The fireworks on new year's eve in San Francisco are the definite highlight of the celebrations, lighting up the bay and visible for miles around in every direction, you will be left in no doubt as to when midnight has arrived.
Elsewhere across the city there are a huge variety of new year parties and events to choose from, with the San Francisco bars, clubs, hotels and resturants hosting a number of top NYE celebrations. It's impossible to list them all, so we'll be picking our favourite recommendations for you.
The San Francisco new year's eve fireworks last 15-20 minutes and are launched on the stroke of midnight from specially positioned boat that is moored out on the bay, so anywhere near the Ferry Building and the San Francisco - Oakland Bay Bridge will get you a front row seat, although it is important to arrive early, with the best spots generally taken by around 7pm.
The best vantage points are along the Embarcadero to the south of the Ferry Building, where the large sidewalks allow plenty of space to gather - there are some benches, but they will be snapped up very quickly.
You'll also find many families setting up camp with blankets and picnics to wait out the evening in Rincon Park, which is also ideally situated right on the waterfront.
With the fireworks being launched from out on the water then it makes sense to head out there for a front row view,and there are plenty of new year's eve cruises to choose from.
One excellent option is to head onboard the fabulous San Francisco Belle. This former Louisiana floating casino is a landmark in San Francisco and offers a fantastic New Year's Eve Dinner Cruise, with a full dinner buffet, drinks from several VIP cocktail bars, dancing on 3 levels and of course the massive roof deck from where you can watch the fireworks.
You can buy your tickets for this event online here.
Another event that is fast becoming a San Francisco new year institution is the Speakeasy new year's eve cruise on board the Fume Blanc Commodore, a faithful replica of a New York State Hudson River Steamboat, arranged over 3 decks and over 76 feet long.
The new year's eve cruise has a 1920's Speakeasy theme and includes black jack tables and dealers, an open bar, music from live DJs and of course those magnificent bay views.
Tickets for this event will sell out quickly, so secure your as soon as you can here.
There are some great new year parties to choose from on the many bars and clubs of San Francisco, with one very popular options always the new year's eve party at the Cat Club on Folsom in SOMA, with music and dancing throughout the evening at a party that goes on until 3am on new year's day.
This is a ticketed event, get yours here.
Rooms with a view of the fireworks are very much in demand, so advance booking if you would like to secure a place in one of these is very important. Most places will also offer packages including room and dinner.
Top options to consider include:
Hyatt Regency at the Embarcadero Center,
W San Francisco
The Mandarin Oriental
You can reserve your room at these, and all of the top San Francisco hotels here
With such a spectacular setting, there is no problem finding live coverage of the new year fireworks from San Francisco, with TV and live streaming available as well as some perfectly positioned webcams.
Check out all the best live coverage here:
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