You are in Bali during New Year holidays and you are asking yourself what should you do at New Year’s Eve? Let me share with you what people actually do here for NYE celebration. There are bunch of parties, festive dinners in restaurants and other options for you.
First thing you have to know about New Year in Bali that it is mostly celebrated by tourists and expats living on the island. Balinese themselves don’t really celebrate New Year or Christmas because they are hindu and new year time is in March. But with growing amount of expats and tourists in Bali every year it getting more trendy to celebrate new years even among locals. And all tough you will not see any local traditional ceremonies around new year time there will be a lot of christmassy&NY decorations in restaurants and stores. As of New Year’s Eve itself most of the locals in Bali prefer to hang out at the beach to watch fireworks. But for are your options for celebrating New Year?
Kuta: street parties and fireworks on the beach
The cheapest way to celebrate New Year’s Eve in Bali is to hit to Kuta bars and clubs in the evenings and later head to Kuta beach to watch fireworks with local crowds. If your way to meet New Year is to party hard, get drunk and dance all night long Kuta is your choice.
All the bars in Kuta will be open for New Years night and most of the main streets will be closed for traffic so you will be able to walk from one night club to another. Be ready for massive crowds and lots of traffic jams around Kuta and Seminyak. The best idea is to park you scooter/car far from main streets and just walk there. If you are planning to drink your own alcohol it’s better to buy it somewhere else in advance.
The main party street will be Legian with all those night clubs and bars open almost all night. No dresscode is needed in Kuta: boardshorts and flipflops will work in most of the places there. Entrance is normally free to most of the bars and clubs. The only one you have prebook in advance (or buy ticket at the entrance) is famous SkyGarden night club. (Ticket is around 20$ which includes open bar 8-10pm).
There will be fireworks and New Year countdown both at Legian streets and on the beach.
If you ask yourself if Kuta is your option to celebrate New Year’s Eve, I would suggest head to Legian street before the NYE and check out few bars and clubs. If you like that kind of party scene then definitely go for it. If you are not into drunk crowds and crazy parties, you will not enjoy NYE Party in Kuta.
Few warnings: Kuta gets really busy few days before NYE and after. It’s gonna be lots of traffic jams and lots of people. If you don’t like that get out of Kuta for these days. Another warning: when you go party to Kuta make sure you don’t take you only take as much money as you need for the party, don’t take your cards or your wallet with your ID: wallets get stolen a lot during the new year’s night craziness. The same goes to fancy cameras etc: you are planning to drink and dance, better leave this stuff at home, otherwise you will have to hold on to it for the rest of the night. Don’t leave any valuables unattended.
Most populars clubs in Kuta: SkyGarden, Eikon, Paddy’s, Apache Reggae Bar. Bars: Alleycats (preparty), Espresso (live music all night long), Greenbox (preparty).
NYE Party in night clubs
One of the best options for NYE celebration is a party somewhere in a night club in Seminyak. Seminyak is an upscale and trendier compare to Kuta. And you can find night clubs for any taste. The nightlife here is on the international level and those of you who prefer to dress up nicely for New Years Party will be able to do that. Nice dress & high heels are common for Seminyak bars & clubs.
Choosing a right night club to celebrate New Years might be not so easy, but let me help you with the short list to choose from. Also keep in mind that most of the clubs charge for entrance ticket during NYE or when entrance is free you will have a minimum charge. Seminyak is expensive and most clubs will have western prices for cocktails and drinks.
The most popular NYE Party in Seminyak is definitely the one in Potato Head Beach Club. It’s a trendy club with good quality music: they bring international DJ’s and bands to Bali and they do all sorts of dress up parties. One good thing about this place it’s a stylish place but with reasonable amount of glam – not too much of that :-) Lots of the expats living in Bali go to Potato Head for New Year Party. The entrance ticket is about 100$ and best to be bought in advance.
Other clubs worth to consider if you like electronic music and prefer to dance all night long: Jenja (night club with electronic music; popular among expats and jakarta trendy peoples), Koh (underground techno club, best for those who like quality electronic music), Shanghai Baby (new trendy night club), La Hacienda (restaurant and bar with qood quality electronic mucis), La Favela.
If you not a big fan of electronic music you might like crazy mexican-style parties in Motel Mexicola. Pool party for NYE? Think of Finn’s Beach Club in Canggu or Cocoon Beach Club in Seminyak. Something more glamorous? Choose between Kudeta, WooBar or DoubleSix Rooftop.
Staying in Canggu? Think of NYE Part in Deus club or in surf bar Oldmans or in a newly opened trendy bar Chaps.
Or head to Uluwatu to the one of the biggest surfers bars and nightsclubs in Bali – Single Fin.
Need more ideas for New Year Party in Bali? Check out more night clubs here.
Keep in mind the traffic situation at NY. Some central streets in Seminyak might be closed for traffic and your will have to walk to your party venue. Check it out in advance.
If you are going to a fancy night club mind your dress code: most clubs will not let men in boardshorts and sandals.
New Year’s Eve Dinner
If you are not much of a party person then NYE is a great time to have a fancy dinner in one of the Bali’s best restaurants. And don’t forget to pre-book it in advance!
Most of the big hotels will offer you NY dinner too, but unless you are an absolutely lazy person I would suggest go check out something in Seminyak or other areas. One thing to keep in mind: there will be lots of traffic in Seminyak around new year time, so it’s better to go to the restaurant in your area. Or be ready for longer time in traffic. Also some venue offer a party after the dinner and some not. Check it out when you pre-book your dinner.
The price for a NYE Dinner in a fancy place will be around 100-250$ per person. That would include set menu, but double check if it includes drinks too. Less fancy restaurants will charge around 50-70$.
Some ideas where to have dinner at New Year’s Eve in Seminyak: one of the best restaurants in Seminyak is Metis (and they have a party after the dinner). Another good and fancy option is W Seminyak (and continue to celebrate there in WooBar). Great NYE dinner can be also expected in one of these restaurants: Merah Putih, Sarong, Sardine.
Other areas of Bali:
Ubud – Bridges, Mozaic or Jungle Fish Beach club
Jimbaran – Sundara Beach Club or Sundays Beach Club
Uluwatu – El Kabron
Nusa Dua – Bumbu Bali or St.Regis or Mulia.
Check out some other restaurants that offer NYE Dinners here
Some fancier restaurants might have a dress code, check it out in advance. For instance men in shorts and sandals won’t be allowed.
If you are looking into more tropical and island way to celebrate New Year then you better head to one of the small islands close to Bali. What can be better then a party on the beach? With no high heels not dress code and no fancy outfits.
The number #1 choice is definitely Gili Islands. Three small islands that have no other traffic but bicycles and horse carriages. The party island is Gili Trawangan, and two other islands are more mellow. There are also boat parties organized in Gili.
Lots of expats go to Gili Trawangan for New Year’s Party so make sure you book your accommodation and boat ticket well in advance.
Besides Gili there is another island close to Bali – Nusa Lembongan. It’s bigger than Gili (there are cars & scooters on the island) but it’s more mellow than Bali. And since Bali is gonna be really crazy during new years days it’s always nice to escape to a more quiet place. In Nusa Lembonagn you can have a NYE Party in Lembongan Beach Club or in Le Pirate Beach Club.
My personal favorite New Year’s Eve celebration recipe?
If you come to Bali with bunch of friends I would suggest rent a villa somewhere in a nice location and have a party there.
Few things to know:
The farther is your villa from Seminyak or central Canggu locations the cheaper it’s gonna be. Otherwise prices are gonna get really high during new years. It’s better to prebook well in advance so you can have more options.
If you plan to have a party for more people than gonna stay in the villa you are supposed to get permission from the owner. That’s quite serious in Bali and unless you want some neighbors/landlords to show up and finish your party much earlier than you planned it’s better to discuss this in advance. Some villa don’t allow party on their premises.
My personal choice is to go few hours away from main tourists destinations and stay somewhere remote and away from party crowds. Enjoy the nature, surf all day long and have a dinner with your close friends. But I guess that’s me ;-) You are done with parties in Bali when you live here too long.