Some details may change, but year after year, these destinations around the world enjoy a well-deserved reputation for having traditionally launched a great New Year party.
Be sure to plan early for the main parts and the best viewing areas for the fireworks. Some places are paying and tickets are sometimes sold months in advance.
Best places to spend New Year’s Eve List
1. Las Vegas
Vegas is bright lights year-round, but it goes all out for New Year’s Eve. The Strip is closed off to vehicles, and pedestrians take over for an unforgettable festival. At midnight, various casinos launch an impressive barrage of fireworks off the roofs of their buildings.
2. New York
Times Square in Manhattan. It’s synonymous with New Year’s Eve across the United States. Even if you aren’t there in person, there’s a good chance you\’ve watched the famous ball drop on television. (The ball made its debut in 1907 and has been dropped each year since then, except for two years during World War II).
3. Rio de Janeiro
If you want to greet a new year with about 2 million other souls in a warm beach resort, head to Rio de Janeiro. The main gathering at Copacabana Beach traditionally features a variety of musical acts and fireworks.
Rio de Janeiro:
Stately London along the Thames always provides a remarkable backdrop for New Year’s Eve fireworks. Tickets sell out fast for the official staging area, but you may be able to see the fireworks for free from hilltops such as Primrose Hill, Parliament Hill on Hampstead Heath, Greenwich Park and Alexandra Palace.
5. Cape Town
Cape Town is one of the most beautifully situated cities in Africa — and the world. New Year’s Eve fireworks make it all the more spectacular. If you’re looking for a place with delicious food and a view of the festivities, check out Marisol, which specializes in Portuguese cuisine.
Historic Red Square in Moscow provides one of the coldest but also one of the most visually appealing settings for a New Year’s Eve fireworks display.
The Burj Khalifa in Dubai is one of the most attention-grabbing skyscrapers in the world, and it’s only more so at New Year\’s Eve. As it brings in 2019, the Burj Khalifa holds the record for world’s tallest building (2,716.5 feet), and throngs gather at the footsteps to welcome a new year with an amazing fireworks show.
Bangkok often tops roundup lists of Asia’s best nightlife cities. So of course, it’s a natural place to ring in the new year if you like crowds, noise and revelry. Bangkok’s answer to Times Square, CentralWorld Plaza is one of the main gathering spots for celebrations.
9. Taipei, Taiwan
New Year’s Eve in Taipei, the capital city of the island of Taiwan, is a visual spectacle. The city’s tallest building, Taipei 101, is the launching pad for an unforgettable fireworks show.
Sydney, Australia, is the first major international city to greet the New Year at midnight. The major fireworks display takes place at Sydney Harbour with the Opera House and Harbour Bridge providing a spectacular backdrop. Islands in the harbour or family-friendly parks on either side offer great views. A bonus for Sydney: Summer\’s just started there, and you can also take advantage of the city\’s beaches, including Manly, Bondi and Bronte.