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Happy New Year!

Breathtaking firework displays have lit up night skies around the world as cities held impressive celebrations for merrymakers gathered to welcome 2019.

New Year is a marvellous time of cheerfulness. But its celebrations and traditions in different countries vary widely. Bringing in the new year and bidding adieu to the old one is a tradition that spans the world. Let’s have a glance at some of the most interesting celebrations in different countries that Lucky Pants Bingo has come up with!

New York: Times Square

As the superb New Year's Eve Ball tumble down from the flagpole above One Times Square, millions of people are united in the street. Of course, with the aim to bid a collective farewell to the departing year – expressing their hope and joy for the year ahead.

Usually, celebrators show up late in the afternoon on New Year's Eve. The celebration starts with the lighting and raising of the New Year’s Eve Ball above One Times Square. This is precisely when the Times Square team starts to distribute tens of thousands of those famous noisemakers, glasses and hats to help cheer in the New Year.

Quickly… grab yours since the 60 seconds countdown is the big moment! The New Year’s Eve Ball starts to fall. At midnight, the Ball’s lights on are turned off as the digits of the New Year "2019" burst to life shining high above Times Square. The famous party confetti is then released from the roofs of buildings. It creates an exciting and colourful kind of blizzard, as celebrators joyfully welcome the New Year accompanied by bright pyrotechnic effects. Simply magical!

Paris, France

Thousands of people celebrate New Year's Eve on Paris' Champs-Élysées avenue in a festive and jubilant atmosphere. Tourists and Parisians alike gather on the avenue known for its iconic architecture to watch a spectacular 20-minute light show projected on to the well-known Arc de Triomphe monument. Plus, they get to goat over the striking fireworks display to ring in the start of the New Year.

And the fiesta does not end here! People wish each other (Bonne Année) and exchanging (bises) at the stroke of midnight. Not to forget, mailboxes are flooded with gifts and greeting cards throughout the month. Oh, don’t be amazed if you hear New Year's wishes all during January. Of course, feel free to return them—with the typical French greeting.

Jakarta and Magelang, Indonesia

In all parts of the globe, new year celebration is regarded as a festive merriment. In the capital of Indonesia, Jakarta, it is no different. Usually, the most extravagant event is held in front of the Government Centre. A variety of traditional art and performances are showcased such as lenong, puppet, traditional music, or popular crews for the public to see. 

Generally, Indonesia is a unique country with so many people from different beliefs and ethnicities. And we get to enjoy an amalgam of cultures for the new year. In Jakarta, New Year may be celebrated with sparkles and cheers. Indonesians rejoice in New Year with a reflection while watching the first sunrise on the top of a high hill, a mountain or the ruins of the ancient temples and palaces. Imagine closing the year in calmness with the view of glittering lights from the villages downhill. It’s a unique experience worth trying!

Tanzania

Tanzania celebrates the New Year in a stylish way. The people of Zanzibar get together on this day to revel in the festival with the most frolic and fun where strangers are also welcome to participate. Imagine white sand beaches, crystal clear blue water and the nicest temperatures for a month like December.

Welcome to Tanzania! Usually, Zanzibar is an island and a true paradise that offers the best location for a proper New Year’s Eve. However, the most popular destinations for a memorable party at New Years are Nungwi and Kendwa. Here, people decide to go barefoot on the golden sand and dance through the night - surrounded by the sound of the ocean. But watch out! The moon will not be the only thing glowing in the sky. The Tanzanians love to grace the new year with some extraordinary fireworks as well.

Japan

New Year is considered the most important festival in Japan. Years are usually regarded as completely separate, with each new year providing a fresh start. Plus, several ‘bonenkai parties’ are held with the purpose of leaving the old year's fears and troubles behind. Entrance gates and homes are decorated with ornaments made of plum trees, bamboo, pine and clothes.

On New Year's eve, buckwheat noodles are served. A more amazing custom is watching the music show "kohaku uta gassen". It is a highly popular TV program featuring many of Japan's most famous singers in spectacular performances. Even though the New Year is not welcomed with the blast of fireworks, the celebrations in Japan will truly add new colours for the upcoming year!

Brazil

The New Year’s Eve in Brazil is best celebrated, especially, when summer temperatures are at its peak. Brazilians gather by the beaches, under the open skies while the samba songs get everyone shaking and kicking. New Year's is equally contagious in Buzios, Salvador, Recife and many other beach resorts around Brazil.

However, Copacabana Beach is the one that calls all the attention for its well-known fireworks, traditions and celebrations. Millions of people are dressed in white and will still not mind getting their clothes wet. The very long midnight fireworks shows are awaited with emotion and much expectation by the Brazilians and foreigners alike. It’s a magical celebration that includes prayers, songs and African rituals.

Lucky Pants Bingo

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