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New Year’s Eve 2022: 20 Best Destinations to Celebrate

New Year's Eve 2022: 20 Best Destinations to Celebrate
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(CNN) — From world-famous cities to lesser-known places, these are the best places in the world to ring in the New Year, offering everything from breathtaking fireworks and late-night parties to breathtaking views and traditional festivals.

For many countries, this year will mark a return to the wild celebrations of the pre-Covid years – so raise your glass and start 2023 with a bang!

Dubai

Dubai's Burj Khalifa illuminated for the 2017 New Year's Eve celebrations.

Dubai’s Burj Khalifa illuminated for the 2017 New Year’s Eve celebrations.

GIUSEPPE CACACE/AFP/AFP via Getty Images

Last year, billions of people tuned in to see the spectacular fireworks and light show at the world’s tallest building, the Burj Khalifa, according to developer Emaar. This year, organizers plan to break new records and the building will feature the world’s largest laser display, accompanied by fireworks and a synchronized water show from the nearby Dubai Fountain.

Taipei, Taiwan

NYE sees Taipei 101, the 10th tallest building in the world, lit up with one of the world’s most spectacular fireworks displays. This year’s theme is “Taipei is the Future” and 16,000 fireworks will be set off over the course of five minutes. The show is backed by laser lights and music, with an A-list of local celebrities and artists leading the countdown.

Barcelona

On December 31, 2016, New Year's Eve fireworks are lit in Barcelona, ​​​​​​Spain.

On December 31, 2016, New Year’s Eve fireworks are lit in Barcelona, ​​​​​​Spain.

PAU BARRENA/AFP/AFP via Getty Images

A city that boasts some of the best nightlife and festivals in Europe is a surefire New Year’s Eve destination. Crowds gather in Plaça d’Espanya to see the main fireworks display, and to sample a local tradition that’s not for the faint of heart, head to Plaça Catalunya, where people gather to sip cava before heading out throw the empty bottles in the middle of the square.

Cape Town

After two years in which Covid restrictions dampened New Year’s Eve celebrations, the city’s V&A Waterfront will light up with pyrotechnics and partying on December 31st. Live entertainment begins at 7pm, with Table Mountain providing a stunning backdrop to the celebrations. The Cape Malay Choirs Parade features music and dancing and begins at 9.30pm on Darling Street at the Grand Parade.

Riyadh, Saudi Arabia

riads "winter wonderland" can be seen in November 2021.

Riyadh’s “Winter Wonderland” can be seen in November 2021.

Wang Haizhou/Xinhua News Agency/Getty Images

with “Riyadh Season” Winter Entertainment Initiative, the Saudi capital is becoming a destination for New Year’s Eve. This year, it features 15 entertainment zones, including the world’s largest artificial lake, multiple fireworks displays, and a winter wonderland that runs through December 31st. Arab music stars perform at New Year’s Eve Mohammed Abdo Arena Boulevard Riyadh Cityand the city-wide Noor Riyadh Light and Arts Festival also takes place in winter.

NYC

The quintessential New Year’s Eve, Times Square in New York is packed with people on the day and the event is even streamed online for everyone to watch. The main event is the traditional Ball Drop. Since 1907, a large, crystal-covered orb, sitting on the roof of One Times Square, has descended from a flagpole in the last minute of the year, sending crowds into a frenzy.

Kiribati

An aerial view of Tarawa, the capital of exotic Kiribati.

An aerial view of Tarawa, the capital of exotic Kiribati.

Raimon Kataotao/EyeEm/Getty Images

The Pacific island nation of Kiribati is among the first inhabited places on earth to see the New Year because it is so close to the International Date Line. Some of its islands extend into the most extensive time zone on Earth: UTC+14. Traditional celebrations and events take place on all islands, with the biggest party likely to be in Kiritimati, the largest island of Kiribati.

American Samoa

This unincorporated US territory, about 3,000 miles (4,830 kilometers) northeast of New Zealand, is among the last inhabited places on earth to enter the New Year. If you have the stamina and find a way to make the journey on January 1st, you can first celebrate New Year’s Eve in Samoa – an independent country just over 80 kilometers to the west – and then travel here and do it all again the next day.

Rio de Janeiro

Despite Covid restrictions limiting celebrations, some revelers still watched the fireworks at Copacabana Beach in Rio de Janeiro last year.

Despite Covid restrictions limiting celebrations, some revelers still watched the fireworks at Copacabana Beach in Rio de Janeiro last year.

Wagner Meier/Getty Images South America/Getty Images

It’s hard to imagine a livelier, open-air New Year’s Eve party than the one held annually on Rio’s Copacabana Beach. Millions of people, many dressed in white, flock to the 2.5-mile stretch of beach to sunbathe and enjoy music and food in the summer weather. Then, at midnight, all eyes go up to witness a massive fireworks display – but in a city famous for its parties, that just signals the start of the celebrations.

Reykjavik

The Icelandic capital’s fireworks show is truly unique: rather than the city hosting an official fireworks show, citizens are encouraged to buy their own from local search and rescue teams in their biggest fundraiser of the year. So, before midnight, the city lights up with thousands of micro shows – all in all a sight to behold.

Paris

In 2017, the Arc de Triomphe was illuminated by a laser display reading

In 2017, the Arc de Triomphe was illuminated by a laser display reading “Happy New Year”.

LIONEL BONAVENTURE/AFP/AFP via Getty Images

The centerpiece of the event, aptly nicknamed the “City of Light”, takes place on the Champs-Élysées. This year’s show returns after a two-year hiatus and will once again cover the Arc de Triomphe with 3D projections from 11pm

Sydney

Sydney’s New Year’s Eve celebrations are among the most celebrated in the world, beautifully framed by the harbor and Opera House backdrop. This year there’s a double dose of fireworks: the first show starts at 9pm, inspired by sea, land and sky and part of a celebration of indigenous culture, while the main event begins around midnight with pyrotechnics being fired from the Sydney Harbor Bridge, the opera house and barges.

Lagos, Nigeria

Motorists drive past Victoria Island, Lagos on New Year's Eve 2016.

Motorists drive past Victoria Island, Lagos on New Year’s Eve 2016.

PIUS UTOMI EKPEI/AFP/AFP via Getty Images

Lagos is at the heart of Nigeria’s New Year celebrations, which are culturally and religiously diverse. This year’s New Year’s Eve, the city’s skies will come alive with midnight fireworks shows and all-night parties at venues on the city’s Victoria Island. At the island’s NOK by Alara restaurant, you can enjoy a three-course meal followed by a celebration themed ‘African Opulence’ from 11pm.

Istanbul

On December 31, 2021 people in Istanbul, Turkey celebrated New Year's Eve.

On December 31, 2021 people in Istanbul, Turkey celebrated New Year’s Eve.

Erhan Demirtas/NurPhoto/Shutterstock

On New Year’s Eve, fireworks illuminate the Bosphorus, Istanbul’s 30-kilometer waterway, and can be viewed from an overnight river cruise or from the shore. However, most people congregate in and around the tourism and nightlife hotspot of Taksim Square, and many of the neighborhoods host their own street festivals and fireworks displays.

Edinburgh

Fireworks light up the sky over Edinburgh Castle as part of the Hogmanay celebrations on December 31, 2015.

Fireworks light up the sky over Edinburgh Castle as part of the Hogmanay celebrations on December 31, 2015.

Ross Gilmore/Getty Images Europe

New Year’s Eve in the Scottish capital is synonymous with Hogmanay, a three-day event of live music, street parties and – of course – a spectacular fireworks display. Most events are chargeablebut anyone can see the fireworks that light up Edinburgh Castle and then have the experience of singing ‘Auld Lang Syne’ in the home country of its writer, poet Robert Burns.

London

The iconic fireworks show on the London Eye returns this year after a two-year hiatus due to the pandemic. Only those who managed to snag one of the 100,000 tickets will be in attendance, but many more from around the world will be watching. The show starts at midnight and is of course backed by Big Ben heralding the beginning of 2023.

Venice

In 2016, fireworks explode over the waters and canals of Venice.

In 2016, fireworks explode over the waters and canals of Venice.

Claudia Manzo/Corbis/Getty Images

The San Marco Basin hosts a charming fireworks show – but if you want to watch don’t go to St. Mark’s Square, as they can’t be seen from there, they say the city’s official website. Limited space is a factor here, and that’s why the main party of music and shows takes place off the waterfront in Mestre, the city’s mainland.

Las Vegas

You’ll be spoiled for choice when deciding to spend New Year’s Eve on the Las Vegas Strip, as many resorts boast their own fireworks displays in addition to their regular shows. About 400,000 revelers are expected on the Strip to see an eight-minute fireworks display during the Fremont time of your life Festival featuring artists like The Wailers and DJ Skribble will keep the party going until the countdown and beyond.

Koh Phangan, Thailand

For the chill crowd: A soothing sunset on Koh Phangan beach.

For the chill crowd: A soothing sunset on Koh Phangan beach.

LensoMy/iStockphoto/Getty Images

This island in the Gulf of Thailand is famous for its monthly full moon parties, and New Year’s Eve offers an uncompromising, super-charged version. Hat Rin Beach is lit up with fireworks and traditional fire shows, with music blaring non-stop from early afternoon until well into the next day. But a host of clubs in the area will be more than happy to keep the party going longer.

Tokyo

The world-famous Shibuya intersection is usually Tokyo’s equivalent of Times Square on New Year’s Eve, but the 2022 celebrations have been cancelled; Instead, you could opt for a more spiritual approach, visiting a shrine to pray for an auspicious new year or participating in a bell-ringing ritual at a temple. And if you want to mingle with the locals, watch the sunrise on the waterfront along Tokyo Bay on New Year’s Day.

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