The Best Places to go for New Year's Eve in the USA

The 9 Best Places to Celebrate New Year’s Eve in the USA (2024)

The end of the year is always a good time to set the stage for a new chapter, and what better way to welcome a new year than taking a trip to somewhere new? If you’re looking to do something different this year or simply looking for a little fun and revelry, there are tons of places to go for New Year’s in the US for festive fun.

The best New Year’s Eve destinations in the USA are sure to ring in the new year in style. From epic fireworks displays and massive parades to free concerts and quirky ball drops, it’s easy to get swept up in the holiday spirit, no matter where you celebrate.

Whether you want to chase the Northern Lights in Alaska while chugging through snow-covered mountains on a train or throw beads from a balcony on New Orleans’ Bourbon Street while sipping champagne, you’re sure to find a memorable place to ring in the new year with the ones you love.

With so many diverse New Year’s Eve destinations in the USA, you might not know where to begin. So, we’ve compiled our list of the absolute best places to go for New Year’s in the US for you. Take a trip to one of these fun and unique cities, and there’s no doubt you’ll have an amazing time ringing in the new year!

Don’t forget to check out our web story: The 9 Best Places to Celebrate New Year’s Eve in the USA

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The 9 Best New Year’s Eve Destinations in the USA

1. New Orleans

Best Places to Celebrate New Year in the US: New Orleans

New Orleans is always a good time, but this is especially true on New Year’s Eve. If you’d like to join in on the party, head over to the iconic Dick Clark Rockin’ New Year’s Eve production near JAX Brewery to see the fleur-de-lis drop or join the revelers in Jackson Square and watch the fireworks explode over the Mississippi River.

If this is your first time in New Orleans and you want a rowdy Mardi Gras-style experience, snag some Balcony Tickets so you can sip champagne while throwing beads from a balcony on Bourbon Street!  

Of course, you can always keep things intimate with a prix fixe gourmet meal at one of New Orleans’ best restaurants, followed by a champagne toast as the clock strikes midnight.  

2. Key West

Where to Spend New Year's Eve in the US: Key West

If you’re looking for warm places to go for New Year’s in the US, why not make your way south to Key West? You can spend your days diving or snorkeling before going bar hopping on the always bustling Duval Street on New Year’s Eve and witnessing one of the city’s quirky ball drops. 

See the annual conch shell drop at Sloppy Joe’s Bar, groove to live music and watch the huge key lime wedge drop at Sunset Pier, or tap into your inner pirate and take part in the annual lowering of the Pirate Wench from the mast of a schooner at Schooner Wharf Bar, to name a few!

3. New York City

Best Places to Travel New Year in the US: New York City

If you’ve always dreamed of spending New Year’s Eve in New York City, you might want to think twice about heading to cold and crowded Times Square. New York City hosts all sorts of cool annual New Year’s celebrations that will be far more fun and unique!

For an epic fireworks show, you can book a Brooklyn Bridge walking tour to get coveted views of the fireworks exploding above the Manhattan skyline. Not into tours? Head over to Prospect Park over in Brooklyn for fireworks, live music, and plenty of fun. 

For something totally different, join in on the New York Runners’ four-mile Midnight Run through Central Park or bike your way from midtown to the Lower East Side on the New Year’s Eve Ride.

From epic concerts and groovy DJ sets to posh rooftop parties and themed dance parties, there’s a reason NYC is one of the best New Year’s Eve destinations in the USA!

6. Nashville

Best Places to Travel New Year in the US: Nashville

When it comes to the best cities for New Year’s, Nashville is a top contender. At any time of year, this Southern gem is a great place to let loose stomping your boots down the Honky Tonk Highway, stuffing your face with Nashville hot chicken and biscuits, and taking in skyline views from a paddlewheel riverboat.

But head to Nashville for New Year’s, and you’ll have the chance to join in on the revelry and dance to live music at Jack Daniel’s New Year’s Eve Live: Nashville’s Big Bash at Bicentennial Capitol Mall State Park. This free event has live music, fireworks, plenty of confetti, and the city’s famous Music Note Drop when the clock strikes midnight. 

This is Nashville, so there are plenty of parties and concerts happening all over town, too. But if you want to get into the cowboy spirit, don your best boots, fringe, and cowboy hat and head over to Acme’s Disco Rodeo New Year’s Eve Party for craft cocktails and a confetti countdown.

7. Fairbanks

Best Places to Celebrate New Year in the US: Fairbanks

If you’re looking for totally unique places to go for New Year’s in the US and you’re looking for some adventure, hop on board the Aurora Winter Train in Fairbanks, Alaska.

You’ll depart from Anchorage on December 31 and chug your way through the backcountry, making the 12-hour journey to Fairbanks, where you’ll ring in the new year with a confetti-filled countdown in downtown Fairbanks. On this journey, you’ll get unreal views of the snow-covered landscape, and if you’re lucky, you’ll have the chance to spot the Northern Lights and a moose or two!

If you’d like to go all out, you have the option of adding on a flightseeing tour or a dogsledding excursion. There’s also a New Year’s Eve Dinner Train, where you can sip champagne and enjoy a special meal.

8. Boise

Where to Spend New Year's Eve in the US: Boise

It may come as a surprise, but Boise is one of the most fun New Year’s Eve destinations in the USA if you’re looking for something a little more off the beaten path. Each year, locals ring in the new year with the city’s iconic Potato Drop (yes, it’s an illuminated 17-foot potato!) at Cecil D. Andrus Park in front of the beautiful Idaho State Capitol building.

This free event also features live music and entertainment, a snow park with tubing and other snow-filled fun, a fireworks show, plenty of food and drinks, and so much more!

9. Bethlehem 

Another one of the best (and quirkiest!) places to go for New Year’s in the US is the Bethlehem PEEPSFEST in Bethlehem, Pennsylvania. This two-day festival is filled with all sorts of festive, family-friendly fun, from live music to fireworks. But the real reason to ring in the new year here is for the PEEPS Chick Drop, which sees an illuminated 400-pound PEEPS Chick descend during the countdown! 

There you have it! Our picks for the 9 best places to go for New Year’s in the US. Where will you spend New Year’s Eve this year?

Looking for more travel inspiration? Check out our favorite travel books!



  • Justine Lopez

    Justine is a writer and editor who always seems to take the unconventional route in life. She also suffers from a serious case of wanderlust!

    In 2013, she left her hometown in California and set off on a yearlong round-the-world journey with her now-husband – they never looked back. Since then, she’s lived the expat life in Indonesia, Cambodia, China, Vietnam, Mexico, and now Dubai. Along the way, she's written and edited for magazines, newspapers, and websites in Asia and beyond.

    When she's not stoking her wanderlust by working on travel articles for Wandering Wheatleys, Justine is busy caring for her many foster cats in Dubai, seeking out all the delicious vegetarian food, and taking every chance she gets to explore a new corner of the world!

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