by Thomas Abeltshauser
Celebrating New Year’s Eve amoungst friends has a long tradition, but why not spend it abroad for a change? There a few tips:
While the big New Year’s Eve rush within Brazil is concentrated mainly on Rio de Janeiro, the gay community has long since chosen a different place to celebrate: in Florianopólis, deep in the south of the country, in the state of Santa Catarina. Situated on the island of Santa Catarina, the city and its surroundings are famous for their beautiful beaches and a popular hotspot during the holidays, whether on New Year’s Eve or during carnival, when São Paulo’s largest gay club The Week hosts its exuberant beach parties at Praia Mole. It is a lot quieter outside summer season between December and February. Excursions into nature, beach and recreation are the order of the day instead of partying then. But also sports enthusiasts get their money’s worth – be it sand-boarding, surfing or hiking. New Year’s Eve beach parties are complemented by those in the city’s gay clubs, such as Mix Café, Concorde and Jivago Lounge. www.santur.sc.gov.br
The gay-lesbian tour operator Brazil Ecojourneys has specialised in tours in the south of Brazil and offers tours for small groups and individual travellers. www.brazilecojourneys.com
The megaparty at Brandenburg Gate is two kilometres long attracts one million people celebrating New Year’s Eve here every year. If you prefer it smaller and more gay, join the New Year’s Eve party classics at Schwuz, GMF and Klub International. The most important party will certainly take place at techno temple Berghain which might not be there for long any more due to a proposed increase in GEMA fees at the turn of the year. www.visitberlin.de
The first glass of champagne of the New Year is best to be had in Berlin’s new trendy bar The Liberate at Hackescher Markt. wwww.theliberate.com
It doesn’t always have to be New York and its Time Square Ball. The southernmost city in the US, Key West in Florida traditionally rings in the New Year with a two-metre, glittering giant stiletto. Drag queen Sushi glides down in it from the balcony of homobar Bourbon Street Pub in Duvall Street onto the queer party people shortly before midnight. The are already heated up by other drag queens and their extravagant appearances. www.fla-keys.com/gay
Island House is not only busy on New Year’s Eve. Our recommendation. www.islandhousekeywest.com
None other than Kylie Minogue will be ambassador of creativity at Massive Sydney Harbour NYE Party, providing a spectacular show for her fellow countrymen as well as guests and fans. It will also be the grand finale of her celebrations of the 25th anniversary of her international career as Queen of Pop. Don’t miss the sensational fireworks around Sydney Harbour. www.sydney.com
Sydney Harbour Marriott is located extremely central near the Opera House and Circular Quay – an ideal starting point for all New Year’s Eve celebrations. www.marriott.com/pride
The Icelandic capital is not only known as one of the cities in the world where people love to party – no wonder with about four hours of daylight in winter – but also extremely homo-friendly. The best way to end the old year is at one of the countless night fires and start the new one at New Queers Party at Club Barbara. There you can party with Icelandic bears and otters until noon. Be sure to get your tickets in advance. www.visitreykjavik.is
The gay-and-lesbian tour operator Pink Iceland offers both day tours and event packages for Iceland, i.a., following the motto “Pink December“.
You should definitely arrive one week before New Year’s Eve to take part in Sunburn Festival on thecCandolim beaches of Goa, one of the world’s largest dance & electronic music festivals, that takes place from December 27th to 29th. New Year’s Eve is best spent at Club Copacabana, a hip location overlooking the rooftops of the city. You have plenty of time to sleep in 2013. www.sunburn.in
Alila Diwa Goa hotel is wedged between rice fields and the beach and is dedicated to sustainable tourism.
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