Top 10 Travel Destinations to Ring in the New Year

Whether you prefer to sit at home in front of your TV to watch the world go mad on New Year’s Eve, or you like to be smack dab in the middle of all the action in any given city, the following are Knowledge That Travels Top 10 Travel Destinations to Ring in the New Year! What’s great about this yearly final countdown event is that the entire world (well, almost) gets together and celebrates the beginning of a New Year. Resolutions are made (and barely ever followed) but all of that doesn’t matter because celebrating New Year’s Eve and the first official day of the year in the Gregorian calendar is legendary!

1. New York,  NY: Arguably known as the most famous and widely celebrated New Year’s Eve celebration, watching the world-famous ball drop in animated Times Square is a truly unforgettable, once in a lifetime experience. Around 1 Million people stream to Times Square each year to partake in one of the world’s largest New Year’s Eve celebrations.

2. Las Vegas, NV: What happens in Vegas, stays in Vegas, and New Year’s is no exception to this adage. Imagine an already bustling city that comes even more alive on New Year’s Eve. The world-famed Fremont Street Experience hosts its annual street bash illuminating an already light-saturated city with fireworks! Up to 300.000 people attend this celebration making it one of the most striking New Year’s experiences around.

3. Niagara Falls, Canada: Though not marked by fame as some of the other city hosts, the Niagara Falls set a breathtaking scene for a spectacular fireworks show that is held each year in Queen Victoria Park.

4. Madrid, Spain: Here, the city’s population (and tourists) head to the center of the city to the famous Puerta del Sol square, where the countdown is followed on a large clock sitting atop Casa de Correos. In Spain, a longstanding tradition has it to eat grapes as the clock chimes away. With each of the clock’s 12 chimes marking the beginning of a New Year the Spanish consume a single grape (in its solid fruit form mind you, not the liquid form) for good fortune in the new year.

5. Vienna, Austria: As the music capital, Vienna is an enchanting destination to celebrate the coming of the new year. By tradition, those who wish to celebrate publicly head to the Viennese city hall , donned with dancing shoes because when the clock strikes 12, the whole crowd in the square breaks out dancing the famous Viennese Waltz, chanting Prosit Neu Jahr (Happy New Year!) Attention: if you’re heading into the first district, watch your step because fireworks are going off everywhere.

6. Rio de Janeiro, Brazil: One of the best times to travel to Rio de Janeiro is during New Years, as it is a tradition in Brazil to go to the beach as it is summer time in the Southern Hemisphere, and everyone wears white clothing. It is such an amazing experience with hope for the next year to be better for everyone, and the fireworks are beautiful, lasting almost half an hour in Copacabana.

7. Paris, France: If you want to be where all the action is, head to the famous Champs-Elysée where you can watch a spectacular fireworks show held at the Eiffel tower. Don’t forget to practice your “Bonne Année!” It’s also custom in Paris to be sprayed with Silly String, that’s French for saying “Happy New Year!”

8. Sydney, Australia: Fireworks are a must in any given New Year’s celebration ceremony and Sydney raises the bar on this one as this show by the harbor is ranked as one of the most watched shows in the world.

9. London, U.K. : Big Ben marks the highlight as he chimes away on midnight, ringing in the New Year. Spectacular fireworks can also be seen at one of London’s famous landmarks, the London Eye. River cruises along Thames are also quite popular and offer excellent vantage point views of the city’s fireworks. If the New Year’s Eve celebrations aren’t enough to quench your thirst for welcoming the New Year, you can head to the famous London’s New Year Day Parade on January 1st at 12 noon.

10. Edinburgh, U.K.: For all you New Year’s celebration junkies who can’t get enough of all the cheers and joy, Edinburgh is the place for you! Because here you have the Edinburgh’s Hogmanay, where celebrations last up to 5 days! (Tuesday 29 December 2009–Saturday 2 January 2010). There is something in store for every one and all ages at this extended New Year’s run of events!

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