We will be open at 9:00 am. Call 020 7590 0610

How to celebrate New Year's Eve abroad

Article content

2 October 2012 by Alex Stewart

Ever wondered what it would be like to spend New Year's Eve somewhere abroad?

If last year, as you battled to the bar of your local, you decided to make those resolutions stick and to do New Year properly next time, use our round-up of how other countries celebrate December 31 to plan something different.

Edinburgh

Edinburgh New Year's Eve

The Scottish capital celebrates Hogmanay hard, with outdoor concerts, ceilidh's in the Assembly Rooms and wild processions and parties throughout the city that culminate in raucous renditions of Auld Lang Syne. Blow the cobwebs away afterwards with a dip in the freezing River Forth.

Paris

Jubilant crowds gather on the Champs-Elysées to drink champagne, let off bangers and watch the Eiffel Tower disappear in a haze of fireworks and lasers before planting a double kiss on friends and strangers alike and wishing them Bonne Année. For a higher vantage point, climb to the Sacré Coeur on Montmartre and look out over the city's celebrations.

Krakow

Krakow New Year's Eve

New Year is at its most wintry in Poland, with roast chestnuts and glühwein the order of the day along with snow flurries and plunging temperatures. And, fo course, revellers in the main square consuming vast quantities of beer.

Sydney

Sydney New Year's Eve

As the first major city to start the new year, Australia's iconic capital hosts the greatest firework display in the world. Take to a boat and join the flotilla in the harbour with prime viewpoints, otherwise celebrate on the waterfront or retreat to the beach on Cockatoo Island for an alternative vantage point. If you're feeling fresh enough the following day, climb the Harbour Bridge and see where the fireworks were set off.

Goa

If dancing under the stars is your ideal way to welcome in the New Year, then head to Anjuna or Palolem on India's southern coast. Purists might point out that Goa's legendary parties aren't what they once were, but the country's good-time state still knows how to throw a great party. Afterwards, head north to find a retreat and detox with yoga and reiki.

Rio de Janeiro

Rio de Janeiro New Year's Eve

With the city sweltering in the midsummer heat, revellers take to Copacabana Beach, where live music from traditional samba to rock and carnival tunes get the throngs going before a spectacular firework display, launched from boats offshore, ushers in the New Year. Dress in white and float an offering on the sea to ensure good luck for the following year, if the tide takes your offering out to sea then you'l enjoy good fortune.

New York

New York New Year's Eve

Join hundreds of thousands of people in Times Square to watch the famous six-ton ball drop from the flagpole atop One Times Square. Stand in the square with the crowds or watch from one of the hotels on the square that have great views of the Square and the fireworks that erupt just after the drop.

Las Vegas

Las Vegas New Year's Eve

If you can't settle on a city to celebrate in, head to Las Vegas, where you can have dinner in Paris, New Year in New York and a wild after-party in Venice, all the while surrounded by the shows, events, entertainers, pyrotechnics and parties that make the Strip one of the liveliest places to celebrate.

Hong Kong

Hong Kong New Year's Eve

If you can't make December 31, then Victoria Harbour is the place to be to witness the countdown to Chinese New Year. Because the Chinese Calendar consists of both Gregorian and lunar-solar calendar systems, Chinese New Year can begin anytime between late January and mid-February. Firecrackers, drums, gongs and cymbals create a cacophony of noise, whilst traditional parades and lion dancers add colour and a carnival atmosphere to the mix. A firework display all along the waterfront finally illuminates the city's skyline and the mountains behind.

Or, to get away from it all...

Alternatively, if you want to avoid New Year, head to Ethiopia - the country uses the Julian calendar, so New Year's Eve is in fact in September and December 31 has no cultural significance. December is a great time to visit nonetheless; the country boasts churches dug out of the rock at Lalibela, the home of the Queen of Sheba at Axum and wildlife and dramatic landscapes in the Simien Mountains, all of which can be seen without a firework or party popper in sight.

So, where will you be this New Year's Eve?

Related offers

Aerial view, Wilderness Safaris Magashi Camp, Akagera National Park, Rwanda

Wilderness Safaris Magashi Camp, Akagera National Park, Rwanda

Contemporary safari lodge

Hidden in Rwanda’s remote Akagera National Park, Magashi Camp is a new eco-retreat on the wildlife-rich tip of the stunning Lake Rwanyakizinga. With just six stylish safari tents, the focus here is on conservation and back-to-nature safari experiences, alongside gourmet dining, wine cellar and pool.

Rio de Janeiro

Luxury Argentina & Brazil

13-day tailor-made journey from £4,775 pp incl. flights

Discover the highlights of Argentina and Brazil in style, visiting the likes of the Iguazu Falls and Corcovado mountain and staying in some of South America's most luxurious hotels.

Aerial view of Bordeaux vineyard in France on the River Garonne

No-fly Bordeaux: Garonne River Cruise

8-day no-fly cruise from £1,955 pp

Special
cruise offer

Save up to 30% on 2020 departures
Book by: 29 February 2020

Explore Bordeaux and its picturesque surrounds on an all-inclusive scenic river cruise, enjoying the likes of bicycle tours among the vineyards and visits to local farmers markets.

Avignon Bridge with Popes Palace in Provence, France

No-fly Paris, Lyon and Provence with Tauck

10-day no-fly cruise from £3,820 pp

Pair a luxury stay in Paris and an indulgent Rhône River cruise with gourmet dining, drinks and included touring. Bookended by convenient rail connections, there's no need to fly.

A group of people enjoy riding a camel walking on a sand dune in Hunder, Ladakh, India

Ladakh: The Himalayan Kingdom

12-day tailor-made holiday from £2,835 pp incl. flights

Journey north from Delhi and experience the breathtaking splendour of the Himalayas. From the sand dunes of Hunder to the world's highest motorable road in Nubra Valley, this is a place of excitement and wonder.

La Maison Estournel Vineyard

Champagne to Bordeaux: Wine regions of France

7-day no-fly tailor-made itinerary from £1,730 pp

Explore France's fabled wine regions on this no-fly itinerary from Reims to Bordeaux. Taste Champagne and wine direct from the source with included tours throughout.

Why book with Wexas Travel?

At Wexas, we specialise in bespoke travel experiences. Our itineraries are just samples of what we can arrange, and can be changed depending on your precise needs, finances and ideas by our experienced destination specialists.

Contact one of our consultants on 020 7590 0610 to discuss how we can tailor your holiday.

Learn why Wexas is the leader in creating luxury holidays. What is tailor-made travel?

Expert advice & support

Visit us in our London office

Let our travel specialists curate the perfect holiday:

  • Inspirational ideas based on experience
  • Established for over 50 years
  • Tailor a holiday to your precise requirements
  • Personalised quotes and documentation
  • In-depth Wexas travel guides

Every step of the way

Every step of the way

Our services are with you from start to finish:

  • Dedicated personal consultants
  • Wexas Travel App
  • Free airport lounges on qualifying bookings
  • Care and guidance pre, post and during holiday
  • Full financial security: ABTA & ATOL protected