Hit the Road

The 4 Best Places to Celebrate New Year’s in the South

A genteel riverboat cruise? A beachfront party with Pitbull? It's not too late for a last-minute road trip.

By Kayla Stewart December 29, 2015

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Fireworks light up the night sky over downtown Miami.

Image: Shutterstock

Another eventful year is coming to a close. With a 12-month period that included llamas running loose in residential areas, Hotline Bling-inspired Christmas sweaters, and a new album from Adele (thank you, music gods), it’s only right that the next year be ushered in with style and excitement. These four Southern spots have everything you need to make New Year’s Eve a night to remember.        

New Orleans, LA

It’s hard not to spend New Year’s in a city that allows patrons to carry their drinks outdoors. Crescent City Countdown Club will put on its annual fireworks display over the Mississippi River 15 minutes before the New Year. The French Quarter will be filled with residents and performers out for a good time, and the 8-foot-tall fleur-de-lis that drops at Jackson Square at midnight is not to be missed.  

Savannah, GA

Savannah is one of the most stunning gems of the South, and the city has the activities to match. Jazz’d Tapas Bar will take you on a time traveling experience to the the speakeasy days of old Savannah by hosting a Roaring 20s New Year’s Eve Bash. Savannah’s City Market will include a number of shopping and eating opportunities, as well as live music. For a really unique evening experience—and a way to avoid crowds—try a gala cruise with Savannah Riverboat Cruises. Put on your evening best and and champagne, dancing and a generous buffet that includes lobster tail and beef tenderloin.   

Austin, TX

Sometimes, close and comfortable is the way to go. While a road trip to Austin isn’t exactly unique for the average Texan, the possibilities for an incredible New Year’s are infinite. For the cabaret enthusiast, check out The Aerial Spectacular at Austin Music Hall, or bring in the New Year with Willie Nelson, Kacey Musgraves, and Lukas Nelson at the renowned Moody Theater. If none of these activities peak your interest, there’s always going out on 6th Street, where an endless number of bars and supreme people-watching opportunities are available.

Miami, FL

If you’re looking for a nonstop party this New Year’s, Miami is the place for you. Pitbull will help Floridians and travelers bring in the new year at Bayfront Park, and Drake will be performing at E11even. For those who want a quieter scene, there will be live music by Elastic Bond and Mr. Pauer at The Yard. STK Restaurants will hold a masquerade ball for those who like to dress up for a good party.

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