This page shows photos of Edinburgh's Hogmanay (New Year)
celebrations. The New Year is celebrated more eagerly in Scotland than in
other parts of Europe, so many people like to visit there at this time of
year. In Scotland there are two public holidays at the start of the year,
compared to only one in England and Wales.
One of the events soon after Christmas (a couple of days before New Year's
Eve) is a Torchlight Procession. People carry wax torches through the streets
- these can be reserved by buying a ticket beforehand. The usual route is
from Parliament Square (on the Royal Mile), down The Mound, along Princes
Street and up Calton Hill. Scottish pipers and drummers accompany the crowds.
On top of the hill celebrations include the burning of a Viking longship and
On December 31st many people go to pubs and clubs and celebrate the New Year
across the different time zones of the world. It is already New Year in New
Zealand at 11am, and celebrations in Sydney (Australia) start at 1pm.
There is a street party in central Edinburgh (in Princes Street
is sponsored by the Royal Bank of Scotland and is known as The Royal Bank
. You must buy a pass in advance if you want to join this
(if you join an organised Hogmanay tour, these passes are normally included).
For safety reasons, no glasses or bottles can be taken into the street party
area. It gets very crowded, so if you are planning to get together with friends
it may be easier to meet up before going there. Make sure that you go early
- latecomers may find it difficult to enter Princes Street.
A special ticket needs to be bought if you want to attend the Concert in
(on a stage in Princes Street Gardens). There is also a Ceilidh
in the Gardens (traditional Scottish music and dancing). People who join the
street party can usually watch the concert on a giant screen.
At midnight there is a firework display in front of Edinburgh Castle. The
best views are from Princes Street, but if you can't go to the street party
you can enjoy the view from any of the hills which surround the city.
Make sure that you wrap up warm, as outdoor temperatures may be below freezing
at night at this time of year. Kilt-wearers need to be particularly careful!
One tradition is to wish everyone a happy new year. Some people will greet
strangers with a hug and maybe a kiss on the cheek. Be warned: those who drink
a little too much may act a bit strangely ...
If you are travelling to Edinburgh independently for New Year, make sure that
you book accommodation as far in advance as possible. Prices are higher than
normal at this time, and there is often a longer minimum stay requirement.
Transport services also get full, so buy tickets early.
The official website for Edinburgh's Hogmanay celebrations is: http://www.edinburghshogmanay.org
See also: http://www.edinburghguide.com/events/edinburghshogmanay
Full details of Hogmanay events are normally released in October. Torch reservations,
street passes and tickets for concerts or celebration parties should be bought
Christmas events in Edinburgh are shown on the website: http://www.edinburghschristmas.com
For details of Edinburgh's pubs and clubs, see: http://www.edinburgh-pubs.co.uk
One popular Australian bar in Edinburgh is Walkabout: http://www.walkabout.eu.com/venues/Walkabout-Edinburgh
Back to top