The barrels are used to light a sizzling bonfire
There are many places in the UK that locals and tourists visit in order to celebrate New Year’s Eve.
Whether it’s the fresh northern breeze of Edinburgh or the southern coast of Looe, many top cities put on a show in order to bring in the new year.
Whilst fireworks are the main staple as clocks strike midnight, there are other attractions that people get involved in.
There are also longstanding traditions such as carrying flaming barrels in Allendale that add an extra spark to the party.
After the Christmas rush, families want to get away for the remainder of the festive period. So, choosing one of these cities is the perfect way to start a fresh new year.
DESIblitz lists the top five UK cities to celebrate New Year’s Eve.
One of the best destinations that come to mind when thinking of New Year’s Eve is Edinburgh – Scotland’s hilly capital.
The city is a tourist attraction all year round but it welcomes an abundance of guests around New Year’s Eve for its world-renowned Hogmanay celebrations.
‘Hogmanay’ is actually the term given to New Year’s Eve in Scotland. But it also stands for the three-day celebration that locals and guests can involve themselves in.
It starts on December 30 each year and Edinburgh bursts into life with torchlight processions, street parties, pop performances, fireworks, and much more.
As the countdown begins on December 31, everyone joins in a national sing-along.
Here, you join hands with families, friends, and even strangers you just met in order to commemorate the occasion.
On New Year’s Day, hilarious memories are created with the Loony Dook – a nippy dip in the River Forth. This is one extravaganza not to miss!
Cornwall is one of the most popular cities to celebrate New Year and many people flock to the town of St Ives to party.
The once quiet city was only home to local celebrations but they have made a name for themselves by being the third largest fancy dress celebration after London and Edinburgh.
With an increasing reputation, people fill the streets of St Ives in order to show off their costumes and enjoy the atmosphere.
After all, there aren’t too many places where you can watch fireworks over the harbour and rejoice in happiness.
Cornwall is one of the most visited places in the UK because of its quiet beaches and charming seaside towns. St Ives is no different.
The picturesque town will help make the New Year’s Eve celebrations much more memorable and the sound of waves in the morning is splendid.
Of course, the most iconic destination in the UK around the holidays is London.
Every year, the capital city hosts a mega fireworks display at midnight above the Embankment and the River Thames.
People shout out the countdown and as Big Ben rings, there are waves of applause and cheering as the colourful performance starts.
But, the show begins hours before. Central London is beaming with busy crowds and visitors from all around the world.
Pubs, bars, restaurants and roads are buzzing with people taking photos, having drinks and excited to bring in the new year.
Aside from the fireworks, London is alive with live musicians, street parties and local food vendors.
So, you can really make this day your own!
For New Year’s Day, spend the day shopping at Harrods, get lost in exploring the city or enjoy a relaxing brunch with friends.
Perhaps the most unique celebrations lie in Allendale which is in Northumberland.
Allendale hosts the mesmerising Tar Bar’l fire festival for the last 160 years and sure enough, it’s one of the “hottest” events going.
As described by Visit Northumberland, the age-old tradition sees:
“45 men, sporting colourful fancy dress and soot-covered faces, carry whiskey barrels filled with burning hot tar in a dazzling procession through the town.”
As rules go, each man must have been born in the Allen Valleys and taken on the reigns from previous generations.
The procession reaches the town centre just before midnight and the barrels are used to light a sizzling bonfire and everyone shouts “be damned to he who throws last”.
As the flames get high, music and dancing fill the streets.
If you’re looking for a way to make the New Year’s Eve celebrations a little more different this year, then this is the place for you.
As previously mentioned, Cornwall is a top city for locals and tourists to go to, and just like St Ives, Looe is another town beaming with festivals.
Like many of the New Year’s Eve bashes, Looe focuses on fancy dress and it’s the one day of the year that people feel out of place if dressed ‘normally’.
As a traditional fishing village, Looe has a variety of fresh seafood restaurants which are a great way to kick off the evening.
One of the most popular places that people love to go to is Trawlers on the Quay.
In fact, a lot of residents and groups head out early in the day to make sure they are in the atmosphere and singing.
Pubs are open from early to host a variety of diverse people and the fireworks display is also one to behold, especially considering it’s on the beach.
Not many people can say they saw such a sparkling show on the beach in the UK.
These cities show why the UK is one of the top places to go visit for New Year’s Eve.
There are many events, parties and gigs going on and a lot of attractions that people flock to in order to make the occasion special and memorable.
Likewise, many of the cities are easy to travel to if you reside in the UK. But, it’s recommended to put aside some travel time so you’re not stuck in traffic or delays.
Make this New Year’s Eve a unique one by mixing things up with these iconic cities.