Looking for the ultimate New Year’s Eve celebration to say goodbye to the past 365 days? Here are five celebrations around the world that you have to experience to believe.
Sydney Harbour’s firework extravaganza is watched by more than a million people gathered along the foreshore – but a better idea is to join the boatfuls of revellers bobbing in the water. You can hire out a boat, bring your own bubbles and start the countdown early. Landlubbers might prefer to reserve an outside table at one of the waterfront restaurants by Sydney Harbour Bridge for a front-row seat.
Rio de Janeiro, Brazil
What’s better than a beach party on New Year’s Eve? A beach party in Brazil! Join two million of your closest friends and ring in the new year on Copacabana Beach. Second, only to Carnival, New Year’s Eve in Rio de Janeiro is one of the biggest parties of the year, so don your white clothing (with touches of red for romance and good luck) and be prepared to be sprayed with Champagne (it’s a thing). A 20-minute fireworks display is just the start of the evening; the music will be bumping and people will be partying all night long.
New York City, USA
There’s a reason that ringing in the new year in Times Square in New York City is on so many people’s lists. It’s not just the one million people crowding together to watch the ball drop at One Times Square and the huge, flashing billboards. It’s also the millions nationwide and billions worldwide who are watching on their televisions that adds to the general excitement of this event. If you’re heading to New York to participate, be sure to dress warmly, get there early, and follow the rules. Drinking alcohol in public is prohibited and is strictly enforced (plus, if you have to leave to find a bathroom, you may lose your spot). Want to watch the crowds with a cocktail? Make a reservation (in advance) at a bar with a view of the event.
Hong Kong, China
There’s something to be said about New Year’s Eve on the water. Just like in Sydney, you can watch the beautiful fireworks reflect off the water from the shoreline or sail into the reflection on a junk (a type of boat). Or hunker down in one of the city’s amazing rooftop bars. Whether you’re on the 118th floor of The Ritz-Carlton, Hong Kong or you’re at the Peninsula, which even has views from the restrooms, you’re sure to find a great spot for this memorable event.
While some old-schoolers may think that the shine has worn down on Goa due to the large influx of tourists, there’s still something to be said for a toes-in-the-sand celebration on a beautiful beach. There are music festivals, underground parties, and plenty of fireworks to satisfy even the most curmudgeonly of holidaymakers, all while enjoying a balmy temperature. Bypass Anjuna for Palolem and you’ll battle fewer crowds and have just as lovely of experience—at a price that is worth celebrating.