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4th December 2017 | Regional News

Celebrating Hogmanay in Scotland

For the majority of the world, December 31st is known as New Year’s Eve, a time for friends and families to come together to celebrate the new year. But not in Scotland. Although celebrations are relatively similar, Scotland has its own tradition, known as Hogmanay, renowned for being the biggest day in the Scottish festive calendar!

The most popular belief is that Hogmanay first began with the Vikings in the 8th and 9th centuries, when they marked the arrival of the Winter Solstice with parties throughout the night. Today, there are many traditions which people take part in to celebrate Hogmanay, including fireworks displays, fire parades and a sing-a-long to Auld Lang Syne.

With celebrations taking place for three days, up until 2nd January, there are always plenty of festivities taking place around this time of year. Here at Parkdean Holidays, we’ve put together a list of some of our favourite Hogmanay events and traditions for you to discover in Scotland.

Pitlochry Street Party

If you’re staying at Tummel Valley Holiday Park this New Year, then you’re just 30 minutes from a fantastic Hogmanay celebration. On January 1st, head to the Pitlochry Street Party on Atholl Road, for an afternoon of music, entertainment and tasty festive treats.

Every year, thousands of people flock to Pitlochry to enjoy a New Year’s Day like no other. Here, you can start off the year listening to the fantastic Vale of Atholl Pipe Band and many other incredible musicians, whilst dancing to the traditional Scottish ceilidh. If you’re bringing the kids along, then be sure to head to the Fishers Hotel in the afternoon, where you can see the local clown ‘Silly McB’ making all the children (and adults!) laugh.

No street party would be complete without some local grub, and here you’ll be able to sample some of the best. Macdonald Bros Butchers will be there providing over 2,000 sausage rolls and nearly 60 gallons of soup, sure to keep you warm on the frosty January afternoon. Pitlochry in Bloom, the town’s award-winning floral group, will also be there with sweets, popcorn and mulled wine. Don’t miss the main event at the end of the day, where everyone comes together to form a large circle and sing the classic ‘Auld Lang Syne’.

Video sourced from Adam Birr

Hogmanay in Stirling

Hogmanay in Stirling has always been huge, but this year, the city is hosting its biggest ever firework display at midnight on December 31st. The New Year’s Eve celebrations will be taking place along the Stirling Castle esplanade, just over an hour from Wemyss Bay Holiday Park, with the historic fortress providing a beautiful backdrop.

And there’s not just one firework show to enjoy on the night. From 7.45pm to 9.15pm, visitors can enjoy the family fireworks display, where there’ll be a live acoustic set from BBC’s ‘The Voice’ winner, Steve McCrorie. Or, if you hang around until later, from 10.45pm to 12.15am, you’ll be entertained by Stirling City Radio and a variety of live DJ sets.

Throughout the celebrations, there’ll be talented drumming and piping groups, tasty treat stalls and an outdoor bar to keep the adults happy. There are also plenty of other events taking place around Stirling on the 31st too. Families will love the free lantern-making workshop and the traditional ceilidh, with dinner and entertainment in the Albert Hall.

Video sourced from Tommy Smith

Ashton Lane Hogmanay Party

If you’re over 18 and looking to dance the night away this New Year’s Eve, then head to Ashton Lane Hogmanay Party, under an hour from Wemyss Bay Holiday Park. Located in the heart of Glasgow’s dazzling West End, this annual Hogmanay celebration is said to be bigger and better than ever this year.

Enter 2018 in style under the twinkly fairy-lit canopy, hanging over the famous cobbled street, where there’ll be food stalls, live bands and even a few surprises to see you into the new year. Tickets cost £25, and include entry into every bar on the street. From live DJs and street performers to outdoor bars and barbeques, there’s something to suit everyone at this annual party.

As well as a good night out, you’ll also experience some Scottish traditions, including Scottish pipers and ceilidh bands. Everyone is encouraged to wear something tartan, so be sure to take a trip to some of Glasgow’s local shops beforehand! If you can keep up with the party until midnight, you’ll get to see a sparkling firework show when the clock strikes 12.

Video sourced from Ashton Lane Street Party

Edinburgh Celebrations

No holiday in Scotland would be complete without a trip to the capital, and there’s no better time to visit than over the Hogmanay period! Edinburgh’s fascinating history and culture has made it the second most popular tourist destination in the UK, meaning the city goes all out when it comes to celebrations such as Hogmanay.

There’s so much going on in the city on the 31st December, so you won’t be stuck for something to do. One of the most popular events is the Concert in the Gardens, where you’ll see a variety of incredible artists, including the headline act, Rag’n’Bone Man. From here, you’ll also get the best views of the fireworks, over the iconic Edinburgh Castle. Or, you could head to the Torchlight Procession, where you can take part in a walk to light up the city, accompanied by traditional Scottish music.

If you’re looking for something to keep the little ones entertained, then the Baby Loves Disco event is perfect. This afternoon event gives your tiny dancers the chance to have lots of fun at their very own little disco. There’s also a candlelit concert and one of the best street parties in the country. And the festivities don’t stop there! If you’re feeling daring, pop down to the River Forth on January 1st for a refreshing, traditional New Year’s Day dip in the chilly waters to raise money for charity.

Video sourced from BBC

Have you been to any fantastic Hogmanay events in Scotland? Share your stories with us on our Facebook and Twitter pages.

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