It’s the big one: New Year’s Eve. Maybe you’ve always thrown together legendary plans and are looking to top them this year or maybe you’re sick to death of your NYE being DOA. Fear not! We have compiled a handy guide of the best places to raise a toast to and kiss goodbye to the memories, good and bad, of an unforgettable year.

The Budget NYE

We’ve all been there. Student loan hit many moons ago and whilst you’re looking for somewhere incredible to give your Instagram a boost, your bank balance won’t quite stretch to Bali this year. Well, nae worries pet. Head north of the border and you will stumble across the New Year’s Eve paradise that is Edinburgh. The infamous “Auld Lang Syne” that English speakers across the world scream out with little cohesion come midnight didn’t come from Scotland by sheer coincidence. These guys basically invented New Year’s Eve and, boy, do they do it well. The 30th December sees crowds carry torches from Parliament Square to Carlton Hill where a firework display to rival any other gets things really going. The Edinburgh Hogmanay street party on 31st December is not to be missed though and starts the period of celebration that continues on to the next day. Stay safe during this hectic debauchery and you will have the time of your life.

The Extravagant NYE

For those looking to head somewhere a bit further afield, Sydney is calling. The sunny tourism capital of Australia has much to offer any wanderlust spirit and with the seasons being the opposite to the UK’s, what better way to blow the budget than with a barby on Bondi Beach? Whether you choose to welcome in the new start from Barangaroo Reserve or take a picnic down to one of the free viewing spots in the city (get there very early), the fireworks across the harbour are sure to send shivers down your spine. Why not extend your trip a little bit longer and really “do” Australia well? Whether that be sandboarding in Lancelin, swimming with sharks in Port Lincoln, or driving the Great Ocean Road in Victoria (travel insurance allowing), Australia will certainly offer everyone something to tick off that bucket list so grab your passport, check out visa requirements, and we can’t wait to hear about it when you get back.

The Alternative NYE

Many people are sick of doing the tried and tested and there’s no shame in that. If you’re wanting to have a story to tell that your friends definitely can’t rival, then head to Denmark. This country has a lot to offer in terms of landscape, gastronomy and tradition, and all those things come together in fabulous technicolour around NYE. Danes are only permitted to light fireworks six days of the year and with 31st December being one of those, it may be time to take cover. Head to Copenhagen but instead of dodging rogue rockets in the famous Rådhuspladsen (the Town Hall Square) try holing up in front of a TV and sampling some of Denmark’s lesser known traditions. Set yourself up for the revelry ahead by tucking in to the traditional New Year’s Eve supper. You can expect to find boiled cod with trimmings doused in a mustard sauce. The real treat however, comes with dessert. Kransekage is a layered cake made from marzipan rings likely to have you thinking about your New Year’s resolution by the time you finish your bowl. At the chimes of midnight, clamber on top of something (a sofa or chair) and physically jump into the new year much like the Danes themselves – minding not to break your leg or any family heirlooms around you.

The Foodie NYE

The foodie movement is a beautiful thing and certainly one to be relished. What better time to enjoy some excess than around the festive period? A firm favourite within British culture has to be the Italian cuisine and, to be honest, what’s not to love? Whether you head to Bologna to try the original bolognese, Naples for their world-renowned pizzas or end up in our pick, Florence, you’re sure to have the NYE of your life. Not only is every piazza of this beautiful city bursting with life and the music that only Tuscany possesses, it also holds its own in the culinary stakes. The city is bursting with good restaurants, whether they’re contemporary takes on old classics (try the Trattoria Moderna) or a retro café at the forefront of the brunch movement: Momio Firenze. You will certainly be hard-pushed not to find something delicious to sample and ring in the new year with.

With all this choice, we are sure you will find somewhere amazing to toast in the new year and, wherever you decide to go, it is important to stay safe. New Year’s Eve can be a very busy time and accidents can be avoided through proper preparation. Check out the FCO pages for information before heading abroad here, and don’t forget to have a cracker!



Emma Watkins

Student Contributor

Age: 23
Hometown: Norwich
University: University of East Anglia
Course: Modern Languages- Spanish
Most prized possession: A card I received from my sister, asking me to be my nephew’s godmother.
Most irritating habit: Blaring reggaeton music (think Despacito) at all hours, much to the disgust of my housemates
Favourite life hack: Try turning a pasta drainer upside down to avoid spaghetti falling through the holes!
Whats next?: Getting through my degree and pursuing a career in teaching or journalism- whichever happens first!