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The top New Year's Eve road trip destinations

Looking to get away for a New Year's Eve break? Look no further than these top destinations.

We are blessed in the UK to have so many options when it comes to getting away for a staycation, especially as most places are within a good driving distance.

It's even more special that so many different places have such different New Year's Eve traditions and if you've ever experienced any of them, you will know just how magnificent they are.

The events range from world-class firework displays, huge bonfires, music, dancing, and singing in the streets. Not only that but they are all in completely unique settings; on the beach, in the country, in the city. Not one city is the same as the other.

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You don't even have to be right in the heart of the action either. You could be sitting at the top of a hill with friends watching the fireworks over the city or sitting outside a pub watching the partygoers flock past. You will make some truly wonderful memories with a New Year's road trip.

We know that Covid-19 restrictions are currently in place in some areas of the UK already, with Scotland cancelling their Hogmanay celebrations which is why you won't see Edinburgh or Stonehaven in this list.

It's also not certain what will happen in Wales as nightclubs will be closed from Dec 27 and the rule of six has been reintroduced so there's uncertainty over what will actually be permitted. Cardiff would have made the list in normal times.

At the time of writing the seven places below did not have any restrictions in place but this could all change after Christmas, so please bear that in mind.

7. Allendale

Allendale in Northumberland, northeast England has one of the most traditional celebrations in the whole of the UK on New Year's Eve that can be enjoyed by young and old alike.

There is a ceremonial bonfire that men toss flaming barrels of tar onto to create a fantastic spectacle, something unlike you've ever seen before. It's a bit more of a niche event but certainly worth dedicating the time to one day.

6. Bideford

It's highly likely you'd have never even heard of this North Devon town, let alone considered it to be a New Year's Eve hotspot, yet this little town massively slips under the radar.

Like in Looe, everyone is encouraged to wear fancy dress and local pub landlords choose their winners and offer discounts to the best dressed.

Not only that but on the stroke of midnight, everyone rushes across the Long Bridge with the aim to get to the end before the last chime. If that doesn't appeal to you, then sit down with a bottle of wine and take in all the action.

5. Looe

Cornwall is a popular destination for those that want to escape the city and enjoy some time by the sea at any time of year, but it seems they especially up their game around New Year.

The tradition in Looe is you have to come in fancy dress, making this small village become one huge party that everyone can get involved in.

The seafood restaurants are a delight before making your way to the beach to see in the new year with a big fireworks display. There's nothing quite like ending a year by the seaside.

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4. London

The capital of England hosts one of the biggest and best firework displays in the whole world down on the South Bank of the Thames, incorporating the London Eye and many of its famous bridges nearby into the show.

But aside from the most obvious party, due to its size, the number of parties and events in and around the city will be so great that it will be almost impossible to pin down one that takes your fancy.

The New Year's Day parade the following day is a sight to behold and features over 10,000 performers from all over the world. This is, of course, if you're not struggling too much from the previous night's antics.

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3. St Ives

You'll notice by now that there's a running theme in this list of places in Cornwall that are worth visiting, and St Ives is definitely one of the top choices for various reasons.

Firstly, sticking with the Cornish fancy dress tradition, the whole town turns into one big party with everyone getting involved. There are street parties and fireworks around almost every corner that you will feel a part of the action whenever you go.

Don't forget to take in the beach and all the sights and sounds going on around you. It truly is a once-in-a-lifetime experience on New Year's Eve.

2. Manchester

Manchester has become one of the hottest cities to be in in the UK. It has a bit of everything; culture, history, entertainment, sport and of course, its music scene.

There are some huge nightclubs here where some of the biggest DJs perform, making it one of the most coveted events of the year in the whole country. 

Before you go off raving, however, you can take in the bright lights of the city centre and dine at some of the best restaurants in the UK. The possibilities are endless if you choose to visit Manchester for New Year.

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1. Newquay

Newquay is regarded as one of the best party towns in the whole of the UK, with many people travelling from afar for stag/hen dos, birthdays, music festivals, surfing competitions, and more, all year round.

The bars on offer are spectacular, with great views overlooking the many beaches. New Year's Eve is welcomed in with a burst of neon and bright lights, fireworks and the customary 'Auld Lang Syne'.

The party doesn't stop there, though, with most establishments staying open long into the night. If you're not stumbling back to your accommodation at 6am then you have done Newquay all wrong!

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