All over the world, big cities are doubling down on imagination and innovation to impress residents and tourists.
From Paris to New York via London and Dubai, let’s shine the spotlight on the most beautiful cities in the world, which make these events showcases of their dynamism.
The Dubai fireworks display has been certified by the Guinness Book of World Records as the largest in the world. Dubai is a master in the art of pharaonic spectacles. Every evening of the year, every 30 minutes from 6 p.m., the Dubai Fountain, at the foot of the Burj Khalifa, projects water 140 m high in aquatic and light choreographies, to a background of classical music .
On New Year’s Eve, the fireworks are set off right here, above the Burj Khalifa tower, the tallest skyscraper in the world (828 m), seeming to spring from this giant of concrete and steel. It illuminates the dancing fountains of the artificial pond and the surrounding skyscrapers. The painting presents a festival of pyrotechnic effects and water games, crisscrossing lights, lasers and water jets. After 10 months of preparation, nearly 500,000 lights and rockets were fired during this resounding spectacle lasting almost 6 minutes.
It must be said that Hong Kong masters this artistic discipline, because the show “The Symphony of Lights” is given every evening as daily proof of its limitless dynamism. But on New Year’s Eve, the representation, between sea and sky, reaches new heights.
It combines the interactive lights of 42 buildings and 2 attractions in Kowloon and Hong Kong Island, punctuated by musical effects, for almost 10 minutes. Conceived as a hymn to the landscape, the show has as a backdrop the myriad lights of the skyline and the dark wooded mountains. The fireworks can be seen on both sides of the port, but Golden Bauhinia Square, a sort of bow jutting out into Victoria Harbour, offers a breathtaking view. Kowloon’s Tsim Sha Tsui also has its advantages.
On New Year’s Eve, Paris is more than ever the City of Lights. Made entirely pedestrian in the afternoon, the most beautiful avenue in the world is hosting several festivities this December 31 from 7 p.m.: DJ sets, giant karaoke, “the largest Ola ever made” and aerial performances by the Deus Ex Machina collective. At the start of the New Year, fireworks are set off from the Arc de Triomphe.
A fireworks display above the Arc de Triomphe at midnight was the high point of the celebration, placed under the sign of the Olympic Games with numerous activities evoking the sporting event. The police immediately began dispersing the avenue. A few months before the 2024 Olympics (July 26 – August 11), New Year’s Eve on the Champs-Elysées was a test of the capital’s ability to welcome several hundred thousand spectators without incident.
The bells of Big Ben which ring the start of the new year… an unmissable tradition for thousands of Londoners… who come to admire the fireworks on the Thames not far away.
At midnight, the bell of Big Ben rings out before the fireworks launch from the London Eye. If a ticketing system is available for access to the best places on the banks (a new batch of tickets goes on sale at the beginning of December 2023), the fireworks are visible from almost all districts of the city. The best viewpoints are to be found at Alexandra Park or Hampstead Heath, which guarantee beautiful perspectives without the smoke.
Across Europe, people gathered this Sunday evening in front of iconic monuments in their city to mark the start of 2024… like in Berlin. Here, bright colors illuminated both the TV Tower and the Brandenburg Gate.
Copacabana New Year’s Eve, one of the coolest in the world, has established itself as the biggest Brazilian party after the Rio Carnival.
Fireworks are set off 300 m from the beach, from platforms at sea, boats and barges anchored in the port, while illuminated cruise ships enter to spend a night of celebration. Broadcast by giant screens on the beach, the show lasts 15 to 20 minutes.
Tens of thousands of people gather in Times Square in New York for a fireworks display that crowns a night of concerts and entertainment. During the Times Square Ball ceremony, the American Dream is seen life-size, at the foot of the gigantic mirror ball. Looking back a little, Central Park offers one of the most beautiful views. This immense park, the lung of New York, also draws its own fire from the Bow Bridge, the pedestrian bridge over the lake.
Sydney also has a long tradition and great expertise in fireworks. Every weekend of the year, one is drawn in Cockle Bay, one of the bays of Darling Harbour, open to Sydney Harbour. But of course, the New Year’s fireworks turn out to be particularly fabulous. Above all, it is one of the first on the planet, because Sydney rings in the new year at 2 p.m. French time.
Mythical, the Sydney Harbor fireworks display is renowned for being one of the most beautiful in the world, with the municipality maintaining this reputation each year. Rocket trails crown the Sydney Opera House and the Harbor Bridge, and illuminate the boats stopped in the bay. The best views are the west shore of Darling Harbour, the performance halls of Harborside Shopping Centre, the restaurants and bars of Cockle Bay Wharf.
And while the festivities were in full swing in Europe, Asia and Africa, American capitals were putting in place the final preparations… with a wish for the news: more peace and stability throughout the world.
The capitals celebrated the new year 2024 with great fanfare with grandiose fireworks displays in front of thousands of citizens. At the same time, Hamas was firing rockets at Tel Aviv, Israel was bombing Gaza and Russia was striking Ukraine.
The transition to the year 2024 was also marked by warlike speeches. In his New Year’s greetings, Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky promises to “ravage” the Russian forces who invaded his country almost two years ago. Russian President Vladimir Putin praised the Russian military in his televised speech. “We have proven time and again that we can solve the most difficult tasks and that we will never back down, because no force can divide us and make us forget the memory and faith of our fathers and stop our development,” a- he declared during his speech.
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