A Saturn return is a period of time that occurs when the planet Saturn returns to the place in the sky that it was in when a person was born.
It takes Saturn approximately 29.5 years to complete one revolution around the Sun, and thus Saturn returns occur in 29 year intervals.
Modern astrologers tend to ascribe a lot of significance to the period of time surrounding a person’s first Saturn return, which is said to be a major developmental stage, marking the final passage into adulthood. Within this context, the Saturn return is usually associated with the period of time from the age of 27 to 30. This is partially due to the fact that the events or processes surrounding the Saturn return are usually seen as beginning a while before the Saturn return is exact or partile, and it continues for a while after that point in time as well. Some astrologers ascribe this to the orb associated with the Saturn return, while others say that it is because the return is associated with Saturn’s return back to the entire natal sign of the zodiac that Saturn was in at birth, and not just the degree.
The Saturn return is often experienced differently for different people, depending on the way that Saturn is situated in the natal chart. For some it is an important period of accomplishment, while for others it is a more difficult period that is associated with obstacles and setbacks.
Although the first Saturn return is usually seen as the most important, since Saturn is on a 29 year cycle a person can also experience a second or even a third Saturn return, which occur around the ages of 57-59 and 86-88, respectively. So, broadly speaking, a Saturn return occurs anytime Saturn returns back to the same position it held in the natal chart. However, in practice, when most astrologers mention the Saturn return, they are usually referring to the first Saturn return.