New Years comes around each year with travelers looking to put that stamp on the end of the year. Some have great years and are just looking to cap it off and other looking for that fresh start of a new year and new memories. New Years and is a worldwide event but as you travel you will find the party doesn’t always stop at midnight on December 31st. In fact many places have some one of a kind new years days activities as well as many other cultural traditions to take part in. So as we search the globe for some great events here is a list of a few of them that stood out to us.
1. New York City
Now this one can be a bit crowded, cold and a cast of other negative aspects but you can’t beat the excitement of the well televised and often imitated famous ball drop in Times Square. This bucket list quality event happening in New York each year brings an over a million people to take part. If standing in the giants crowds of Times Square is not exactly what you were looking for don’t take New York off your list just yet as there is always the opportunity to take in a night time boat ride in New York Harbor. This option will allow you to be the crowded streets as well as have the best view of the top class fireworks display from Liberty Island.
Ring in the New Year as only Londoners can, with the chiming of Big Ben at midnight. The event draws in more than 250,000 people to crowd the banks of the Thames and its numerous bridges to see the spectacular ten-minute light show and fireworks display, with the London Eye, the Houses of Parliament, and the Shard among highlights of the scenery you will get to take in while in attendance. Of course this wouldn’t be on the list if the fun ended there; there are many after-parties, and on New Year’s Day the streets of central London see a parade that features colorful floats, marching bands, costumed dancers, and a procession of the Queen’s horses. A great place to be for those New Years Travelers.
3. Rio de Janeiro
If you were one that had Rio’s Carnivals on your list then their New Years celebration should be a close second.Famous Copacabana Beach throws one of the arguably wildest parties and certainly one of the largest to be found. Know as Réveillon, the celebration is a mix of traditional and superstitious beliefs along with a blend or religious and traditional elements. One thing to note for this one is to make sure you dress head to toe in white as per tradition its believed to be good luck.
Lets start of the fact if you want everyone to see how your New Years celebration is going down in style then why not in Sydney where its the first major city to have the clock strike midnight. Its a great way to get a leg up on a great start to a new year. Now the party is second to none with crowds much like New York pulling in over a million people to take part. lets talk fireworks, picture at postcard like backdrop of Sydney Harbor Bridge and Sydney Opera House, now stack on the worlds largest fireworks display. This display not only goes off at midnight but and additional sow that takes place earlier in the night at 9pm. Add in an aerial and water show with aerial acrobatics and a light parade with more than 50 illuminated boats and I would say you have yourself a party.
How about a New Years Eve party that last 3 days? The party starts December 30th with a torchlight procession through the city that works its way up to a fireworks finale. New Years Eve is filled with street parties and outdoor concerts and open air Kelidh. As the clock strikes midnight nearly 5 tons of fireworks explode over the city and locals sing “Auld Lang Syne”. New Years Day the festivities continue with competitive dog sledding, along with a parade and multi-venue music and arts festival.
Okay, ok we had to put the city of love on the list, if not for that infamous midnight kiss alone, but for The City of Light lives up to its nickname on New Year’s Eve as well. The Eiffel Tower becomes the site of a spectacular lightshow and fireworks display. Nearby, Parisians ring in the Nouvelle Année on the Champs-Élysées, which hosts a massive street party, where they pop bottles of what else, Champagne! As for an alternate area that’s less crowded, Montmarte offers equally good views of the fireworks, or you can book a dinner cruise aboard a bateau-mouche on the Seine. Lets not forget the atmosphere as a whole of being in Paris all itself with your loved one bringing in a New Year!
7. Hong Kong
With a display of fireworks that grows more impressive every year and one of the world’s most dramatic skylines your New Years Even is in for a truly dazzling finale. The events kick off in Hong Kong’s Times Square shopping mall, where a replica ball drop takes place in homage to New York City’s famous festivities. Victoria Harbour is the center of the evening activity, though, so savvy locals party on boats, rooftop terraces, or at the Avenue of Stars in Tsim Tsa Shui for the best views of the amazing light show. Hong Kong that does things in a big way and should be on your list in a big way!
Berlin has a reputation for being a party city year-round, so you can imagine what New Year’s Eve is like here. Know as “Silvester” in Berlin New Years even is one party not to miss. The centerpiece of the action is “Party Mile,” a two-kilometer stretch of bars, international food stalls, laser shows, video screens, party tents, music stages, and more between Brandenburg Gate and Victory Column. After the fireworks show at midnight, the crowds head to the city’s many dance floors, where they stay out until dawn or later.
9. Las Vegas
You would think with all that Vegas has to off it would pull in more than 300,000 party goers to descend on this party capital. The Las Vegas Strip becomes car-free and transforms into a giant street party with live bands, pyrotechnic displays, and laser shows. The city also hosts a mind-boggling number of concerts, shows, and parties in clubs, hotels, and casinos, meaning there’s no shortage of evening entertainment options. However, make sure you plan ahead on this one as many club arrangements and hotels will sell out so planning is key here. As with just about all of our list favorites at midnight fireworks are launched. Vegas does it Vegas style, launching it from seven rooftops along the Strip! In a city that never sleeps this is one party that carries well on into the next day for most.
Bahamas make this list as the islands combine for a overwhelming amount of opportunities to take in the New Year. Also New Year’s Day is just as exciting as New Year’s Eve in the Bahamas, where the locals follow Junkanoo street parades followed by informal beach gatherings and fireworks displays around the islands, what could be better. Festivities include music, street performers, and colorful costumes, parades which is a sort of Bahamian take on Mardi Gras. The notable New Year’s Day Junkanoos can be found in downtown Freeport on Grand Bahama Island, along Bay Street in downtown Nassau, in Nicholls Town on North Andros, in Plymouth on Green Turtle Cay, and in Alice Town in North Bimini. Alternatively, big properties such as the Atlantis and the Grand Lucayan offer their own parties, some of which are family-friendly for those traveling with little ones.
11. Jost Van Dyke
Although its not actually called New Year’s Eve, on Jost Van Dyke, it’s referred to as Old Year’s Night. The festivities on this tiny British Virgin Island take place at Foxy’s Tamarind Bar and other nightlife spots in Grand Harbor. This quaint island festivities draw a crowd from around the Caribbean and from all the world. One of the most raucous New Year’s parties in the region, Old Year’s Night celebrations actually consist of 48 hours of live music, drinking, and eating; the annual event attracts thousands of shirtless or bikini-clad partygoers who stay up late and sometimes sleep on the beach. I don’t know about you but this seems like one of those lesser talked about spots that should be on your must do vacation list.
12. Walt Disney World Florida
Admittedly we don’t have a ton of super family friendly destinations on the list, all the more reason for Disney World in Florida to get a mention. New Year’s Eve at Walt Disney World is a dream come true for families traveling over the holiday. If you can keep the kids energy up the theme park actually stays open until 1 am, but it’s packed with fun activities all day long so you may need to pace the little ones if they are going to make it all day. The night caps off at midnight with a fireworks show, but through out the day there are Cirque du Soleil performances, dance parties, live entertainers, and confetti explosions to keep visitors of all ages entertained. Epcot puts on an impressive lights and laser show just before midnight as well. A surprising plus for travelers is that Disney World is actually a lot less crowded compared to peak season months. This also means you can get some great deals on vacation rentals as well!
Amsterdam is on most peoples travel bucket list so why not take it in while impromptu street parties are easy to find. In the Dutch capital on New Year’s Eve there are also organized parties in just about every large public space, including Rembrandtplein, Nieuwmarkt, Museumplein and Dam Square. Fireworks displays go off in multiple locations, which are best viewed from the city’s bridges. After those are over, revelers head out to the clubs for drinks, live music, and dancing until the sun comes up. It has all the ingredients for a memorable New Years Vacation!
If you are one looking for the best in nightlife when it comes to New Year’s Even then Miami with its world-class nightlife scene needs to be on your radar for the holiday. Miami is a no-brainer for New Year’s celebrations, and the city offers celebrations both free and VIP, and everything in between. This is a popular place to be so you are going to want to plan out your trip to ensure you get into the places you have on your list. The festivities in Bayfront Park start at 8 pm and include dancing and fireworks at midnight; in South Beach, Lummus Park on Ocean Drive hosts a party from 9 pm to 2 am, which also includes live music and fireworks. If you are looking for more of a VIP experience Miami’s glitzy hotels host exclusive events with big-name acts, open bars, and private fireworks displays. Of course you can enjoy this all with a comforting average temperature of around 75 degrees. Yeah this vacation destination deserves its place on the list.
15. Cape Town
How about another three day span of festivities on the list? Check! Cape Town for New years offers up just that. On New Year’s Eve, the Victoria & Albert Waterfront hosts a concert and midnight fireworks display. Some travelers looking to outsmart the crowds will picnic and party on Table Mountain for unobstructed views of the fireworks. The Victoria Falls New Year’s Carnival includes a carnival-themed train and live music. On New Year’s Day and the day after, thousands head to local beaches, and the Cape Town Minstrel Carnival parades through downtown, with 10,000 performers dancing and singing in the streets, a tradition that dates back to the 19th-century slave trade. So between the must haves of fireworks shows and parties, Cape Town adds to that with its parades and beautiful beaches making it a must attend New Year’s destination.
Bangkok has you now! This wild metropolis’s comes together for New Year’s Eve festivities with locals and travelers alike for a massive New Years festivity. The centerpiece of which is a massive gathering in Central World Square. The crowd numbers hundreds of thousands, with entertainment including a spectacular light show, live concerts, and video screens projecting celebrations from around the world. At midnight, of course, a series of fireworks displays illuminate the riverside. Afterward, the party continues at nightclubs and beer gardens. In addition to the festivities Bangkok is always a place to find affordable accommodations leaving more of your holiday budget to take in all that the city has to offer.
Sign me up for some New Year’s Eve activities in a gorgeous setting. That is the draw that brings travelers to this Hawaiian Island for the holiday. The Aloha Tower New Year’s Eve party begins at 7 pm and goes until 2 am, featuring live music, dancing, and fireworks. There’s also a fireworks show at Waikiki Beach, which is a decidedly calmer affair. There of course are daytime celebrations for families, which concludes with fireworks after sunset for those traveling with the kids and looking for fun for the whole family. Not to mention the number of options of where to stay on the island from some of finest resorts to amazing private vacation rentals.