing the enchanting performance of K.K. Slider in Animal Crossing: New...

Bruno Yonezawa

Oct 16, 2023

Animal Crossing: How To Decorate Your Island For A 5-Star Rating

Upon accomplishing the task of populating their island with villagers and witnessing the enchanting performance of K.K. Slider in Animal Crossing: New Horizons, players embark upon the true journey that lies ahead. The unlocking of the terraforming feature grants them the power to shape the land according to their desires, allowing them to bend it to their will. It is at this pivotal juncture that they may aspire to achieve the illustrious five-star rating, marking a pinnacle of accomplishment. Isabelle, a trusted guide in this realm, offers invaluable advice, ranging from the art of tree removal to the delicate artistry of flower planting.

The crux of her message revolves around the necessity of decoration. Nevertheless, she concludes her statement without further elaboration. Should you seek inspiration and guidance on adorning your island and attaining the elusive five-star rating, you have arrived at the ideal destination.

Revised on October 15, 2023, by Gabrielle Castania: Despite the absence of fresh content for Animal Crossing: New Horizons, we felt compelled to revisit and refine our concepts for crafting captivating Animal Crossing islands, aiming to assist those who still revel in the delightful existence of their island paradise, in their pursuit of achieving the highly coveted five-star ratings.

How To Unlock ACNH Island Evaluations

Animal Crossing: How To Decorate Your Island For A 5-Star Rating

Upon embarking on your Animal Crossing island journey, immediate access to Island Evaluations is not granted. Certain prerequisites must be fulfilled within the game to unlock this feature. These prerequisites include:

  • Construct Nook's Cranny
  • Build your first bridge
  • Furnish three incoming villager homes
  • Upgrade Resident Services

Once the Resident Services building is upgraded to a bustling town square, the beloved assistant, Isabelle, will relocate to your Animal Crossing island, much to the delight of everyone.

Assuming responsibility for island evaluations, the initial step entails the arrival of Isabelle to your island. Thus, bringing her to your island serves as the foundational milestone.

    What Are Scenery And Development Points in ACNH?

    Animal Crossing: How To Decorate Your Island For A 5-Star

    Regarding the rating of your Animal Crossing island, the game meticulously monitors and assesses two distinct scores to determine your star rating.

    Your development score assigns points according to the enhancements made throughout the island. Building bridges and inclines, erecting fences, adorning with acquired furniture items, and achieving full upgrades for your stores all contribute to augmenting your score.

    Simultaneously, the scenery score diligently monitors the presence of flora and fauna (notice the playful wordplay?) on your island. By planting trees, both regular and hybrid flowers, as well as bushes, and strategically positioning handcrafted DIY furniture items in outdoor spaces across the island, you have the ability to elevate your scenery score.

    The culmination of these scores determines your overall star rating, which we will further elaborate on in the table provided below:

    Animal Crossing Island Rating Points

    Star Rating

    Development Points

    Scenery Points


    Below 80

    Below 200


    Between 80 and 159

    Between 200 and 269


    Between 160 and 399

    Between 270 and 349


    Between 400 and 664

    Between 350 and 449


    Over 665

    Over 450

    Animal Crossing: How To Decorate Your Island For A

    Point Values For Your Development Score





    Upgraded Nook's Cranny


    Able Sisters



    15 (per Bridge)


    15 (per Incline)

    Nine Villagers


    Ten Villagers


    Less than 100 Weeds


    Placed Item




    Animal Crossing: How To Decorate Your Island For

    Point Values For Your Development Score











    Pumpkin Sprout




    Flower Bud


    DIY Furnishing


    Large DIY Furnishing


    Scenery points are not awarded for plants until they reach full maturity, meaning it will take a few days for the points to be included in your overall scenery score.

    Rewards For Having A Five-Star Island

    Animal Crossing: How To Decorate Your Island

    In addition to boasting rights, achieving a five-star island grants you two rewards:

    • Lilies-of-the-Valley: These unique white flowers will start growing on your island as long as your island remains at five stars.
    • Golden Watering Can Recipe: This is the most durable watering can in the game. This watering can is the only way to grow golden roses. Water and crossbreed black roses with this watering can to get the highly desired golden roses.

    Animal Crossing Island Ideas To Increase Your Island Points

    Animal Crossing: How To Decorate Your

    Understanding the point values required to advance your island's ranking is one aspect, while having ideas for what to do is another. Fortunately, a plethora of imaginative concepts have been shared by players, showcasing various ways to meet the point conditions necessary for attaining a five-star rating.

    Expand The Shops To Outside

    The Nook's Cranny and Able Sisters stores serve as ideal starting points for embellishing your island. The most captivating storefronts often incorporate elements such as seating, signs, plants, and charming fencing.

    A multitude of players take pleasure in showcasing clothing and accessories outside the Able Sisters store. Some choose to incorporate a charming coffee shop alongside it, while others passionately decorate the area with an abundance of flowers, bushes, and fences. Naturally, players often combine elements from all three approaches. As for Nook's Cranny, creative ideas range from setting up a designated bicycle parking area to establishing a vibrant fruit stall, a delightful plant shop, or even a serene patio adorned with comfortable seating.

    Supplement Your Museum

    Animal Crossing: How To Decorate

    Who said the Animal Crossing: New Horizons museum had to be confined to the indoors? Embellish your island's museum with your very own collection of artifacts. These could include duplicate fossils from the interior displays, components of the shell furniture set, or simply items you deem deserving of a place within a museum.

    Furthermore, you have the opportunity to construct a park surrounding the museum. Consider installing a playground area or even establishing a cozy coffee shop in close proximity.

    Build Yards Around Villager Homes

    Animal Crossing: How To

    The act of incorporating fences into your Animal Crossing: New Horizons island elevates your island score, bringing you closer to achieving the coveted five-star goal while imbuing your island with a vibrant sense of occupancy. Bestow each of your villagers with their own fenced-in yard, and within these boundaries, you can adorn the space with an assortment of flowers, shrubs, and carefully selected pieces of furniture.

    Fans have found immense joy in harmonizing the colors and personalities of their various villagers with the design of their respective yards. For instance, providing cat grass to cat villagers such as Raymond, adorning blue flowers for a blue-colored villager like Sherb, or generously placing sweets and confectioneries within the yard of a villager like Merengue.

    Make A Park

    Animal Crossing: How

    Creating a park is a simple yet effective method to utilize space and infuse your island with a plethora of decorations. Consider incorporating elements such as a playground, vibrant flowers, a scenic walkway, a charming theme park area, enchanting fountains, and other delightful additions to enhance the park's ambiance.

    The possibilities are limitless, and the game provides a multitude of diverse decorations that are well-suited for a park. This serves as the perfect opportunity to creatively accumulate scenery points through decorative enhancements!

    Set Up A Big Garden

    Animal Crossing:

    Gardens in Animal Crossing can extend beyond mere crop cultivation for cooking. Enhance your Animal Crossing island by adorning it with charming elements like gnomes, decorative lights, beekeeping boxes, a picturesque well, whimsical pots, a friendly scarecrow, and a cozy bench. You could even create a delightful little table for visitors to enjoy a cup of tea amidst the blooming flowers.

    Not only will this contribute to increasing your island's points, but gathering numerous flowers in one location can also attract a greater variety of bugs in a visually deliberate manner.

    Construct A Spa


    Once you have the ability to terraform your island, you can create your own waterfalls. By strategically placing waterfalls, along with vibrant flowers, towels, changing rooms, lanterns, and an abundance of hot tubs, you can fashion a spa area within your village.

    Create A Restaurant Area

    Numerous imaginative players are crafting their own charming restaurants on their islands. With a wide array of tables, chairs, delectable food items, and kitchen accessories at your disposal, you can bring your restaurant vision to life. Enhance the ambiance with fencing and pathways, and you'll have everything you need to create a delightful dining experience.

    The cooking system truly breathes life into this concept. If you find yourself short on food to place on the tables, simply gather some flowers or purchase candles to tastefully decorate them instead.

    Add Elements To Your Campsite

    Campers require more than just a tent to fully enjoy their time. A quick and efficient method to decorate your Animal Crossing island is by placing furniture items around the campsite. You have the freedom to add various elements, ranging from a pool for relaxation, a designated area for stargazing, a scenic trail for exploration, to even a quaint telephone booth. The possibilities are endless!

    Consider what would enhance the overall enjoyment of a visitor at a campsite. Even something as simple as a pathway or signs directing towards your stores and resident services can add a realistic and immersive touch to the experience.

    Decorate Your Beaches

    The beaches are already wonderful, but they can truly transform into a paradise with the right decorations. Incorporating beach balls, fishing gear, lawn chairs, towels, and other beach-themed items can significantly boost your island's points towards achieving a five-star rating. Additionally, consider adding a majestic lighthouse and some swaying coconut trees to further enhance the beach ambiance.

    Do not hesitate to experiment with how flowers can complement the beach areas. Additionally, do not overlook the pier - you can actually place furniture on it to provide Kapp'n with some decorative elements.

    Talk To Sable Every Day For More Decoration Options

    Customizing furniture is a fantastic way to add personal flair and can spark more creative ideas. However, if you're not inclined to create your own artwork, you may find yourself somewhat limited in your decoration choices.

    However, if you make it a habit to speak with Sable every day, she will eventually provide you with a multitude of additional patterns that you can use on various pieces of furniture.

    Plant A Bamboo Grove

    Eventually, by using Nook Mile Tickets, you can acquire bamboo to plant on your island. The question then arises: where should you place it? Many players have opted to create their own charming groves of bamboo.

    You have the option to embellish the bamboo grove with lanterns, waterfalls, mossy rocks, and statues, or even integrate it with your campsite or park area. The possibilities for decoration are endless!

    What Lowers Your Island Rating?

    While you have numerous options to creatively enhance your Animal Crossing island rating, there are a few factors that can lower your island rating. These include:

    • Having more than 220 trees and bamboo planted around the island.
      • Too many weeds also impact your rating, even when used decoratively with your other plants - the game doesn't differentiate.
    • Leaving 15 or more items dropped on the ground outdoors instead of properly placed outside.
      • Tree branches, stones knocked from rocks, star fragments, and shells do not count toward this metric.
    • Placing more than 45 total items within an 8x8 square anywhere on the island, leading to overcrowding.
    • Having seven or fewer villagers living on the island.

    If one or more of these conditions are present on your island, you'll cap your island rating at a max of four. Alleviate any of these issues to boost your island back to a five-star rating.


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