New Year’s Eve Sydney 2016 | Parties, Accommodation and Fireworks

Join one of the world's largest parties and ring in New Year's Eve in Sydney.

Start off 2017 with a bang, in the city that many dub one of the best in the world to celebrate New Year's Eve. With more than a million people flocking to the Sydney foreshore, there's sure to be a party no matter where you watch from. If you're after something a bit quieter, reserve a spot on one of the dozens of New Year's Eve cruises out on the harbour, book tickets to see a show at the Opera House followed by fireworks, or a book a table with a view at some of the city's best restaurants.

When do each of the the New Year’s Eve fireworks and displays start?

Not sure how this fireworks display works? Here are the key times you need to know:

8:30pmPylon Projections Sydney Harbour Bridge
8:45pmSydney Harbour Bridge Effect
9pmFamily Fireworks Display, Sydney Harbour Bridge and Sydney Harbour
9:15pmHarbour of Light Parade, Sydney Harbour
MidnightMidnight Fireworks Display, Sydney Harbour Bridge and Sydney Harbour

Looking for the best free fireworks vantage points?

New Year's Eve Sydney restaurant packages you can book now:

New Year's Eve at Sydney Tower Buffet from Viator

Dine on foods from around the world more than 250 metres above the Sydney streets. The New Year's buffet package includes free-flowing drinks from 7:30pm until 12:30 am and features panoramic views of the Sydney Harbour and Darling Harbour fireworks.

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New Year's Eve at Sydney Tower 360 Bar and Dining from Viator

Start off the night with a pre-dinner drink at 360 bar before dining on a 6-course dinner followed by dancing. Enjoy views of Sydney Harbour from the highest vantage point of the city, which offers unparallelled views for both the 9pm and midnight fireworks shows.

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El Circo VIP New Year's Eve Celebration at Slide Sydney from Viator

Watch a Parisian cabaret while dining on a 9-course French-inspired meal at El Circo. There will be circus performers, cabaret acts and burlesque dancers performing on the night. Note: There are no harbour views at the venue, however footage of the fireworks will be shown on screens.

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Keep an eye out for restaurant packages from the following venues. The 2017 packages haven't been announced yet, but each of them offered New Year's Eve dinners last year.

  • Q Dining
  • Kobe Jones
  • ABODE Bistro
  • Sydney Dining Room @ Park Hyatt
  • The Star
  • O Bar
  • Altitude @ Shangri-La Sydney
  • Waterfront & Wolfies

New Year's Eve Sydney parties

While there's aren't any bookable New Year's Eve parties for 2017 yet, here's a few parties from last year to get you excited and give you an idea of what may be available this year.

  • Ivy NYE Party: The Ivy on George Street, right in the heart of the CBD, threw a New Year's Eve bash. Tickets included express VIP entry, a souvenir lanyard and a welcome drink. Some of the big names that were there are MaRLo at midnight, Mark Sixma, SCNDL, Tenzin, Ember, Jesabel, Disorder & Hookie, Glover, G-Wizard, Jay Sounds and Trifo.
  • NYE Under the Stars: Nestled in the Royal Botanic Gardens, visitors spent the evening under the stars at Tarpelan Way for uninterrupted views of the Harbour Bridge and Opera House. Exclusive food and beverage packages were available.
  • Pirrama Park Wharf Viewing: Allocated to just 600 people at this awe inspiring spot, this party included a 3-course Italian hamper. Alcohol was available from the licensed bar.
  • Clark Island: Island tickets sold out fast, but Clark Island offered a lounge for you to sink into with food, beverage and entertainment at the ready. And yes, ferry ride was included in the ticket price.
  • Dudley Page Reserve: One that was great for the kids and for the wallet, last year, GA tickets were just $35pp and there was a festival of jumping castles, face painting, entertainment, and booze at your fingertips before the party really got started.

Free vantage points for the New Year's Eve fireworks

Don't mind the crowds, or looking to make a DIY New Year's packages? Check out these free vantage points within sight of the fireworks.

While the opening times and restrictions to each area haven't been announced for 2017 yet, here are the opening times, capacities and restrictions that applied last year:

  • Dawes Point (Ta-Ra) Park: Right under The Harbour Bridge and looking at Luna Park, this is a popular but beautiful spot. (Capacity: 30,000. Open from 8am, no alcohol, no pets.)
  • Mary Booth Lookout: In Kirribilli staring straight into the city, this one gets packed early. (Capacity: 2,500. Open from midday, no alcohol, no pets.)
  • Blues Point Reserve: Hugely popular for a reason. Get in while you can. (Capacity: 12,000. Open from midday, no alcohol, no pets, no camping.)
  • Observatory Hill Park: They don’t call it a hill for nothing, you know. Minutes from Circular Quay and Wynyard it’s like there’s nothing else but you and a sky full of stars. Oh, and fireworks, naturally. (Capacity: 7,500. Open from midday, no alcohol, no pets)
  • Tarpeian Precinct: Adjacent to the Opera House, this is a hidden spot with a limited capacity. Park it here early. (Capacity: 3,000. Open from 10am, no alcohol, no pets, no unsealed beverages, no tents, no bean bags, mattress or inflatable furniture. No ball games.)
  • Mrs Macquaries Point: A favourite every year, with spectacular views and catering and bar service. (Capacity: 16,000. Open from 10am, no alcohol, no pets, no ball games, no tents/bean bags, mattresses, inflatable furniture.)
  • Thornton Park: Park it early in the day and you won’t regret it. This park, while being popular, doesn’t reach capacity until later in the day. (Capacity: 1,000. Open from midday, no alcohol, no pets.)
  • Balls Head Reserve: Another hot favourite on the other side of the bridge. (Capacity: 2,000. Open from 10am, no alcohol, no pets, no camping.)
  • Pyrmont Bay Park: Nestled between the Australian National Maritime Museum and The Star, while the views are limited, the crowds almost never reach capacity. (Capacity: 15,000. Open from 8am, no alcohol, no pets.)
  • Darling Harbour - Cockle Bay: While Circular Quay is everyone’s first go-to, don’t forget we have another Harbour with some pretty amazing views and fireworks shows going on, too. There’s a light show at 8pm, and Pyrmont Bridge is also accessible for viewing the show. (Capacity: 44,000. Open from 7am, no BYO alcohol, no pets, no fishing, no busking.)
  • Birchgrove Park: With views of the western side of the Bridge, this unassuming park is a pretty neat spot to ring in the new year. (Capacity: 5,000. Open from 10am, no BYO, no pets.)


Sydney New Year’s Eve Accommodation

We do throw quite a party on New Year’s Eve. If you don’t want to battle the commute home, or are visiting our fair city, then here are some top spots to book into that will provide you with the perfect view to kick off the New Year. Note: limited rooms available.

Ovolo Woolloomooloo Hotels
Park Hyatt Sydney Hotels
Shangri-La Hotel, Sydney Hotels
The Hilton Sydney Hotels
Pier One Sydney Harbour Hotels
Sydney Harbour Marriott Hotels

Images: City of Sydney And

Stephanie Yip

Stephanie is a journalist, avid traveller and all-round bargain hunter. If there's an online coupon code, deal or cheap flight available, she'll know about it. And she'll let you know about it, too.

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10 Responses to New Year’s Eve Sydney 2016 | Parties, Accommodation and Fireworks

  1. Default Gravatar
    Scott | October 12, 2016

    Hi, I am looking for somewhere in Sydney for NYE and wondered if there is any free areas and BYO alcohol?

    • Staff
      Stephanie | October 14, 2016

      Hi Scott,
      Thanks for your question.
      The list of vantage points for the 2017 fireworks has not yet been released, however last year certain points such as Neilson Park, Elkington Park and Goat Island allowed for BYO drinks.
      We will update our site with confirmation of details and locations when the official listing for this year’s event comes out.
      Hope that helps,

  2. Default Gravatar
    Karen | September 21, 2016

    We are booking a Chinese Restaurant called The East on Circular Quay which comes with sydney council tickets to access the Circular Quayside when our table expires at 8pm. Are there places to purchase alcohol without having tickets to enter the venues/bars on Circular Quay, when we have departed the restaurant at this time? We want to know that its not a non alcohol area?

    • Staff
      Stephanie | September 22, 2016

      Hi Karen,
      Thanks for your question.
      As mentioned in the article, many of the council vantage points are alcohol-free however there are a few that allow you to purchase alcohol on site. In Circular Quay, these spots are Bennelong Point and Lawn with the View. There will also be alcohol available at the Barangaroo vantage point.
      There are many bars along Circular Quay that will be open to the public. Getting into each however will depend on whether they have reached their maximum capacity or not. Alternatively, bottle shops will be open however by law they are required to close at 10pm.
      I hope that helps,

  3. Default Gravatar
    Heriberto | September 12, 2016

    Hi, I’d like to know which restaurants accept children for dinner on 31th night, and have a good view of the bridge and or opera for the fireworks. Thanks

    • Staff
      Stephanie | September 13, 2016

      Hi Heriberto,

      You can find a list of restaurants with a view of the harbour and fireworks on New Year’s Eve here.

      I hope that helps,


  4. Default Gravatar
    Kimi | December 30, 2015

    I am looking for a place to celebrate 31st eve with spectacular view of sydney harbor bridge fire works.
    We are group of around 12 people could you please help what place would be available.

    • Staff
      Stephanie | December 31, 2015

      Hi Kimi,

      Thanks for your comment.

      All the details required to view the New Years Eve celebration are in the article above.



  5. Default Gravatar
    CreateConsultants | November 26, 2015

    How do I have our NYE event (Sydney Observatory) added to this article?

    • Staff
      Stephanie | November 27, 2015

      We will contact you direct.

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