At the turn of the year, people gather to celebrate the previous 12 months and look forward to what lies ahead. New Year’s Eve is a special time, one that sees millions of people propping up bars, dancing in streets, and spending time with loved ones.
Across Scotland‘s towns and cities, the occasion is known as Hogmanay, with origins reaching back to the celebration of the winter solstice among the Vikings, which saw wild parties in late December. Edinburgh is the Hogmanay capital, lit up by lights and fireworks, turning into one enormous party, with similar scenes to be found in Glasgow and Aberdeen. Many other areas, including Stonehaven and Shetland, have long-established traditions that they honour once a year.
Whether you prefer raucous celebrations that run into the early morning or simply want a memorable event to mark the turning of the calendar, Scotland has a new year break for you.
Scotland’s most famous celebration takes place in its capital city. The streets of Edinburgh are adorned with light over several days, before and after the night itself, with events including concerts, fireworks and a torchlit procession through the Old Town. Originally an informal street party, the event became official in 1993, with around 100,000 tickets available ever year (priced at £28.50 this year, available only from the city’s official Hogmanay website).
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The torchlit procession happens on the night of 29 December between the Old Town and Holyrood Park, before the traditional dancing and whisky-drinking kicks off in the evening of 31 December in both the city centre (the Hogmanay Street Party) and West Princes Street Gardens (the Concert in the Gardens). There are dozens of other ticketed events throughout the city but make sure you have a good view when Edinburgh Castle lights up and the fireworks start. Once Auld Lang Syne has been sung, crowds will eventually start to disperse and head to the late-night gatherings.
Stay less than 10 minutes away from the main festivities at the Hotel Indigo, courtesy of British Airways Holidays. This elegant hotel is set within a series of Georgian townhouses within the city centre. Rooms are colourfully decorated, and…