New Year’s Eve is one of the biggest party nights of the year. Seeing the new year in is a night to remember and a great excuse to party till dawn. Its also a great time to travel and experience different celebrations around the world. If you’re thinking of taking a trip, here are some of the best New Year’s Eve Parties around the world…
1. Rio de Janeiro, Brazil
It’s estimated that around 2 million party-goers will meet on Copacabana beach this new year’s eve. The ‘Revellion’ event is held every year and here you can eat, drink, watch fireworks and dance into the early hours of the morning. Rio is famous for its partying and many visitors talk of the great atmosphere, weather, scenery and of course the beautiful people. For many of the locals the occasion has a religious meaning and offerings of flowers, rice and perfume are made on the beach to the Goddess of the Sea. Live music is played throughout the day but the party really kicks off around 7pm when the entertainment starts on the official main stages. Be sure to wear white and you’ll blend in perfectly.
2. Edinburgh, Scotland
The annual Hogamany in Edinburgh is a legendary event and is often cited as the world’s best New Year’s Eve party. Join merry Scots and 100,000 other revellers and expect four days of fun and free events. The organisers ensure everyone’s tastes are catered for and festivities include a traditional torchlit procession, street performers, ceilidh bands as well as the famous gigantic street party. Guests are also treated to a large and impressive firework display at midnight – just make sure you bring your warmest clothes.
3. Times Square, New York
A New York tradition since 1906, an estimated one million will people gather in Times Square this New Year’s Eve. The highlight of the evening is seeing the legendary crystal and electric light ball drop from the top of One Times Square. The event is free and apparently the fantastic atmosphere is definitely worth waiting around in the cold for. If you are thinking of going, arrive early and be prepared to be barricaded into areas where you’ll have to stay for the duration of the evening.
4. London, England
London is another popular place to party on New Year’s Eve and the UK capital offers a wide range of clubs, bars and restaurants to choose from. Although many of London’s venues are ticketed, with a bit of searching you can find some great venues which offer live music or DJs. Many places stay open until the early hours and some even employ special celebrity guests to welcome in the new year. In the past, most people looking for a free event gathered in Trafalgar Square but now the main focus is the London Eye (located on South Bank). Here thousands of people watch a large firework display at midnight and the best viewing spots are the Westminster Bridge and the north embankment of the River Thames.
5. Reykjavik, Iceland
Reykjavik is a very trendy travel destination and New Year’s Eve would be a great time to experience this unique and happening city. Iceland has a reputation for having excellent night life, which might have something to do with their long dark nights. The celebrations on New Year’s Eve start with revellers gathering around a large bonfire in each quarter of the city then at midnight everyone watches a display of beautiful fireworks. Most then head down town to party until the early morning and many of the bars and clubs offer live music until at least 5am the next day.
6. Tokyo, Japan
Japan’s capital is a very cool and progressive city and “Omisoka” (New Year’s Eve Tokyo style) should be experienced at least once in your lifetime. Celebrations start early on 29th December and the fireworks, dancing and singing continue until the 4th January. The hip and young go to the city’s clubs to see their favourite DJ but if you want to celebrate in a more traditional way, head for the Zojoji Temple where locals drink sake, build bonfires and bring loved ones to be blessed.
7. Seattle, United States
Seattle is a laid back cosmopolitan city and home to grunge, great rock bands and err…Starbucks. The city transforms itself into party town on New Year’s Eve and it would be a great place to welcome in the new year. A large free display of fireworks takes place in the city centre and there are also 35 bars to choose to grab a drink from. Although if you want to party on a larger scale then join the other 3,000 revellers as they rock out at the Experience Music Project Museum (EMP) “Indulgence Party”. Buying a ticket will get you entry to the pre-party singles cocktail hour, a museum tour and a chance to dance the night away right underneath the city’s iconic Space Needle.
8. Goa, India
Goa still hosts once of the world’s best New Year’s Eve parties and it’s this time of year the partying really steps up a gear. If you like to party really hard try Anjuna beach resort where rave/beach parties last for 3-4 days! On New Years Eve the parties in this idyllic Indian paradise get even bigger and all the resorts along the coast join together for one massive celebration. Book a plane to Goa this new year and dance like a madman surrounded by palm trees, sacred cows and locals selling space cakes. Then chill out at one of the many beachside cafes to watch the new year sunrise.
9. Niagara Falls, Canada
“Party in Niagara” is a huge organised free event that attracts 30,000 people each year. As well as the incredibly beautiful scenery the organisers provide party-goers with an outdoor alcohol-licensed area, food and drink stalls, performances by top musical acts and of course a very impressive firework display over the famous falls. More live music, performed by local and international musicians, can be found in nearby Clifton Hills.
10. Melbourne, Australia
Book a trip to the friendly Australian city of Melbourne and greet the new year with a series of celebrations at five venues stretching along the Yarra River. The huge event includes a large firework display, live comedians, bands and even a family friendly movie shown on a giant screen.