"Silvester / New Year?s Eve" Germany Local Custom Tip by Kathrin_E
Germany Local Customs: 311 reviews and 349 photos
While Christmas is a family affair in Germany, Silvester is big party time. From clubs and pubs to fancy restaurants and posh hotels, everyone will have an event that night. Private parties are going on everywhere. Tickets for concerts and theatre performances must be booked well in advance.
At midnight, having a glass of champagne is a ‘must’.
Since mid-winter is usually wet and cold, Silvester is not the perfect season for street parties. Usually people party indoors and come out into the streets only for a short while around midnight. The big exception is Berlin – since the German reunification, the area around Brandenburger Tor has become the No. 1 hotspot for New Year’s Eve partying in the whole country. (I have never been myself, though, mass partying is not my piece of cake. Probably I’m too old for that.)
Fireworks are lit all night long, with a climax ad midnight. The shops are allowed to sell firecrackers from December 29. In those days you better keep a wide distance from youths with lighters or there may be an unexpected firecracker exploding next to you.
German firecrackers are all TÜV-tested, thus as safe as they could be. The users, however, are not TÜV-tested and human stupidity is omnipresent, so take care. Silvester is peak season for fire brigades, ambulances and emergency care.
Walking city centres close to midnight on Silvester can be an unpleasant adventure if you are not into this kind of thing. A friend once told me how they sought refuge next to an ATM behind safe glass doors until the worst was over. The next morning all streets, parks and gardens will be a big mess and full of burnt out rockets and firecracker leftovers.
Feel free to assume that I am not a big fan of Silvester.
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