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Party Planet

13 Dec 2017

Can you believe that 2018 is creeping up on us already? If you’re attending a New Year’s Eve party, you’ll probably pop the bubbly to rowdy singing of ‘Auld Lang Syne’. All over the world people will be celebrating the New Year in all sorts of ways...

Some cultures may celebrate New Year at a different time to 31st December, because they use a different calendar to the UK. Generally, whenever they take place, New Year traditions are designed to bring luck and good fortune in the year ahead.

Big fireworks displays... 

One of the most popular ways to celebrate seeing in the New Year is with big fireworks displays. These take place all over the world, as different countries hit midnight.

In New Zealand, crowds gather at Auckland Sky Tower in the capital for an impressive fireworks display, and the same happens in Sydney Harbour in Australia.

In Toronto in Canada, people gather in Nathan Phillips Square, while in Rio de Janeiro in Brazil, people flock to the city’s famous Copacabana beach to watch the sky being lit up by fireworks. 

Smashing plates... 

If you came out of your front door to find a load of smashed plates, you might be a bit confused. But that’s exactly what people in Denmark hope to find after midnight, as it means good luck.

So, if you were Danish, you might go and smash a plate on a friend’s doorstep to bring good luck over the next 12 months.

Eating lentils...

In Brazil, there is a tradition to eat lentils at New Year, as these represent money - meaning good fortune for the year ahead!

Dropping things...

In New York in the US, huge crowds of people head to Times Square to count down to midnight. But the thing that everyone is looking forward to is called the ball drop, which is when a glowing ball is lowered down a big flagpole, to signal the start of the new year.

As a result, other cities in the US now have their own traditions of dropping things on New Year’s Eve. In Vincennes in Indiana, people drop watermelons from high up!

Visiting friends first...

In Scotland, people go “first-footing”, which is where they aim to be the first person to step foot in their friends’ or family’s homes after the clock has struck midnight. You might take a gift if you go to do this.

Eating grapes...

When the clocks hit midnight in Spain, you’ll find people reaching for grapes. This is because there is a tradition to eat one grape each time the clock strikes at midnight. The idea is that this will bring you 12 lucky months in the year ahead.

Ringing bells...

Some countries, like Japan and South Korea, ring bells to start the New Year.

In Japan, the bells are rung 108 times, so you can expect it to be quite noisy!

Throwing furniture...

In Johannesburg in South Africa, people like to start the year without any unwanted items.

They do this by throwing old furniture out of the window.

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