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The Best New Year’s Celebrations in Thailand

New Year’s Eve is the one time of year when the whole world joins together for a massive party. What could be more fun than ringing in the New Year to fireworks and chants of Auld Lang Syne? It’s a tradition that’s been going for as long as we can remember.

But while we wouldn’t want to tread on tradition, we must share with you the magic of going on holiday for New Year’s Eve! We doubt anyone would turn their nose up at the chance to escape the UK’s cold winter weather. So, where should you visit? Well, the party capital of the world of course…Thailand!

Thailand New Year’s Eve holidays are a once in a lifetime opportunity that you simply cannot miss. From fireworks over Bangkok to glowing lanterns in Chang Mai, New Year’s Eve in Thailand is a must!

If you’re planning a holiday to Thailand over the festive period, why not extend your dream getaway to include the New Year? In this guide, we’ve selected our pick of the best New Year’s celebrations in Thailand. Grab a cocktail, some glitter and your loved ones and let the good times roll!

1. Pattaya, East Thailand

When it comes to nightlife in Thailand, few hotspots beat the hedonistic resort of Pattaya. The nation’s very own Sin City has a reputation for throwing the best New Year’s Eve parties on mainland Thailand!

On any given day, you’ll find bright neon nightclubs, go-go bars and Thailand’s unique blend of cabaret, but Pattaya pulls out all the stops for its New Year’s celebrations.

It’s a case of anything goes in Pattaya at New Year’s Eve, with spectacular costumes, huge firework displays and an unrivalled vibrant nightlife.

The action mainly centres around Pattaya’s iconic Walking Street – think Thailand’s answer to Amsterdam’s Red Light District – but there’s also plenty of fun to be had on the beach with thousands turning out for the region’s annual beach party.

If you’re looking for a raucous New Year’s Eve in Thailand, Pattaya is the place to be. Expect plenty of live music, lots of dancing and all the Mai Tai’s you can handle in this cosmopolitan party town.

2. CentralWorld Square, Bangkok

If you’re looking for the traditional countdown, epic fireworks and crowds and family-friendly entertainment, there’s only one place to be in Thailand!

New Year’s Eve in Bangkok is a party like you’ve never experienced before. Set in the heart of the city centre in front of the sixth largest shopping centre in the world, the Central World New Year’s celebrations are truly out of this world.

Light shows, neon decorations and live performances all come together on the biggest night of the year, attracting visitors from all over the world. Unlike Pattaya, Bangkok offers more in the way of a family experience for all ages.

Aside from live music, CentralWorld Square is also a fantastic place to sample tasty Thai dishes and local specialities.

The celebrations continue long into the night, with Bangkok’s many nightclubs, bars and restaurants keeping the party going until the early hours.

Bangkok at New Years Eve

3. Ko Pha Ngan, Gulf of Thailand

You can’t spend New Year’s in Thailand without experiencing one of the country’s famed Full Moon parties. This annual Thai tradition is one of the reasons why so many travellers return to Thailand year after year.

Full moon parties in Ko Pha Ngan are an experience like no other. In fact, this picturesque island in the Gulf of Thailand is where the tradition first originated! The parties take place on the beach and see thousands of neon-clad ravers joining together to welcome in a new year.

Aside from fireworks, Ko Pha Ngan’s crazed New Year’s Eve full moon party sees fire dancing, amazing light displays and limbo dancing.

If you’re planning on heading to a full moon party in Thailand, we recommend having a read of one of the many survival guides online from seasoned travellers and full moon party veterans. As always, remember to drink responsibly and stay in a group.

Looking for holidays in Ko Pha Ngan? The island is easily accessed via ferry from Thailand’s main islands, including Koh Samui.

4. Chiang Mai, Northern Thailand

If you’re looking for a more cultural Thailand New Year’s Eve that’s suitable for the whole family, we recommend a trip to the magnificent city of Chiang Mai in northern Thailand.

New Year’s in Chiang Mai sees thousands get together to light flying Chinese lanterns, which fill the sky. The experience is truly magical and a real sight to behold.

Away from the bustling streets of Bangkok and the bright neon lights of Pattaya, Chiang Mai is known throughout Thailand for its ornate ancient places and historic Buddhist monuments.

The region is commonly referred to as the “Rose of the North”, mainly thanks to the area’s immense natural beauty and rolling countryside.

New Year’s Eve in Chiang Mai is the perfect option for couples, due to the romantic nature of the event. Make a wish under the stars and grab your loved one by the hand before making your way to the city’s fabulous night bazaar market.

5. Chaweng Beach, Koh Samui

If you’ve ever seen Danny Boyle’s movie adaption of ‘The Beach’ with Leonardo DiCaprio, you’ll know of how breathtakingly beautiful the beaches in Thailand can be.

Spending New Year’s Eve on the beach is an experience most of people dream of – believe us, there’s nothing quite like it.

For a New Year’s Eve party you will never forget, we recommend taking a trip to the enchanting Thai island of Koh Samui, where you’ll find the world-famous Chaweng Beach.

A holiday to Koh Samui gives you the chance to experience one of the best New Year’s Eve parties in Thailand, with a firework display that will truly blow your mind.

Big name DJs and celebrities often turn out at Chaweng Beach for the area’s annual NYE bash, meaning you can expect one hell of a night out!

But likewise, if you’d rather sit back and take it easy, you can enjoy the festivities from the comfort of one of the area’s many nearby luxury hotels – often families and couples decide to watch the New Year fireworks in Koh Samui from the comfort of their own balcony.

If a holiday to Thailand sounds like your idea of the dream New Year’s Eve celebration, you’re in safe hands. You’ll find a number of Thailand package holiday deals on the Destination2 website, including flights and luxury hotels across the Thailand’s best resorts.

Alternatively, check out our blog for more holiday ideas, guides and information.