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New Year's Eve in Europe
Ever dreamed of celebrating the arrival of the new year in one of Europe's vibrant capitals? Make a Eurail trip over the festive period and stop off for a New Year's Eve celebration to remember! But which city will it be? We've picked three New Year's favorites that you can get to with your Eurail pass.
Prague is as enchanting as European cities go, and even more so when the New Year’s spirit hits the Czech capital. Choose from a floating celebration aboard a party boat on the Vltava river – book tickets that include food, drinks, music and privileged views of the firework spectacle as the New Year rings in. Alternatively, if you want to rub shoulders with the big crowds, make a beeline for the Old Town Square and welcome the New Year in with a bang – the Czechs have a passion for setting off noisy fire crackers and rockets! For a hint of romance, head to Charles Bridge for splendid views as Prague’s magical backdrop lights up. The rest of the evening can be spent moving through the city's inexpensive bars and clubs.
Berlin is one huge party during New Year's Eve or Silvester as it is known to the German's (in celebration of St. Sylvester). Join the million locals and tourists that head to Brandenburg Gate. The evening entertainment includes thrilling light and laser shows, an impressive firework display and performances from popular bands and musicians. If you’re looking to have the cobwebs of the previous year blown out of you, a trip to Berlin's longest bridge, Oberbaumbrücke will do the trick. In short, it’s chaotic with firecrackers and fireworks coming from all directions, but it's a memorable experience for first-timers! You won’t be short of places to party the rest of the night away, whether you fancy disco tunes in a cosy bar or dark techno rattling through one of Berlin’s underground clubs.
Amsterdam has a few key spots to embrace the New Year’s celebrations, including around Museumplein, Rembrandtplein and the Leidseplein (popular squares in the city center). Oudjaarsdag (Old Year’s Day as the Dutch call it) begins with the locals ascending onto the streets, wrapped up in warm clothes and eating Oliebollen – dough balls covered in icing sugar. The Magere Brug is a bridge on the Amstel river and a favorite place to wave goodbye to the old year and cheer in the new one. Ooh and aah as the pyrotechnic show lights up the Amsterdam sky. There’s a party atmosphere bursting out of bars and clubs all over the city – many are ticketed so book in advance to avoid being left out in the cold. And, if after all that you’re feeling fit the next day, you can join the thousands of Dutchies for the New Year's Day dip as they charge into the icy waters of the North Sea. The largest and most famous event is in Scheveningen.