Life How to see this bin fire of a year go out with a bang
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How to see this bin fire of a year go out with a bang

Sydney New Year's Eve fireworks
Fireworks will return with a bang to many states this New Year's Eve. Photo: AAP
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At last, this bin fire of a year is over – and we can let it go out with a bang.

The pandemic might have kissed goodbye to the midnight party pash, but there are still plenty of activities to choose from to see off 2021.

The good news is fireworks are back after being unceremoniously cancelled in most states due to coronavirus restrictions last year.

Plus, there will be more reason to get out as it’s tipped to be a sweltering New Year’s Eve just about everywhere in Australia.

With UV Indexes set to hit extreme levels across all the capital cities, it’s a timely reminder to slip, slop, slap.

And don’t forget a mask for COVID-19 protection.

Here’s TND’s guide to New Year’s Eve festivities around the country.

New South Wales

Weather: Min 18; Max 29; UV Index: 12 (Extreme)

Sydney New Year's Eve fireworks
Sydney will hail in the New Year with its iconic fireworks display.

All eyes will be on the harbour to watch the silhouette of the nation’s most photographed bridge as the water is lit up by fireworks.

The light spectacular, which attracts millions of viewers each year, was cancelled in September due to COVID concerns – before organisers changed their minds in October.

Now that the show is officially back on, just as before the pandemic, the kids can catch the early fireworks show at 9pm, and the main show will kick off at midnight, with this year’s theme ‘See Sydney Shine’.

There are tickets available for a number of vantage points across the city where you can see the fireworks in all their glory – including free spots and some premium positions controversially priced at more than $300 a head.

But, if you feel more comfortable viewing from home, you can always watch either show via the official live-stream.

Victoria

Weather: Min 19; Max 38; UV Index: 12 (Extreme)

Melbourne’s New Year’s Eve celebrations have taken a minor hit this year, with Lord Mayor Sally Capp announcing that the city’s plans to hold a drone show at the Docklands has been cancelled.

It is hoped the drone event provider, Celestial, can instead deliver the spectacle in January.

But don’t despair, there are countless other celebrations planned.

The Melbourne Food & Wine Festival will be bringing back its Street Feasts celebrations on Friday night.

The city’s top restaurants will serve in outdoor dining precincts to take “the party to the streets” – and, with music playing outdoors also, there’s guaranteed to be atmosphere even for revellers who aren’t sitting down for a meal.

From Flinders Lane to the Docklands, tickets are still up for grabs at several tasty venues around town.

Last year’s Street Feasts event was a smash success.

Aside from the food festival, Melbourne’s main celebrations are split into four designated Celebration Zones, with live music acts all night long.

Tickets for these Celebration Zone parties are sadly all sold out. However, fireworks will be back with a resounding bang this year.

Similar to Sydney, one set of fireworks will begin at 9.30pm, and another at midnight.

Melbourne’s fireworks will be best seen from the designated Celebration Zones but, if you’re keen to see some fireworks up close and haven’t snagged a ticket, there are a handful of other fireworks displays in Bendigo, Geelong, Lakes Entrance, Mildura, Phillip Island and Shepparton.

Queensland

Weather: Min 20; Max 28; UV Index: 13 (Extreme)

Brisbane’s fireworks will return after being put on hold in 2020 due to the pandemic.

Fireworks will be launched from three barges and two pontoons at South Bank.

The early show will kick off at 8.30pm, and the main show will start at midnight.

The fireworks are said to be worth the two-year wait, with both sets of shows planned to feature “10 minutes of amazing colours and an awesome soundtrack”.

Brisbane’s fireworks show will go ahead after being cancelled in 2020.

The best place to watch the show is from the South Bank Parklands, which are free to enter. They open at 10am.

Despite surging COVID cases, though, there are no caps on crowds at the parklands, and visitors won’t have to be vaccinated to attend.

If you’re heading out, you may want to pack an umbrella or a rain jacket.

The weather will be warm, but there’s a 60 per cent chance of showers, most likely to hit in the afternoon and evening.

South Australia

Weather: Min 21; Max 38; UV Index: 13 (Extreme)

Adelaide’s NYE celebrations have been scaled back amid record COVID numbers, but there is still plenty to do if you’re keen for a night out.

There’s a Light Up event at Rymill Park, where two sets of fireworks will go off throughout the evening – the first at 9.30pm, and the second at midnight.

Tickets are set at $10 to $15, and are still available.

If you’d rather stay in an air-conditioned venue with an ice-cold drink in hand, there are a number of ticketed Midnight Moments events across the city and North Adelaide, which will all have a view of the North Adelaide midnight fireworks.

Western Australia

Weather: Min 19; Max 31; UV Index: 13 (Extreme)

Perth had planned for a number of music festival-style events to hail in the New Year.

However, the state’s latest COVID outbreak has triggered a number of new restrictions to be in place in Perth and Peel until at least Tuesday.

Masks must now be worn in all indoor settings, diners and pub-goers must remain seated, dancing is banned, and nightclubs are closed for the time being.

However, the show must go on, and the official City of Perth free fireworks event will take place at Northbridge Piazza at 9pm and midnight.

According to Visit Perth, the 9pm display is best seen from Yagan Square and Perth Cultural Centre, and the midnight fireworks will also be viewable from Northbridge Piazza and William Street.

It’s also going to be a stunning beach and barbecue day in Perth, with the mercury predicted to hit 31 degrees in the afternoon.

Tasmania

Weather: Min 13; Max 29; UV Index: 11 (Extreme)

Hobart will go ahead with its fireworks over the harbour, with the usual 9.30pm and midnight shows confirmed.

The fireworks will launch from the middle of the River Derwent, best seen from the waterfront.

Plus, Launceston Beerfest at Royal Park is gearing up to be the place to be for NYE, with gourmet food, drinks and front-row seats to the event’s fireworks.

Also on the agenda is the Taste of Summer event.

The ticketed event will showcase Tassie’s best produce until January 3 and feature more than 40 live music acts.

Northern Territory

Weather: Min 26; Max 33; UV Index: 13 (Extreme)

Darwin’s landmark New Year’s Eve Event will take place on the Darwin Waterfront.

Gates will open at 3.30pm, with celebrations starting at 5.30pm.

There’ll be a performance for all members of the family.

From Nickelodeon’s Paw Patrol to The Veronicas and Amy Shark, it’s shaping up to be a fun night.

The festivities will be topped off with two sets of fireworks, the first taking place at 9pm.

You can grab tickets to the event here, with prices starting at $35.

Weather wise, there will be possible showers in the late morning and afternoon, so be sure to pack a brolly.

Australian Capital Territory

Weather: Min 13; Max 31; UV Index: 12 (Extreme)

Canberra is gearing up for its first major event since lockdown with its New Year’s Eve extravaganza.

Canberra’s fireworks are scheduled at 9pm and midnight, with synchronised fireworks to launch from east, west and central basins of Lake Burley Griffin.

Entertainment will also be roving around the lake from 6pm to 9pm, including circus acts, traditional Indonesian dance and even burlesque performers.

Pop-up vendors and food stalls will also surround the lake.