Fun Facts - New Year's Eve Around the World

People around the world celebrate the New Year in different ways, and even on different days! Read about some of the more interesting New Year's celebrations.

Our students in Australia and New Zealand are able to enjoy a warm, sunny New Year's Day, as it happens during the summer. Many people celebrate with picnics on the beach and campfires, and there are fireworks at Sydney Harbour (Australia) and in Auckland (New Zealand) on New Year's Eve.

New York City has some of the most famous New Year's Eve celebrations, with fireworks and a crystal ball dropping at midnight in Times Square. People wait for almost an entire day in order to see the ball drop first-hand, and listen to the musical performances in the hours ahead.

Most other cities in the U.S. have special celebrations, too, and New Year's Eve is the busiest day of the year at the Disney theme parks in Florida and California.

Some of London's iconic landmarks become the focus in the New Year's Eve celebrations, with fireworks over the River Thames. People line the river and the world-famous bridges, including the Millennium Bridge and Tower Bridge to watch Big Ben count down to the new year.

In Scotland, New Year's is a huge, traditional celebration also known as Hogmanay. Edinburgh has the largest celebration, and it is a 3-day event including musical performances, fireworks, nightwalks and street parties. New Year's in Scotland is a bigger occasion than Christmas!

In Russia, many families give presents on New Year's Day, and some even have New Year's trees rather than Christmas trees.

Brazil's Ano Novo (or New Year) is one of the main holidays in the country, and people dress in white to bring good luck for the new year. Some would say that the world's best New Year's fireworks can be seen at Copacabana beach in Rio de Janeiro.

Many cultures celebrate their New Year on a different day from January 1. China celebrates the Lunar New Year, and it's known as Spring Festival.  It begins on the second new moon after the winter solstice on the Chinese calendar.

In India, each religious group has its own date for the beginning of the new year.

The Jewish new year begins on Rosh Hashanah, which is on the first two days of the seventh month of the Hebrew calendar.

Did you know? The first location in the world to welcome each New Year is Kiritimati, also known as Christmas Island, in the Pacific Ocean.

If you could spend the day anywhere in the world, where would it be?  Let us know with a comment below!

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