Tips and Inspiration Best places to celebrate New Year 2018/19

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Best places to celebrate New Year 2018/19

It’s time to start planning the biggest party of the year! Whether you’re looking for the perfect party for couples, or somewhere to have New Year fun as a family, here’s our pick of the top places in the world to celebrate New Year 2018:


Best places to celebrate New Year in Europe


If you don’t mind wrapping up warm for New Year 2018, nowhere is more romantic than Paris. The city’s official public New Year’s Eve party is along the Champs-Élysées. It doesn’t start until around 9pm (remember, wrap up warm!) and is one of the liveliest places in the city on New Year’s Eve.

There’s a large outdoor party on the steps of and around the famous Sacré-Coeur giving you fantastic views of all the other parties and firework displays taking place across rest of the city.

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Tickets to the biggest firework event for New Year’s Eve in London sell out quickly, but there’s plenty of other things going on to make it a fabulous place to see in 2019. If you don’t manage to get a ticket you don’t need to miss out. Take a river cruise along the River Thames or stick to dry land in one of the many street or private parties.

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For party lovers, Edinburgh is one of the best places to celebrate New Year because the party lasts for days! Known as Hogmanay, the New Year celebrations start on December 30 with a torchlight procession, and run through January 1. There’s loads of things happening across Edinburgh, especially for families, so the city is buzzing – and busy – at this time of year. Check out ticket details here.

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Best places for families to celebrate New Year

Cape Town, South Africa

The winter weather in Cape Town makes it a perfect place to celebrate New Year for families. It’s a wonderfully contemporary city with plenty of activities and things to see to suit all ages. Take a cruise to Table Bay with fantastic views of the famous Table Mountain, or visit Robben Island, where Nelson Mandela was kept prisoner for almost 20 years.

There are also plenty of options of how to spend New Year in Cape Town. Lots of restaurants and bars host private parties with set menus and live music. Or book a boat cruise and watch the firework displays around the city from the water. The Victoria & Albert Waterfront also hosts a large public celebration which is very popular with families. Check it out here.

Read more about what Cape Town has to offer in Top 10 things to do and see in Cape Town.

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Walt Disney World Resort, Orlando

Nowhere throws a (family-friendly) New Year’s Eve bash quite like Walt Disney World Resort! There’s two huge firework displays at Epcot and Magic Kingdom Park, as well as loads of dinner or drinks packages at all the park’s restaurants. For the full Walt Disney World Resort New Year experience, book into one of the resort’s hotels. There’s more than a dozen to choose from, including some of the firm favorites such as Four Seasons Resort Orlando which is one of the most popular with families.

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Sydney, Australia

The clock strikes midnight in Sydney earlier than in most other cities so if you want to be amongst the first people in the world to celebrate, this is the place to be! And if over-the-top firework displays are your thing, Sydney is definitely one of the best places to celebrate New Year – it puts on one of the largest displays in the world. It’s considered a very family-friendly celebration and one of the highlights is the flotilla of boats which pass down the Sydney Harbour as part of the celebrations.

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Best places for couples to celebrate New Year

Sri Lanka

The key thing that makes Sri Lanka one of the best places to celebrate New Year is the climate. Depending on where you go, you’ll find warm days and cool evenings that make it the perfect New Year vacation destination.

Lots of the island’s bigger hotels host large parties with huge firework displays and elaborate dinners. You can relax on the beach in the day and see in the New Year in style! If you’d prefer a laid-back New Year’s Eve, head to a beach town by Arugum Bay for a budget celebration.

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New York, USA

As far as the best ‘famous’ places to spend New Year’s Eve go, Times Square in New York has to be top of the list! It’s featured in many a movie and TV show, and attracts more than a million people every year.

The event is free, but incredibly popular so you need to arrive early to get a good spot. The party features everything from music concerts and wedding ceremonies to end-of-year news roundups and the famous lowering of the Times Square glitter ball.

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Lisbon, Portugal

Lisbon is still relatively new in terms of European tourism, especially when compared to the likes of Paris or London. Because of this, it is easily one of the best places to celebrate New Year, especially if you’re a couple into food and culture! The main event is at Praça do Comércio, the stunning central square by the Tagus River, which hosts the main firework display and countdown to midnight. If you want to stay in Lisbon and have excellent views over the city, consider a hotel such as Solar dos Mouros inside the city’s castle walls.

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Best places to celebrate New Year in the UAE


You can see the best of the Dubai New Year fireworks from almost anywhere in the city. The biggest festivities are usually around the Burj Khalifa,  Address Hotel, The Palm and the Burj Al Arab.

The best views of this year’s Downtown Dubai Light Up 2018 are from the base of the Burj Khalifa by the Dubai Fountain, and by Souk Al Bahar. Or if you want to avoid the New Year crowds, book a stay at one of these hotels:

Address Dubai Mall

Dusit Thani Dubai

Armani Hotel Dubai

Ramada Downtown Dubai

If it’s the biggest bangs you’re after, the Burj Al Arab will be the best place to celebrate New Year. If you don’t fancy booking a night in the hotel, you can see them for free from Kite Beach and Jumeirah public beach. Alternatively, book a table at a restaurant at the Madinat Jumeirah or even better (especially as it means you can avoid Dubai New Year’s Eve traffic madness!) stay at one of these nearby hotels:

Jumeirah Al Qasr

Mina A’Salam

Jumeirah Al Naseem Madinat Jumeirah

Abu Dhabi

There are two main choices when it comes to the best place to celebrate New Year 2018 in Abu Dhabi: Yas Island and Abu Dhabi Corniche.

Yas Island holds its own fireworks display every year and is one of the best places to celebrate New Year in Abu Dhabi. There are lots of hotels on the island to suit every budget, from the fancier Yas Hotel Abu Dhabi to less expensive Yas Island Rotana. Lots of the hotels offer special holiday deals so if you want to make a night of it, you likely won’t break your bank!

Alternatively head to the Abu Dhabi Corniche for the NYE Countdown Village which features concerts, performances and, of course, fireworks. If you’re looking for a family-friendly event on Abu Dhabi island, this is the place to be.

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Looking for more inspiration for your 2019 vacations? Check these out:

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*Published December 2018. Prices correct at the time of publication but may be subject to change and/or availability.