The New Year can inspire hope, expectations and excitement in visitors to the capital, but the crowded, rowdy bars and parties can often be an anticlimax. One thing that is never a letdown when ringing in the New Year in London is its iconic fireworks display – a must-see extravaganza.
The 15-minute spectacle over the Westminster area begins at midnight, with fireworks set off from the London Eye and Big Ben. However, due to the large crowds that swarm to the riverside during the day, it is difficult to get a good spot or much room to settle in for the evening. So here are some alternative ideas to ensure you get a good seat for the show.
There are plenty of sky-high venues across London, and many will be putting on a night to remember. Get out of the cold air into a trendy skyline bar to ring in the New Year in in style. A great option this year is Zinc on the 31st floor of the landmark Centre Point building – just a 15-minute walk from Strand Palace Hotel – where there will be champagne and canapés followed by dancing until 4am. The rooftop of nearby Searcy’s champagne bar is another of our top picks, and has an excellent view of the fireworks over the stunning St Paul’s Cathedral.
Go for a cruise
If you’re not that comfortable with heights then perhaps bobbing along the River Thames will be more your style. There is always a brigade of cruise boats to choose from lining the river and disappearing into the distance each New Year’s Eve. From black tie three-course dinner ferries to party boats complete with a DJ, there are plenty of options to choose from, and when the fireworks light up the night sky, they also create spectacular reflections in the water, surrounding the boats with bright, effervescent colours.
Top tip: You’ll find a selection of cruise options here.
Get on the green
There is always a great buzz in London’s central Royal Parks on New Year’s Eve, and they are always far less crowded than the riverside. From Strand Palace Hotel, it is only a 15 to 20-minute walk to Green Park and St. James’s Park, where you’ll enjoy a great view of the spectacular fireworks. If you fancy chancing a cab or public transport on New Year’s, there are some other fantastic open-air options, including Primrose Hill, where you can take your own bottle of bubbly and even a picnic to ring in the New Year. It’s a perfect spot as you can enjoy panoramic views of the fireworks display and the river.
If you’re looking for hotels near the River Thames and London’s central bars and parks this New Year’s Eve, look no further than Strand Palace Hotel. We’re proud to be located right in the heart of London.
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