Why anyone chooses to spend New Year’s Eve in Times Square we don’t know. You have to turn up super early to secure a spot. You have to spend hours and hours and hours waiting in the freezing cold (and rain). If you need the restroom, you can’t go lest you lose your spot. All that, just to see a giant ball drop hundreds of yards away, which you would’ve seen much better if you’d just stayed at home on the couch watching TV.
Besides, it’s a not as if the lowering of a time ball is all that unique any more. Cities all across the country have riffed on that idea. A drag queen, giant peach, human-sized pickle, over-sized pine cone, and mammoth fish will all drop to usher in the New Year.
So, we say, skip New York. With the right mix of bars/clubs, weather, places to stay and atmosphere, these five alternative New Year’s Eve cities are sure to give you a night to remember.
They say midnight is just the beginning of the party in New Orleans – no police and road sweepers ushering you away here. The 15-minute (15!) fireworks display over the river is not only spectacular, but also provides ample time to sneak a great spot at one of French Quarter’s thumping bars and live music clubs. Oh, and the renowned singles scene probably has its plus sides, too. Our featured image is by Cheryl Gerber / NewOrleansOnline.com.
San Juan (Puerto Rico)
When Travel + Leisure magazine surveys its readers about the best cities to visit at New Year’s San Juan always joins New Orleans at the top of the rankings. We would hazard a guess it’s the cocktails, cheap prices, sunshine and a hectic atmosphere that win over residents and visitors alike.
Here the weather’s mild and the parties are hot – the perfect balance. Oh, and it’s a pretty decent place to do some out activities and blow out the cobwebs on January 1.
If you’re the kind of person who normally finds NYE a little stressful then Savannah could work for you. This harbor town is known for its friendly, quaint, easy-going vibe and is packed with free events on December 31.
If NYE isn’t NYE without something dropping, then Miami’s for you. They say a quarter of a million people turn up to watch the city’s Big Orange (or Mr. Neon to his friends) drop 400 ft down the side of the Hotel Intercontinental. But for our money, it’s the incredible fireworks and laser displays over Biscayne Bay, hot clubs and gorgeous climate that make Miami a top New Year’s Eve destination.
Written by insider city guide series Hg2 | A Hedonist’s guide to…