30 December 2018 - 1 January 2019
Forget Times Square in New York, if there’s one place you’ve got to experience celebrating the New Year – it’s at Edinburgh’s Hogmanay.
The Street Party and Concert in the Gardens are perhaps the best-known events, where, on 31 December, the headline act plays in the gardens and the whole of Princes Street is lined with live bands on different stages. Expect dancing in the streets, and street performers mingling with the crowds.
Come midnight a huge fireworks display will take place above Edinburgh Castle as mass renditions of Auld Lang Syne break out.
Other events in the run up to the New Year include The Torchlight Procession down the Royal Mile on 30 December, and the Candlelit Concert in St Giles’ Cathedral, Ceilidh Under the Castle, and family-friendly Burns Afore celebration on 31 December.
Come 1 January, there’s still plenty happening, including the traditional Loony Dook – a fundraising dash into the freezing waters of the Firth of Forth at South Queensferry!
Hogmanay is the Scottish celebration of New Year, and is said to have its roots in the Viking winter solstice celebrations. Informal Hogmanay gatherings have long taken place in town and city centres across Scotland.
For over 25 years Edinburgh has hosted the Street Party which has, at times, been the largest in the world. In 2017 the three-day event drew 165,994 people from 80 different countries, with 75,000 attending the Street Party alone. Previous acts have included Rag’n’Bone Man, Biffy Clyro, Texas, Primal Scream and Madness.
On 30 December 2000, 1,914 people danced the popular ceilidh dance ‘Strip the Willow’ on George Street in Edinburgh as part of Edinburgh’s Hogmanay, and the act was recognised as a Guinness World Record.
Here are last year’s highlights: