No event around the year invokes as much excitement in people as the new year does. Right from children to adults, everyone is immersed in festive spirit. After all, starting a new journey always comes with a thrill and exhilaration which makes it a much awaited time of the year. New Year 's celebrations are massive and grand across the globe and it's a delight to experience these unique traditions and vibrant gatherings. Be it the spectacular view of fireworks over the Sydney Harbour or classic ball drop at Times Square, experiencing New Year parties around the world is no less than a cultural exchange and a treat for travelers. So check out the amazing facts, traditions and best places to celebrate New Year.
History of New Year
The tradition of celebrating New Year is about 4,000 years old when the festivities began in ancient Babylon. Though it was celebrated somewhere during March end on the first new moon day when there was an equal amount of sunlight and darkness. Babylonians used to celebrate New Year as Akitu which spanned over 11 days and all these days were marked with unique rituals, ceremonies and celebrations such as crowning a new king, celebrating the victory of Marduk, (Sky God) over Tiamat (Sea Goddess) etc.
Later in 46 BC, the Roman king, Julius Caesar instituted January 1 as the first day of the year. He also introduced the Julian calendar where Janus was the first month which is now known as January. Janus was basically the Roman God who had two faces and could see the past and the future simultaneously and which is why the first day of Janus month became synonymous to the day when we can contemplate our past year and make future resolutions. During this time, New Year celebrations were marked by various sacrifices to God Janus. However, decorating homes, exchanging gifts and hosting parties also became popular during this time.
10 Best Places to Celebrate New Year
New Year is celebrated worldwide with great enthusiasm, however, here’s a list of the top 10 places in the world where new celebrations are electrifying and totally worth witnessing. Take a dekko!
1. Eiffel Tower, Paris
One of the most romantic escapades in the world, Eiffel Tower in Paris is the best place to celebrate New Year especially with your soulmate or someone you are in love with. From countdown at Champs-Elysees to spectacular fireworks at Eiffel tower, there is an electrifying vibe at all these places in Paris that keeps you hooked. Also offering a great opportunity for clubbing, cabaret shows and whatnot, there are a whole lot of indulgences that will make your New Year in Paris a memorable affair.
How to Reach Paris:
Paris is one of the most prominent destinations and is well connected to all parts of the world through air. You can consider Roissy Charles de Gaulle which is the nearest airport and the busiest airport with a heavy influx of travelers from across the world.
2. Sydney Harbor, Australia
The iconic fireworks at Sydney Harbor in Australia are always talk of the town. Reckoned as one of the best places for New Year celebrations, this place is where you can grab the most stunning view of fireworks. You can view this enchanting site from Coast Harbor Cruise along with drinks, and food. You can also consider dining out at gorgeous waterfront restaurants to enjoy the firework views.
How to Reach Sydney:
To reach this beautiful place in Australia, you will have to book a flight to Kingsford Smith International Airport which is well connected to many domestic and international flights. After deboarding, you can either board a suburban train, hop on to a shuttle bus or simply hire a cab to reach your destination in Sydney.
3. Times Square, New York
One of the best New Year destinations in the world, New York is truly a heaven. From the mesmerizing view of Times Square Ball Drop to striking fireworks at Central Park and New York Harbor, the celebration in this part of the country is totally worth witnessing. Also famous for its incredible clubbing scene, New York is a perfect place for party animals. You can also enjoy a luxury dinner cruise or book a table at any rooftop restaurant to enjoy extravagant New year soirees in New York.
How to Reach New York:
New York is one of the busiest states in the world that is marked by a large number of tourists from across the world. You can take a flight to John F. Kennedy International Airport that is located in Queens.
4. Burj Khalifa, Dubai
Celebrating New Year at the tallest building in the world is definitely one of the best experiences and you can live all your New year's dreams in Dubai. The light and water show at Dubai Fountain, amazing shows at Burj Khalifa, uninterrupted views of Downtown fireworks, lavish dinner cruise, live performances at Dubai Opera are some of the attractions for New Year in Dubai which fascinates visitors.
How to Reach Dubai:
You can easily fly to Dubai as it has a strong air network with almost every country in the world. You can book a flight to Dubai International Airport which is also considered as the busiest airport in the UAE.
Reckoned as one of the best party destinations, Goa is a highly recommended place in India to celebrate New Year. Right from its famous Hilltop New Year party to the exciting Sunburn festival, there are a lot of amazeballs for the travelers. You can also revel in glorious beach parties, casinos, bonfires and cruising for new year celebrations.
How to Reach Goa:
This party destination in India is well connected to all major countries through airways. Dabolim International Airport serves all domestic and international flights and is about 30 km away from Panjim which is the capital city of Goa.
6. Big Ben, London
Famous for its grand new year celebrations, taking part in the countdown party at Big Ben London is a memorable experience. London is also famous for its eye-catching fireworks on the banks of river Thames. Apart from grabbing a free view from Alexandra Palace, Primrose Hill or Greenwich Park, one can also indulge in a thrilling champagne soiree at this best place for New Year's eve.
How to Reach London:
Being one of the most popular tourist places in the world, London has good connectivity with the rest of the world through airways. The nearest airbase is Heathrow Airport which is located at a distance of 25 kms from central London and caters to a large number of domestic and international flights.
7. Rio de Janeiro, Brazil
Marked by a massive gathering, Copacabana Beach Party in Rio de Janeiro is one of the best places in the world for New Year celebration. Apart from taking part in the most happening beach parties, iconic carnivals, one can also enjoy a stunning view of fireworks. Also, there are special rituals like jumping seven waves, making seven wishes, offering flowers and floating candles to Goddess Iemanja etc which are quite unique to discover.
How to Reach Rio de Janeiro:
Galeao - Antonio Carlos Jobim International Airport serves as the nearest airport to the city which is connected to domestic as well as international destinations. Since this place is known for its iconic year-end carnivals, prices really spike up. So make sure you make bookings for flights and hotels in Rio much in advance.
8. Hawaii, USA
Famous for its fascinating New Year bash, Hawaii in the USA is a place to be if you wish to enjoy the most exciting New Year’s eve. Right from great party experience, scenic beaches, dropping of objects, mind blowing fireworks at Poipu Beach Park, lavish cocktail cruise at Lahaina Harbor, there’s a lot to discover at this Paradise of the Pacific where fun on New Year’s eve is a sure thing.
How to Reach Hawaii:
To reach Hawaii, you will have to take a flight to Honolulu Airport (HNL) which is well connected to all parts of the world. From there you will need to take a connecting flight which takes about 40 minutes to reach the breathtaking island of Hawaii.
9. Amsterdam, Netherlands
While Dam Square, Nieuwmarkt and Rembrandtplein buzz with throbbing parties, Amsterdam Light Festival is another fascinating event that makes Amsterdam a perfect haven for grand New Year celebration. During this time of the year, canals and roads are all illuminated with fairy lights which amp up the breathtaking ambience of this enchanting destination. People also run into the chilly waters of Amstel River to welcome the New Year in Amsterdam which is yet another unique sight for the tourists.
How to Reach Amsterdam:
One of the popular tourist destinations in Europe, Amsterdam is very well connected to the rest of the world through airways. Schiphol Airport which is about 15 km from the main city.
10. Las Vegas, Nevada
The party capital, Las Vegas is one of the most popular places in the world that is great for New Year celebrations. Right from crazy nightlife, spectacular fireworks, lively casinos, amazing pubs, vibrant events, strip shows and whatnot, this place in Nevada is known for its best party scene. Also, you can consider visiting the Las Vegas Strip where massive celebration takes place during new year and is a top attraction for many party animals.
How to Reach Las Vegas:
There are 2 airports in Las Vegas namely McCarran International Airport and Henderson Executive Airport. The former connects Las Vegas to destinations across the world while latter majorly caters to private and chartered flights.
Frequently Asked Questions Related to New Year
Q. Why is New Year's celebrated?
A. New Year is celebrated to mark the new beginnings with positive and happy vibes. The tradition became prevalent after Julius Caesar instituted January 1 as the first day of the year.
Q. Who celebrates the New Year first?
A. Tonga in the Pacific Island is the first place that celebrates New Year in the world. This tiny archipelago celebrates New Year at 10am GMT on December 31st every year.
Q. Which country will last enter 2023?
A. Baker Island is the last place on earth that enters into a new year at 12pm GMT on January 1
Q. Which country does not celebrate New Year?
A. New Year is a worldwide celebration, however, there are countries like Israel, China, India, Iran, Korea etc that celebrate the new year in their religious ways on the days of the year according to their respective calendars.
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