Looking for a not-so-typical city for your holiday celebration? Ring in the new year in one of these gorgeous, vibrant cities. From island cocktail cruises to snowy ice bars, surely, we’ve found the perfect spot for you to start your year off right.
So, finish your list of New Year’s resolutions and book some plane tickets because it’s time to celebrate.
Budapest, the stunning capital city of Hungary, hosts a variety of cruises on the river Danube for an exceptional view of the fireworks show. Whether you want a dinner party and live entertainment or a late-night open bar, these views of the Hungarian Parliament Building will leave you speechless. Looking for some Central European culture? Try one of the many traditional Hungarian restaurants downtown. For music lovers, there are a wide variety of holiday concert venues available, from churches to operas, and even the Danube Palace, there is something for everyone.
San Francisco, California
Ready to celebrate New Year’s Eve California style? San Francisco has everything from waterfront fireworks to live performances and hotel parties. Take a stroll through the scenic Marina District and check out some of the lively pubs and restaurants open for the holiday. Then, head over to Marina Green Park for breathtaking views of the Golden Gate Bridge at night. If you’re looking for a party, hotels in the centrally located Union Square area host some of the biggest New Year’s Eve bashes in San Francisco. Located 10 minutes away, the best views of the fireworks can be found at the Embarcadero waterfront. To continue celebrating after the show, check out one of the many concerts in the area and dance the night away.
Auckland, New Zealand
Head over to the city of Auckland, located on New Zealand’s North Island, for Wondergarden, a family-friendly music festival. Featuring an energetic lineup, traditional street food and children’s activities, it is a delightful place to spend your holiday celebration. At night, catch the fireworks show over the iconic Sky Tower. If you’re feeling extra adventurous, there is even a New Year’s Eve camping festival 45 minutes from downtown. Home to an abundance of natural wonders, such as an extinct volcano, Auckland is a wonderful getaway for city lovers and outdoor enthusiasts alike.
Visit Chile’s scenic capital city, Santiago, for an unforgettable celebration. Surrounded by snow-capped mountains, this Latin American city is Chile’s largest city and full of prime party locations for your new year. Have some empanadas at a traditional Chilean restaurant and then stroll over to the Entel Tower area for a bustling street party until the fireworks show at midnight. Don’t forget your dancing shoes. This city knows how to eat, drink and dance well into the night.
From countdown parties to fine dining with a view, Singapore has everything you need to have the most lavish New Year’s Eve yet. The fireworks display over Marina Bay is a must-see. Make reservations at a rooftop restaurant in the city to catch the spectacular show while you dine. Walk over to the Marina Bay Carnival for some churros and enjoy the live entertainment, thrill rides and game booths. If a beach party is more your style, Siloso Beach hosts a lively outdoor dance party. With an impressive selection of luxury hotels, this Southeast Asian island does not disappoint.
Feeling tropical? The Ma’alaea Harbor area of Maui has so much to offer for New Year’s Eve. Have dinner, grab a drink and relax on a harbor cruise complete with a champagne toast at midnight. There are other ways to see the fireworks show from the harbor, like a luxury catamaran sail into the night. Celebrate like the locals and attend one of the special luaus on the island, like the one at Hyatt Regency in Lahaina, about 30 minutes from Ma’alaea Harbor. Tired of wearing your snow gear on New Year’s Eve? Maui has just what you need to ring in the new year the Hawaiian way.
Québec City, Canada
Québec City is Canada’s very own winter wonderland. From carnival rides to an Ice Bar Crawl, this celebration is perfect for families and club-goers alike. Take a stroll down the Grande Allée to grab dinner and drinks at one of the many bars and restaurants. Don’t worry -there are plenty of heated terraces and outdoor fireplaces to keep you warm along the way. The Parc de la Francophonie, also located on the Grande Allée, boasts thrill rides, sweet treats and a Ferris wheel for the perfect view of the city. Head over to Place de l’Assemblée-Nationale for a dance party with live music. The fireworks show can be seen from any of these locations. Looking for something to do on New Year’s Day? Québec City is home to the only ice hotel in North America, Hotêl de Glace. This resort hosts a yearly Winter Playground with a variety of exciting snow sports.
About the writer: A culture enthusiast and self-proclaimed foodie, Rachel Gresh was born in Pennsylvania and began traveling the country at a young age. Currently based in Florida, Rachel’s nomadic lifestyle has allowed her to go on more adventures, at home and abroad, than she ever thought possible.