New Year’s Eve in London has made a name for itself as the best that Europe has to offer, and you should make a point of being there when it happens. When the clock strikes midnight, you hear Big Ben tolling, and a dazzling display of fireworks start emanating from the London Eye and the surrounding buildings.
The 10 full minutes of fireworks in 2011 reflected themes to support the 2012 Olympics, and the result was one of the best fireworks displays ever witnessed (250,000 people lined the banks of the Thames alone that night). You can rest assured that London will not let you down and will pull out all the stops in an attempt to match or even top the previous year’s exhibition. The streets are filled with revellers, and as part of the crowd, every sense is stimulated. While appreciating the visual spectacle, you listen to carefully-choreographed tunes of the moment.
The result is a synchronised melody of light and sound, creating a majestic spectacle of shapes and patterns illuminating the sky for all to witness.
The expanse of the River Thames and the surrounding areas offer you a great selection of viewing spots that will suit your preferences and circumstances. Make it a point to determine the best views in advance. Check the London Mayor’s website for announcements on tickets and closed areas. Maps should be available as well.
All around the city, parties and celebrations culminate in pubs, bars and cafes, but they usually have pre-booking arrangements, so remember to reserve a table just in case. In addition, tickets are pricier for said dates as expected.
If you’re looking for a more unusual venue, the Ministry of Sound in London was built in an unused bus depot and offers three dance floors with corresponding bars available. Fabric Bar in Clerkenwell boasts of a revolutionary “bodysonic” dance floor that vibrates accordingly to the low frequencies of the music, whilst Herbal in Shoreditch or Jewel Piccadilly in Central London could be your best bets for spotting celebrities.
If you prefer a river dinner along the River Thames, ask about the luxury cruise offered by the London Eye Barracuda, with bars inspired by the 1930’s exuding a nostalgic ambience. Bateaux London departs from Embankment Pier and offers fresh food and live entertainment.
The active types can visit the National History Museum Ice Rink for a night of skating and coffee. Somerset House is another option for ice skating, in addition to exhibits on visual arts and creative ventures in music and fashion.
During New Year’s Eve, London offers free transport on the tube and trams from 23:45 to 4:30, so you don’t have to worry about the missing the last train home. There’s a place for anybody regardless of the size of your party, family or group or colleagues. Be one with the crowd in ushering in the New Year in the most exciting way possible.
Arrange for a budget room at www.amhursthotel.co.uk and start planning the incoming New Year in London.