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NYE breaks: Last-minute getaways to see in 2018

You can surprise your special someone, organise a group of friends or family, or take yourself to join an international band of revellers for an all-nighter. With top destinations just a short hop from London City Airport, there’s a huge choice of ways to see out 2017 with style. We’ve picked our seven top NYE breaks.

Do Hogmanay in Edinburgh

You can hardly mention New Year’s Eve without thinking of Edinburgh’s Hogmanay. as a huge crowd gathers for the infamous Hogmanay street party with its DJs, street entertainment and fireworks display from Edinburgh Castle. Catch Rag 'n' Bone Man headlining the Concert in the Gardens, join the Ceilidh under the Castle with its VIP bar, or go to the festive Candlelit Concert at St Giles Cathedral. Or if you’re travelling with children, join Baby Loves Disco and Bairns Afore. And for the ultimate New Year’s Day hangover cure, take a dip the freezing River Forth with the excellently-named Loony Dook.

Time it right

Book a flight to Edinburgh for Hogmanay. Flights leave several times a day, and take around an hour and a half.

Go romantic in Prague

New Year's Eve in Prague is party night. With world-famous beer, one of the city's traditional Bohemian bars makes a good first stop. You can join throngs of revellers as they move from bar to bar, while the atmosphere grows. For the spectacular firework crescendo, most people congregate down by the river, at the Old Town Square or Wenceslas Square at midnight. For a slightly different perspective, try of the popular river cruises and watch the fireworks from the water. You can also find restaurants hosting nights of all-inclusive food, drinks and dancing, or book a romantic dinner for two.

Time it right

The festive Christmas market is open until 6 January, so make the most of a few days in the Czech Republic’s beautiful capital. Flights to Prague leave daily from London City Airport.

Try something different in Reykjavik

If you’re looking for something a bit different from the usual New Year's party, Iceland’s capital promises an extraordinary experience. Very much curated by the people of Reykjavik, celebrations combine culture, myth and magic, and a pretty incredible firework display. Icelanders tend to start the evening with a festive family dinner, followed by a trip to a local bonfire. For an hour before 2330, the city streets are eerily quiet, as almost all Icelanders watch comedy show Áramótaskaupið, or New Year’s Eve Ridicule. And then come the fireworks. There’s no official display – just 200,000 people setting off around 500 tonnes of fireworks. Club and pub parties go on well into the morning.

Time it right

You can catch flights to and from Reykjavik on Sundays and Thursdays, so you can fly out on Sunday 31 and back on Thursday 4 January. For an extra-special Icelandic treat, try and catch the Pearls of Icelandic Song concert of folk-songs and hymns.

Head to clubland in Berlin

As the techno capital of the world, Berlin has a club scene that's heard to beat – and New Year is no exception. When it comes to New Year parties, you’re pretty spoilt for choice. With 24 DJs and eight dance floors, Alte Münze at the former mint is about as cool as it gets. Or try the Alte Turnhalle – a former high-school gym complex – for vibrant, non-stop partying. If you prefer something more festive, you can join over a million visitors at the colossal party around the Brandenburg Gate, with multiple stages, party tents, food, light and laser productions and fireworks.

Time it right

If you can get out there a couple of days before NYE, you can catch the last of the famous Christmas markets. Book your direct flights from London City Airport and be there in less than two hours.

Enjoy the craic in Dublin

Notoriously sociable, Dublin has ramped up its impressive array of Hogmanay-style street parties and celebrations, and firmly established itself as an excellent New Year’s Eve destination. New Year Festival Dublin runs from 30 December to 1 January, centred on Dame Street in the south city centre. Showcasing local music, arts and food, you’ll find light shows, concerts and performers. With an early evening and midnight performance, the Liffey Lights Midnight Moment is an amazing spectacle of high-flying lights and acrobatics. You can also join Dublin’s very own award-winning quartet, Kodaline, at the 3Countdown Concert at Custom House Quay. Celebrations go on into New Year’s Day.

Time it right

It couldn’t be easier to get to Dublin to join in the festivities. Book one of the many daily flights from LCY and get there in an hour. If you’ve got a bit longer to spend, there’s plenty to keep you busy.

Feast in Chambéry

Quiet, quaint, romantic and gloriously foodie, Chambéry is a very special place to see in the New Year. While many people head straight out to the slopes, this pretty Savoyard town has its own charm, and fewer tourists than nearby Geneva. Its historic centre of little shops and eateries is perfect for exploring and trying local delicacies like out-of-this-world macaroons, local meats and cheese. The fantastic daily market is well worth a visit, as well as the museums and art galleries. Perhaps the best way see in the New Year is with dinner in one of Chambéry’s best restaurants followed by a lively bar. If you can get a table at Le Carré des Sen you’re onto a winner.

Time it right

Flights leave daily in the winter season. If you fly out on Friday 29December, you’ll be there in time for the Saturday market.

Party in Amsterdam

If you fancy celebrating the end of the year in a city that knows how to party, look no further than Amsterdam. There are official celebrations in the Oosterdok and midnight fireworks from the Magere Brug (skinny bridge), and unofficial street parties all over the city. Nieuwmarkt (Chinatown), Leidseplein and Rembrandtplein are all popular central hotspots, and there are too many bars and clubs to mention with all-nighters catering for all musical tastes.

Time it right

With daily flights and just over an hour in the air, real last-minuters can hop on a flight at lunchtime on NYE, party all night and come home at lunchtime on New Year’s Day – although it’s worth staying longer if you have the time.

 

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