5 Reasons To Visit Edinburgh’s Hogmanay for New Year’s Eve

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5 Reason to go to Hogmanay. Plus a cheeky sixth that’ll leave you haggin’ for more

New Year’s Eve is a tricky one. So much expectation coming into the evening, so much build up. Expensive plans are made early, club tickets booked. Your pre-party in the local watering hole sees your shoulder-to-shoulder with party novices, jamming up the bar while they order espresso martinis despite the thirsty, capacity crowd. Then once it’s all done and your wallet is almost dry you can join the zombie hordes fighting over the few available, inflated price taxis, or you can try your luck on the public transport apocalypse…

Or you can hit up Hogmanay, the original and the best New Year’s Eve celebration, set amongst Edinburgh’s ancient streets, where belting out Auld Lang Syne isn’t just acceptable, but mandatory, the festival being where the famous NYE song originated and was made internationally famous.

But we don’t expect you to make the journey to Scotland for that song alone, even though it is a super sweet one, so here are five more reasons why you should get up to Edinburgh for Hogmanay.

1. Whisky & Food

The Scots still haven’t pulled down their Christmas markets by Hogmanay, so you’ve got a nice, wholesome way to start your last night of the year. Food trucks, market stalls, carnival rides – all things that are made more lovely with a solid dram of whisky warming your belly.

2. Edinburgh

Photo credit: Zim Jimmi

Take a wander around Edinburgh’s old town and up to the castle. Take in the views over the city and snap some Farewell 2018 shots for the ‘Gram. Do all of that with a hip flask of whisky in your pocket, taking liberal swigs whenever the beauty gets too much.

3. Street Party

The Hogmanay Street Party features FOUR different music stages, throwing at you whatever type of music floats your boat. This year’s headliners are Franz Ferdinand, superstar DJ Judge Jules is playing, as well as Gerry Cinnamon, Meute, Vistas, Elephant Sessions, Miracle Glass Company, Trendy Wendy and the event’s hosts The Mac Twins, as well as street performers, buskers, and a silent disco where nobody can shame you for grooving out to whichever tunes are making your hips move.

4. Fireworks

Many places have fireworks, but in Edinburgh for Hogmanay there are fireworks on the hour, every hour, from 9pm until the grand midnight extravaganza which goes on for a very long time, providing ample evidence for you to steal a smooch from a Scotsman.

5. Pubs

When the street party gets too cold you can duck into any number of pubs along it, where you’re guaranteed a great mood inside, while the locals and tourists let the whisky do its job and make them ultra-social, very dancey, and the warmth will be happening from the inside with the whisky (we keep on mentioning whisky, but this is Scotland), and from the outside with the company and the actual, literal heat of the Scottish pubs.

BONUS 6. The Party Train

The private party train that will take you from London to Edinburgh with 600 fellow travellers with nothing but good times on their minds. The drinks consumed on said party train (whisky!). The post-fireworks after-party packed full of the biggest legends in Edinburgh. The private party train that will take you back to London in the morning (when it more resembles a private pass out train). The journey, for many travellers, almost triumphs the destination – and the destination is absolutely the world’s best New Year’s Eve celebration…

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Angus Graves

Angus was born on the remote Isle of Muck off the west coast of Scotland and grew up in the South Island of New Zealand. After utilizing his film degree, marketing in New Zealand, Angus ran away to Europe and joined the circus (Stoke Travel) as part of their creative content team. Having been on the sea since before he could walk, Angus has a passion for the all things wet, fishing, sailing, surfing and snowboarding, as well as the occasion landlubber adventure on a skateboard. This of course, means he fits in perfectly with Stoke, as he makes his way across all the surf camps, sunburnt destinations and sangria-soaked festivals Stoke has on offer.


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