Nothing says New Year's Eve like a fireworks display
I love New Year's Eve, because it's a celebration that changes with you. Christmas means basically the same thing to everyone, but New Year's Eve can be whatever you want it to be - fireworks if you've got kids (or you are one at heart), drinks with friends, a big meal or even an early night. Or to make it really memorable, why not head abroad with family and friends to enjoy a really special New Year's Eve somewhere in Europe. These are just a few places where you can celebrate in style, all easily reached from the UK via Eurotunnel Le Shuttle.
Traditional surroundings - Bruges
The Belgian city of Bruges (or Brugge) is a wonderfully picturesque holiday destination at any time of year, but it's a particularly wonderful place to be on New Year's Eve; the cobbled streets, rustic buildings and beautiful green spaces are all perfect for a romantic getaway. Book into one of the many traditional restaurants or plan your own meal - maybe using classic and luxurious Belgian ingredients such as mussels or grey shrimp - and then head outside to watch the city light up with fireworks. The Minnewater or 'Lake of Love', surrounded by an immaculate park, is a lovely spot to curl up under a blanket and welcome in the new year.
Bruges is one of the most beautiful destinations in Europe, particularly at night
Family fun - Amsterdam
Amsterdam is always a wonderful place to take children - I remember my boys being completely entranced by the trams, canals and crooked houses, as well as deciding they wanted to learn to ride a bike! If you're looking for a quiet, relaxing way to spend New Year's Eve abroad with your kids, the Netherlands are a perfect choice. Dutch tradition at this time of year is totally focused on the family - everyone stays at home to play board games and relax, before dashing out into the street for the traditional fireworks on the stroke of midnight. I'm ashamed to say that the year we visited Amsterdam, everyone was asleep long before the first fuses were lit!
Decadence and excitement - Paris
The City of Lights is a classic choice for those wanting to celebrate New Year's Eve in style - who could see a photo of fireworks bursting in the sky behind the Eiffel Tower and not want to be there for the real thing? The French celebrate
le réveillon de la Saint-Sylvestre
on New Year's Eve, feasting on Champagne and foie gras before wrapping up warm and heading into the streets to toast the New Year. There's always plenty of room for visitors, and you might even find that the famously prickly Parisians are friendlier than usual! Just don't rent a room on the Champs-Élysées - people tend to party all night long, so if you're planning on getting some sleep, look elsewhere in town!
The Eiffel Tower glowing with its five BILLION lights!
Happy New Year, from Eurotunnel Le Shuttle
Just like in the UK, New Year's Eve on the continent can be as peaceful or exciting as you want it to be - so pick a destination and enjoy the knowledge that whatever you choose to do, you're sure to see in the new year in style! And best of all, it's never been easier to get to Europe for an impromptu break, with Eurotunnel Le Shuttle trains running up to four times an hour, 365 days a year, whisking you to Calais in just 35 minutes. Happy new year!