10 massive New Year’s Eve parties that are worth traveling for

Valparaiso, Chile, has one of the world's best New Year's celebrations.

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Valparaiso, Chile, has one of the world’s best New Year’s celebrations.
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Marianna Ianovska / Shutterstock

  • New Year’s Eve is a time for parties around the world.
  • While Times Square’s ball drop is the United States’ signature celebration, there are plenty of others worth attending.
  • Some are in big cities like Hong Kong and Barcelona, and others are in less prominent destinations like Valparaiso and Reykjavik.

New Year’s Eve is one of the biggest global celebrations, with people throughout the world coming together with family and friends to reflect on the prior year and get excited for the coming one. While Times Square’s ball drop is the United States’ signature celebration, it’s not the only one worth traveling for.

From big cities like Hong Kong and Barcelona to less prominent destinations like Valparaiso and Reykjavik, these are the world’s best New Year’s celebrations.


Edinburgh, Scotland

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Jeff J Mitchell / Getty Images

Hogmanay, Edinburgh’s New Year’s celebration, stretches across four days and features plenty of music and fireworks.


Berlin, Germany

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Sean Gallup / Getty Images

Known for its rowdy club scene, Berlin celebrates New Year’s with its “Party Mile,” a collection of food vendors, light shows, music performances, and bars spread across two kilometers.


Sydney, Australia

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Lisa Maree Williams / Stringer / Getty Images

Sydney has the advantage of being the first major city to enter the new year. It’s also known for an enormous fireworks display near the Sydney Harbour Bridge and Sydney Opera House.


Reykjavik, Iceland

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Palmi Gudmundsson / Shutterstock

Residents of Reykjavik begin their New Year’s festivities with celebratory bonfires and continue partying throughout the night.


New York, New York

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Lucas Jackson/REUTERS

While waiting for hours in Times Square requires plenty of endurance, watching the ball drop is a signature New Year’s Eve experience.


Las Vegas, Nevada

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Bryan Steffy / Stringer / Getty Images

Las Vegas’ many clubs often book big-name musicians like Drake and Nicki Minaj to headline New Year’s Eve performances.


New Orleans, Louisiana

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Jonathan Bachman / Stringer / Getty Images

Mardi Gras isn’t the only holiday New Orleans is know for. The French Quarter has its own version of the ball drop, in which a fleur-de-lis descends on top of the Jax Brewery as the clock strikes midnight.


Valparaiso, Chile

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Marianna Ianovska / Shutterstock

Valparaiso holds a three-day celebration in anticipation of New Year’s Eve, capping it off with the largest fireworks display in Latin America. Locals are known for a unique New Year’s tradition: eating 12 grapes at midnight, wearing yellow underwear, and putting a $1,000 peso bill in one of their shoes.


Hong Kong, China

Hong Kong is known for going all-out with light and pyrotechnic displays that rival any in the world.


Barcelona, Spain

One of the liveliest cities in Europe, Barcelona’s streets are filled with locals and tourists singing and drinking in the hours before and after the New Year.