Although Western New Year isn't that big of a deal in China, Beijing still has some fantastic activities to offer on December 31—but only if you embrace the Eastern way of ushering in New Year.
One way to celebrate is by visiting the annual Lights Festival at the Solana shopping mall, where millions of lights flash like a starry sky. You can also wander around the Chaoyang District, looking for a decent bar to welcome in the new year, or go to Shougang Park, joining thousands of locals in the annual NY countdown gala (note: the location may be changed, so stay tuned). And, if you wake up on New Year's Eve without any plan for the day, visit the Forbidden City or head to Beijing's Summer Palace and spend your last day of the year in this magnificent place.
Overall, the city will wash the New Year's spirit over you—even if you don't spot any Christmas trees around. So remember to keep up with the city's official websites, book your accommodation in advance and check the external sources below for any additional information.