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Best time to go to Colombia

New Year's Eve 2023-2024

Choose between a wild beach party or a noisy street celebration to ring in New Year in Colombia

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Last updated: by Olga Valchyshen
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Colombia is an excellent New Year's Eve destination, not just thanks to the mellow weather. This South American country, washed by the Caribbean Sea and the Pacific Ocean, is known for its vibrant festivals and celebrations. Colombia's holiday season is a special time, and New Year's Eve is the final chord of the month-long festivities. Colombians also have several curious New Year traditions and superstitions to follow.

In Colombia, many believe that wearing yellow underwear on New Year's Eve can bring you luck. Another way to attract good luck is to stuff your pockets with lentils. And like many Spanish-speaking people, Colombians also have a tradition to eat 12 grapes exactly at midnight.

Burning a doll is another peculiar New Year tradition, popular with Colombians. It's meant to eliminate misfortunes and problems, accumulated during the old year. Many locals just stuff a doll with fireworks and launch it into the skies with the stroke of the clock.

Many Colombians spend NYE having family dinners; however, younger people prefer to attend street parties, nightclubs, or bars. The largest street parties are held in Cartagena.

Cartagena

The city on Colombia’s Caribbean coast is a perfect party destination. With its beautiful colonial houses and luxurious hotels, Cartagena is ideal for ringing in New Year in style. During the last night of the year, pop-up parties appear everywhere throughout the city. The atmosphere reminds a carnival, with music and dances on every corner.

The most popular location to watch the fireworks in Cartagena is Parque de la Marina. Many locals bring a picnic and spread out blankets right on the grass. Another great spot is Muelle de los Pegasos pier, with large pegasus statues. The area also has benches and vendors. Both places get quite crowded, so make sure to arrive early.

Medellin

Medellin is a less crowded alternative to the Caribbean Coast celebrations. Located in the mountains, the second-largest city in Colombia boasts an excellent food scene and plenty of rooftop bars to watch the fireworks from. Head to El Poblado neighborhood to pick your perfect spot to ring in New Year, or head to one of the city parks by the Medellin River to watch dazzling displays popping up in different areas of the city.

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