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10 Unusual New Years' Eve Traditions from Around the World

Bored with the usual New Years' Eve party? Find new ways to celebrate with 10 unusual traditions from around the world...



12 grapes for New Years Eve in Spain

 Eat a grape with every strike of the bell at midnight for prosperity - only then can you say "Happy New Year!".

Not just for New Year's - Explore Spain all year round on one of our small group tours.



Melting metal to predict the future on New Years Eve in Finland

Throw molten metal into cold water then predict the future from its shape – a heart or ring means a wedding, a ship signifies travel and a pig means plenty of food.

Learn about more of Finland's traditions on a small group adventure tour.



 Pig dressed as a lobster to avoid being eaten on New Years Eve in Croatia

It's ok to have roast pork, wild boar or rabbit stew for dinner on New Year's Day but not lobster or crab as they move backwards (or sideways!) which can lead to setbacks in the coming year.

Visit Croatia on an adventure tour to take in more of its quirks.



Eating lentils for good luck on New Years Eve in Italy

Wear red underwear for good luck, throw pots, pans and clothes out of the window to let go of the past and eat lentils for money and good fortune.

Celebrate all of Italy's traditions on a small group tour.



Wearing yellow underwear for good luck on New Years Eve in Colombia

Walk around the block with an empty suitcase for lots of travel in the New Year and wear yellow underwear for good luck!

Travel to Colombia on an adventure tour.



Burning an effigy on New Years Eve in Ecuador

Make a large scarecrow-like doll, often in the image of some disliked person or celebrity, and set them on fire at midnight, symbolising riddance of the bad things from the past year.

Take a look at our trips to Ecuador.



 Wearing white and offering gifts to Iemanja on New Years Eve in Brazil

Wear white to ward off bad spirits and in coastal towns give offerings (usually flowers) to Iemanjá, Godess of the Sea, and jump seven waves for good fortune.

Take one of our trips to Brazil and experience more of its traditions.



Traditional Shamekazeri Japanese New Years Eve decoration

Dress up in the coming years’ zodiac animal, decorate your house with lobsters for longevity and clean the house from top to toe.

You will love experiencing all the sides to Japan on a small group tour.


South Africa

Throwing old furniture out of a window on New Years Eve in South Africa

Throw old furniture or appliances out of the window (police in Johannesburg have cracked down on this due to the number of pedestrian injuries!).

Visit South Africa on a small group adventure.



Throwing water over each other to wash away the past on Buddhist New Years in Thailand

Celebrate on 13th-15th April (as this is the start of the New Year in Theravada Buddhism) by throwing water on each other to wash away bad luck.

Thailand is the land of Festivals. Choose from one of our small group tours.


Why not start your own New Year's Eve tradition and experience the turn of the year in a new country? Take a look at our other blogs for more travel inspiration.



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