Alternative things to do on New Year’s Eve

If you’re in need of some inspiration on how to say goodbye to 2021, we’ve put together a list of fun things to do on New Year’s Eve that you can enjoy with your household – or on your own – while sticking to the guidelines.

Fun things to do on New Year’s Eve 2021

The usual bar-hopping and nights out might not be quite your speed – so here are some fun alternative ideas for spending New Year’s Eve that will still see you bring the new year in with a bang!

Enjoy a night-time picnic

Who says picnics are only for long summer days? This New Year’s Eve, fill up a hamper with all your favourite treats, along with a large flask of hot tea or coffee; then wrap up warm in as many layers as possible, before heading to your local park (or your garden!) to see the new year in.

If the idea of sitting outside stargazing sounds too cold, then set up the picnic on your living room floor instead. It’s the perfect way to say goodbye to the year.

Host a good luck household dinner party

Did you know that certain countries have different types of food that symbolise luck? It’s time to get on-board because let’s face it, we could all do with a bit of luck!

In China and Japan, long noodles symbolise a happy and prosperous life; and any food that symbolises coins or have a golden hue (think dumplings, lentils and mandarin) are believed to bring you prosperity.

For an extra bit of luck, pay homage to the Spanish tradition of eating 12 grapes. Representing one grape for every stroke of the clock, it’s said to give you a fresh start for the year ahead.

Enjoy a movie marathon on New Year's Eve

Enjoy a mega movie marathon

Sometimes, the only way to forget what’s happening in the outside world, is to get lost in a different one.

Pick a genre or theme, then make a list of movies that will last all night, well past when the clock strikes 12.

Whether you’re a horror fanatic and want to be scared out of your mind; or are in need of a few comedies if it’s not been the best year ever, this is just one of the many things to do on New Year’s Eve that we can get behind.

Bring family and friends together

Whether you’ve got family in other countries, or just different groups of mates all across the UK, sometimes you just can’t get all of your nearest and dearest together for a big New Year’s Eve blowout. Look, we know we’re all still feeling tender about the words ‘Zoom call’, but New Year’s Eve is a time to spend with family and friends – and virtual get-togethers can still be fun. You just need to shake it up a bit.

Why not host an online murder mystery party, where everyone dresses up and gets into character? Or arrange a live video escape room, where you get to control the Games Master?

Alternatively, games like Cards Against Humanity and Would You Rather can keep you entertained for hours – especially after you’ve had a bit to drink (make sure you try out some of our easy Christmas cocktail recipes!).

Start scrapbooking

You’ll need to do a bit of prep for this one, as you’ll need to purchase a notebook, some glue and decorations, as well as printing off any photos you want to include.

This is a good way to document the year you’ve gone through – and will give you a chance to reflect on all the good things that have happened. We guarantee you’ll find some positives – and have a newfound appreciation for the small things in life, whether that’s having a cup of tea with loved ones, or enjoying some fresh air on a long walk. 

Plan your next adventure

What could be a better way to cheer yourself up and get excited for 2022 than by organising an adventure? Whether it’s a European city break, a far-flung beach destination, or a chilled staycation; give yourself something to look forward to in 2022.

Start researching your chosen destination, to discover all the things you can see and do. Then, as soon as it’s safe to start flying again, you’ve got a ready-made adventure just waiting to be booked!

Read a book on New Year's Eve

Read a good book

If you long for a life full of hygge, then one of the best things to do on New Year’s Eve is curl up with a good book. Whether you’ve had your eye on a specific book for ages, or have spotted one that has rave reviews, set some time aside on New Year’s Eve to give it a read.

Set the scene with a cosy blanket for cuddling up in, play some ambient background music, and get plenty of snacks in; so you can while away the hours getting lost in a great read. 

How to spend New Year’s Eve alone

If you live on your own and you’re not a big one for parties, you might end up spending NYE by yourself, but that doesn’t mean you can’t still enjoy the night – in fact, lots of people choose to be on their own on New Year’s Eve!

While you can still take part in all of the ideas above if you’re by yourself, it’s important not to dwell on it too much. Take the time to enjoy being in your own company, whether that’s reflecting on the year that’s gone by, planning experiences for 2022, or just being in the moment and taking some time out for you.

New Year’s Eve can be an awesome night, but it can also be a tad overhyped. For our money, it’s best to forget about planning the ‘best night ever’ and focus on what really matters – family and friends and your own wellness. No matter how you choose to spend this year, we hope you have a brilliant New Year’s Eve, and a very happy New Year! For more lifestyle and special occasion inspiration, don’t forget to head on over to our blog and check out our fun DIYs and how-tos.

Note: This blog was updated in October 2021