Austria celebrates New Year’s Day with a public holiday every 1 January, as does most of the rest of the world. However, the celebrations really begin on New Year’s Eve and reach a high point with the turning of the clock from 11:59pm on 31 December to midnight on 1 January.
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New Year’s Day is a time of resolutions and starting fresh for some, while for others it is spent recovering from a big, late night spent with friends and family.
Austria celebrates New Year’s Day like most of the rest of the world. Vienna is the centre of New Year festivities in Austria, though it’s a nationwide event.
Interestingly, New Year’s Eve is also called “Sylvesterfad” or just “Silvester” in Austria in honour of the saint and pope who went by that name and died on 31 December in the year A.D. 335.
At around 2pm on New Year’s Eve, concerts will erupt in the streets of Vienna. At midnight, the famed Pummerin Bell of Saint Stephen’s Cathedral rings out loud, and fireworks explode all over the city sky. At that point, the Blue Danube Waltz is played as everyone dances in the streets. Celebrations generally last until around 2am on 1 January.
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