(Closed) Western Europe in the Winter (specifically Paris on NYE?)

posted 8 years ago in Travel
Post # 3
Bee
6473 posts
Bee Keeper
  • Wedding: June 2011 - Sydney, Australia

Ooh la la, that sounds amazing! I’ve done a lot of winter trips to Europe – and it’s going to be chilly but FUN. Now I’ve never been lucky enough to spend NYE in Paris before {let me come with you!} I found these online for spots to head to: {I thoroughly recommend Montmartre. It’s Mr Jag & I’s favourite place in Paris.}

Major Spots to Celebrate

If you like to countdown to the New Year in the warmth– literal and figurative– of a crowd, there are several places around the city where thousands of residents and visitors traditionally gather to uncork the champagne and shout “Bonne Annee!”:

  • The Champs-Elysees is the place to head if you want to be at the center of the party. Starting at around 9 p.m. on New Year’s Eve, people start to flock to the famous street, often bringing along bottles and plastic flutes. From many places on the Champs-Elysees, you can get a good view of the Eiffel Tower, which explodes into a sparkling dance of light at the stroke of midnight.

    Major fireworks displays can usually be seen from the Champs-Elysees, and there are plenty of spots to go dancing or dining before or after midnight in the area. Although the ambiance here is usually “bon enfant” (literally– “good child”, or harmless), celebrating on the Champs-Elysees calls for you to be especially aware of your personal belongings, as pickpocketing is common in large crowds. Also, this won’t be the party of choice for you if you’re claustrophobic or crowd-shy.

  • The Sacre Coeur Cathedral plaza in Montmartre is another favorite, and significantly calmer, place to bid farewell to the current year. Assuming the skies are relatively clear, the knolltop vantage affords spectacular views of the entire Paris skyline, so you’re sure to see any fireworks being launched around Paris. While still crowded, the Montmartre street party is more laid-back than its Champs-Elysees counterpart, and there are plenty of bars, cabarets, and clubs to explore in Montmartre and nearby Pigalle. If you’re looking for a less conventional way to celebrate New Year’s in Paris, partying in Montmartre may be the ticket.

I’m a nerd.. and if I were in Paris for New Years, I’d probably go to Disneyland there & frolic around in the park.

Switzerland is stunning in winter – if you look at Viator, they have a lot of great day trip & events you can book out of the bigger cities. When we stayed in Zurich, we took a coach & rail trip up to the top of Jungfrau which was just incredible. 

Post # 4
Member
1189 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: March 2010

I was in Paris for NYE when I was 13, and from what I remember, as Jaguar said the Champs-Elysees was the place everyone wanted to be.  Have fun!

Post # 5
Hostess
11279 posts
Sugar Beekeeper
  • Wedding: June 2011

I went to Paris a week before Christmas 5 years ago for my brithday. It was much better at that time of year than when I went in the Summer years before. There were lots of lights everywhere, a good atmosphere and a lovely fayre round the corner where our hotel was. When I say fayre I mean lots of food stalls. I still dream about the food we had from there. The only thing i’d say is I think they’re having security issues there at the moment. ๐Ÿ™

Post # 6
Bee
6473 posts
Bee Keeper
  • Wedding: June 2011 - Sydney, Australia

I think both of those places have nice little Christmas stalls & markets everywhere. Nothing nicer than mulled wine or hot chocolate while strolling around all rugged up! Very true re: alerts – though sadly they have security warnings in most places now.

Post # 7
Member
16 posts
Newbee
  • Wedding: May 2010

We’re doing Paris for NYE this year!!  For the night itself, we’re looking at restaurants near the Eiffel Tower so we can enjoy a nice dinner and pop out to see the fireworks without having to stand around in the cold for TOO too long.  We live in NYC a few blocks from Times Square and have joined the throngs to watch the ball drop, so the Champs Elysees hysteria isn’t #1 on our list, but from what I’ve heard is a blast.

While we’re in town, we’re going to catch one of the cabarets (Moulin Rouge, Le Lido, Crazy Horse…), and if you have the $$ to drop they all offer special NYE packages ranging from 500-850 euro (regular price 100-200 euro); not cheap but if you’re looking for glitzy over-the-top festivities I’m sure they won’t disappoint.  From what I’ve heard, MR and Lido are more Vegas-y feathers and live animals and CH is a little more lowkey and sexy (they’re all topless).

There are a few dinner cruise packages along the Seine that seemed great too.  My personal concern though was that many don’t dock until the wee hours of the morning.  I’m in my 30s now….I don’t party like I used too and don’t really want to have to jump ship and doggie paddle back to shore when I’m ready to call it a night at 2am.  The NYE cruises are a definite commitment!!

Hope this helps – have a great trip;)

Post # 9
Member
1701 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: October 2010

I haven’t been to Paris on NYE, but have been to Europe twice in the off season.  Much better than in the summer–no long lines at museums, etc.  Your trip sounds awesome and I am way jealous.

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