Every year the question arises: Where to go for New Year's Eve? Here are the best New Year's Eve destinations for an unforgettable New Year's Eve!
Whether it's an elegant New Year's dinner or a lively New Year's Eve party - the turn of the year needs to be celebrated properly! If you want to slide over in a relaxed way, it's best to look for a quiet mountain hut or a secluded house on the edge of the forest.
In all cities around the world, the New Year is ushered in with lively celebrations, masquerade balls and fireworks. The bigger the city, the more bombastic the New Year's Eve and, of course, the fireworks that go with it!
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Among the first in Sydney
Sydney is the first city with over a million inhabitants where the hands jump to midnight on 31 December. Accordingly, the New Year is duly welcomed in the south of Australia with one of the most famous New Year's Eve parties in the world. The huge New Year's Eve fireworks in Sydney are broadcast live worldwide and thus form the official start to the New Year.
The best places to enjoy Australia's only official New Year's Eve fireworks are Mrs Macquaries Point, Dawes Point Reserve under the Harbour Bridge or Beulah Street Wharf in the Kirribilli district. Most of the viewpoints are accessible for free with picnic blankets or camping chairs - the perfect setting for New Year's Eve in Sydney at 20 to 25°C!
New Year's Eve Samba at the Copacabana
New Year's Eve in the hot-blooded metropolis of Rio de Janeiro is the second biggest party of the year after Carnival. The highlight for many is the Yemanjá party on the summery Copacabana. Dressed all in white, people party to hot samba rhythms until the early hours of the morning.
The midnight fireworks display on Rio's famous beach is also one of the most spectacular. For good luck in the New Year, locals offer gifts to the water goddess by raft on the sea - one of the many New Year's Eve traditions from around the world.
Gigantic fireworks in Dubai
Not freezing during New Year's Eve fireworks also works in Dubai! Here, too, it's a balmy 25 °C in December, with plenty of sunshine and therefore good weather for swimming. Of course, the city of records doesn't let itself down at the turn of the year.
Although the year is 11 days shorter according to the Islamic calendar, Dubai is a hive of activity on 31 December - after all, enough Western tourists come to Dubai for their New Year's Eve holidays. You should definitely reserve a table for the New Year's Eve menu, as there is certainly nothing left in the centre of Dubai if you are lucky.
Tip: If you would like to toast with a glass of champagne, you should find out beforehand whether alcohol is served in the chosen establishment. This is often not the case in Dubai and alcohol consumption in public is also strictly prohibited!
Everyone then waits for the most breathtaking fireworks display in the world, centred on the Burj Khalifa, the tallest building in the world at 828 metres. The Dubai fireworks on New Year's Eve 2013 are even listed in the Guinness Book of Records as the "largest fireworks display of all time"! The best view of the spectacle of the year is from the numerous roof terraces of the hotels in Dubai Downtown.
Tip: Ideally, the view from the hotel should reach the palm island of Jumeirah. There, too, a superlative New Year's Eve fireworks display lights up the night sky.
Big Bang at Big Ben in London
Surveys confirm that London is the number one destination for many New Year's Eve revellers. No wonder, the fireworks at midnight here are among the biggest in the world and are not called the "Big Bang" for nothing.
The best view of the spectacle is from the banks of the Thames at the Houses of Parliament and the London Eye. Tickets are even sold for the best seats! Afterwards, the party is on every street corner and in every pub!
Tip: Don't sleep too late, because on 1 January the London New Year's Day Parade continues at 12 noon, with thousands of acrobats, artists and even the royal steeds.
Open Air New Year's Eve in Berlin
In Berlin, the Straße des 17. Juni at the famous Brandenburg Gate is the centre of the New Year's Eve celebrations. It then transforms into one of the biggest open-air New Year's Eve parties in the world. The party mile disappears under thousands of people dancing, drinking, singing and laughing in anticipation of the turn of the year. Beer tents, fairgrounds, bands, DJs and other shows shorten the waiting time until midnight.
After the live countdown, a bombastic fireworks display will be set off. Afterwards, the party continues in the city's numerous techno clubs until the early hours of the morning. The best view of the fireworks is from Drachenberg or Lübarser Höhe!
Tip: New Year's Eve is celebrated EVERYWHERE in Berlin! With the New Year's Eve ticket, especially the motivated can make a pilgrimage from club to club while party hopping.
Masks on Sylt
Germany's fourth largest island with almost 2,000 hours of sunshine per year and almost 40km of sandy beaches is normally a destination for summer holidays, but Sylt is also worth a trip on New Year's Eve! Here, however, it is not the fireworks that are spectacular, but the procession of the so-called "Omtaakelten".
These figures, masked beyond recognition, take part in the traditional New Year's Eve masquerade between the villages of Keitum and Morsum. They mock themselves and the audience with mocking verses that tell stories from the villages and the past year. And many a person plunges into the ice-cold North Sea the next day at the traditional New Year's bath.
New Year's happiness in Rome
Slipping into the new year with pasta and red wine - thousands of New Year's Eve tourists celebrate the turn of the year in the Eternal City. New Year's Eve highlights in Rome include the free evening concert at the Circus Maximus, live music at the Piazza de Popolo or various street parties on the Via dei Fori Imperiali.
At midnight, the night sky is lit up by countless fireworks, the most spectacular of which is probably fired over the Roman Forum. Afterwards, the tossing of a coin into the famous Trevi Fountain ensures special luck in the new year.
Tip: The best view of the Roman fireworks is from Gianicolo Hill or Pincio Hill near Piazza de Popolo.
Waltz in Vienna
Austria's capital is spinning into the new year in three-four time. If you've always wanted to learn the Viennese waltz - now's your chance, as waltz lessons are held outdoors in the afternoon on the Graben, the famous shopping mile in Vienna's city centre.
Passive culture and dance lovers are best off at Herbert-von-Karajan-Platz at the end of Kärntner Straße. Here, traditionally and completely free of charge, the Strauss operetta "Die Fledermaus" is broadcast live from the Vienna State Opera.
When night falls, Vienna's New Year's Eve Trail comes to life. The annual party mile connects more than 70 show stages, punch stands and bars and is the perfect sightseeing tour through Vienna's magnificent city centre.
At midnight it gets loud once again. Then the Pummerin at St. Stephen's Cathedral and the huge New Year's Eve fireworks over the City Hall and the Ferris wheel announce the turn of the year. The motto is "Alles Walzer" ("Everything Waltzes") and people wish each other "A guads Neix" ("Happy New Year")!
Christmas finale in Paris
In Paris, there is still a bit of Christmas spirit on New Year's Eve, as many Christmas markets are open until 1 January! In addition to punch and mulled wine, sparkling wine and champagne are then served and the atmosphere is more elegant and full of anticipation.
The best spots with the most beautiful fireworks are at the top 10 sights of Paris, such as the Champs-Élysses, the Eiffel Tower or the snow-white church Sacré-Cœur. From its hill, Montmartre, there is a sensational view over the city - an ideal vantage point for midnight!
With Lapland's Northern Lights into the New Year
In the arctic landscape of Laponia (Lapland) in the far north of Sweden, New Year's Eve is celebrated away from the crowds, but with pure nature. There is hardly a more romantic (and colder) way to start the New Year than on a dog or reindeer sled. And there's no need for fireworks, because with a little luck the mystical northern lights will draw a spectacular New Year's greeting in the night sky.