12 Best Place To Spend New Year Eve
1.NEW YORK CITY
It may not be for everyone, but there’s no denying that New Year’s Eve in New York City has an atmosphere that few other cities can rival. Most famous, of course, is the annual gathering of a million people in Times Square to see famous musicians and the ball drop, in which a 12-foot-wide crystal ball weighing nearly 12,000 pounds descends atop One Times Square. For a slightly less chaotic experience, book a reservation at one of the bars or restaurants overlooking Times Square. And for something completely different, consider a nighttime boat ride on New York Harbor, which offers the best views of the midnight fireworks display on Liberty Island.
One of the world’s most dramatic skylines lights up every year with a display of fireworks that grows more impressive every year, concluding with a dazzling finale: a pyrotechnic dragon that dances across the sky. 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 dazzling lightshow.
Hogmanay translates to “last day of the year,” but the annual festivities in Edinburgh actually last three days. Things kick off on December 30 with a torchlight procession through the city that culminates in a fireworks finale, while New Year’s Eve is all about massive street parties and outdoor concerts, including a massive, open-air Kelidh (traditional Celtic party). At midnight, 4.5 tons of fireworks explode over Edinburgh Castle while the streets ring out with revelers singing “Auld Lang Syne.” New Year’s Day brings competitive dog sledding across Holyrood Park; brave souls jumping into the ice-cold waters of the River Forth at the conclusion of the Loony Dook parade (a charity event); and Scot:Lands, a multivenue music and arts festival.
Bangkok is an exciting international city that’s well-known to put on a great party, and it’s one of the best in Asia to be in for New Year’s Eve. On December 31, Bangkok pulls out all the stops for its celebration, with every bar and nightclub filled with revelers, though the biggest event is at CentralWorld Square, where several hundred thousand people gather for a spectacular light show and live concert. A number of eateries offer rooftop dinners including champagne and magnificent views of the fireworks display, while numerous lively beer garden line the streets. Families can also find a great spot at Asiatique, a night market for all ages that’s one of the most popular spots for the countdown to the New Year.
Barcelona is the party capital of Spain, and saves the very best for the last day of the year. In the hours up to midnight, massive street parties take over Plaza Catalunya, Las Ramblas and Plaza Reial, with large crowds singing, sipping champagne and counting down the minutes and seconds until the New Year. Restaurants, bars and nightclubs all hold special events to celebrate, while fireworks light up the sky at the far end of Barceloneta Beach. Find a spot near the marina for the best view, and be sure to stay during the first week of the New Year to watch the 3 Kings Parade with its brightly colored chariots, marching bands and torchlight processions through city streets.
More than 300,000 revelers descend on this party capital for the big night, when 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. Come midnight, fireworks are launched from seven rooftops along the Strip, so chances are you’ll see them whether you’re on the street or in an over-the-top hotel suite.
New Year’s Day is just as exciting as New Year’s Eve in the Bahamas, where the locals follow Junkanoo street parades that conclude with informal beach gatherings and fireworks displays around the islands. Featuring music, street performers, and colorful costumes, these parades, a sort of Bahamian take on Mardi Gras, also take place on January 1. 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 its 2014 celebration, Dubai made it into the Guinness Book of Records for having the largest fireworks display ever with 479,651 shells fired in six minutes over 400 parts of the Dubai shoreline. New Year’s Eve here is sure to be an experience of a lifetime, with performances by world superstars also bringing an unsurpassed dimension to massive parties that are known to stand out from those held around the globe in terms of grandeur and celebration. For the very best spot here, enjoy an iconic view of the brilliant display from the Burj Al Arab luxury hotel.
It may not be Mardi Gras, but New Year’s Eve in New Orleans is just as memorable. The main event is a thrilling 15-minute fireworks show on the Mississippi River, along with the Fleur de Lis drop, where “Baby New Year” is dropped from the roof of the Jax Brewery in Jackson Square. Of course the night doesn’t end there, as visitors and locals flock to Bourbon Street and the Latin Quarter, where music booms from bars and nightclubs, and the streets remain bustling until the wee hours.
If you want to be in one of the last places on earth to enter New Year, the Hawaiian Islands are a great spot that are well-worth the wait. Enjoy the tropical climate and dazzling fireworks displays from the beach. You’ll find light shows that illuminate the beachfronts in several places on Oahu, including Ko Olina, Waikiki and Aloha Tower as well as Wailea, Hana and Manele Bay on Maui. On Kauai, Poipu Beach is the place to be. Waterfront bars and clubs feature theme nights and open-air music concerts, while a wide range of boat cruises provide all types of fun ways to celebrate the New Year.
11.JOST VAN DYKE
You may call it New Year’s Eve, but on Jost Van Dyke, it’s 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, and draw a crowd from around the Caribbean and, in fact, 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.
12.WALT DISNEY WORLD
New Year’s Eve at Walt Disney World is a dream come true for families traveling over the holiday. The theme park stays open until 1 am, but it’s packed with fun activities all day long. Leading up to the midnight fireworks show, there are Cirque du Soleil performances, dance parties, live entertainers, and confetti explosions to keep visitors of all ages entertained. Disney’s Magic Kingdom is home to the Jingle Jungle Parade, while Epcot puts on an impressive lights and laser show just before midnight. It’s also a plus that WDW is less crowded at this time of year than during peak months.