Perfect Destinations To Ring In The New Year For Outdoorsy Folks, According To Travel Reddit

New Year's is a great time to travel, and if you consider yourself an outdoors enthusiast, there are plenty of destinations around the world that would make a great trip. Who wouldn't want to celebrate another 365 days of life in a place surrounded by mountains, oceans, forests, or all of the above? Nature-oriented trips are a great niche to help you narrow down where you'd like to ring in another year. Do you want to hike in the Alps and sip wine around Europe? Do you want to escape the cold altogether and head south? Or maybe you're still deciding. 

Well, don't stress, because we've rounded up a dozen fabulous New Year's destinations for outdoorsy folks. We've scoured various forums on Travel Reddit to determine where accomplished travelers have had their best start-of-the-year trips. We've chosen destinations that received multiple votes from various Redditors. We then explored the outdoors-travel forums to research where nature-loving travelers have enjoyed taking winter trips. We cross-checked these "fun places to spend NYE" with those voted as good "outdoorsy" winter destinations to come up with our list. And we've amassed quite the variety with numerous continents, climates, and landscapes represented to help you plan your best New Year's yet!

Sedona, Arizona

Sedona has topped wellness destination lists for many years. But years before it turned into the premiere place to be healed by a vortex, the northern Arizona town was a haven for nature enthusiasts, with the nearby Red Rocks, Sedona Wetlands Preserve, and Mund Mountains. And unlike many other states, you can hike year-round in Sedona without fear of ice or snow, even at the end of the year. Other fun activities include horseback riding and biking. Additionally, the Grand Canyon is only a couple hours' drive away, should you want to cross this American natural wonder off your bucket list. Alternatively, Sedona is a great place to unwind and relax after a major hike like the Canyon, should you have tackled the giant pre-holiday.

Reddit user CoolJeweledMoon points out that Sedona is a "beautiful area" not to be ruled out in a discussion where the OP mentions Tucson/Scottsdale and southern Arizona as good warm winter destinations. Additionally, Tashi_88 mentions in a separate discussion that the Grand Canyon is very enjoyable during New Year's as visitor numbers are low. Just be prepared for snow, since the rim is properly in winter while the bottom of the canyon can feel more like spring. Pre-game your party with a day on the trails and then ring in the New Year with a cocktail in hand while gazing at the stars, thanks to Sedona's clear skies.

Tromso, Norway

Want a New Year's memory you'll never forget? Then head to Tromso where you'll have a high chance of seeing the northern lights as you toast another year gone by. Honestly, Tromso wasn't initially on our radar for this list, but after reading a comment from an anonymous Redditor that details a fantastic New Year's in the north of Norway hunting northern lights, we're on board. The town's location, a couple hundred miles from the Arctic Circle, means the aurora borealis can be seen every year between September and April. The New Year's holiday falls right in the middle of the season, so it's a great time to visit.

And, since we're all outdoorsy folk reading this article, there is wonderful nature nearby. The city is located along several fjords, so a sea view is never far on any hike in the area. Additionally, Mount Storsteinen is a great place to take in panoramas of the area and potentially catch a glimpse of the aurora. You can opt for the cable car if you're feeling a bit tired or have had enough trekking for the day. Just note that should you choose Tromso for your New Year's trip, the town is quite small. So don't expect any massive blowout parties. However, there are some nice places to celebrate like Fjellheisen, a sky-high restaurant where you'll have epic views of the fireworks show.

Montréal, Québec

Montréal is one of Canada's biggest cities, which means there is no shortage of great spots to celebrate a brand new year. The city was a favorite throughout Reddit travel forums for winter trips and New Year's. Make sure to check out Vieux Montréal, the Old Port, and Saint-Laurent Boulevard. Beyond the fantastic fêtes, Montreal is well situated near numerous opportunities to enjoy the best of winter outdoors. January is right in the middle of the snow season and no one quite knows how to embrace it quite like the Quebecois!

Mount Royal, the central mountain that gives the city its name, is a haven for cross-country skiers in winter. You can also enjoy a snow globe-worthy hike on the mountain or sled down one of the numerous hills. Alternatively, bring or rent a pair of skates to use on one of the rinks that go up in December and stay open all winter long. If you want to get out of the city, Mount Saint Bruno National Park is only a 30-minute drive away. It is the nearest downhill run to Montréal and, for those less slope-inclined, there are miles of trails. Take a snowy hike or rent a pair of snowshoes to try out a different kind of winter walk.

Queenstown, New Zealand

If you love nature and want to travel at the beginning of the year, but you don't love winter, just fly south! New Zealand is a top destination among those who love the outdoors, and New Year's is right in the heart of the country's summer. So if you want to go trekking before ringing in another year or enjoy another non-winter activity, it's the perfect place to travel, according to AbsolutleyNotGronk in a Reddit New Year's forum. Queenstown is an especially great base because of its proximity to iconic hikes and beaches. It's also the self-proclaimed "adventure capital" of the country. So should you want to infuse a little adrenaline into your New Year's escape, this is the place to do it! From bungee jumping and skydiving to white water rafting and ziplining, you'll never be bored in Queenstown.

If more low-key adventures are more your thing, there's plenty on offer as well. You can take day trips and explore the iconic Milford Sound by boat or on foot, or even embark on a multi-day trek. In fact, three of New Zealand's "Great Walks" are located nearby: The Routeburn Track, The Milford Track, and The Kepler Track. You'll need to book ahead of time with the Department of Conservation. Finally, as one of the largest cities on the South Island, there will be no shortage of fun places to celebrate on the evening of December 31st, once you've explored all the surrounding nature during the day.

Mendoza, Argentina

If you like wine, outdoor adventure, low-key parties, and avoiding frigid temps, Mendoza is an ideal location for a New Year's trip. This smaller city in the heart of Argentinian wine country has all of the above. And it's another great option for those looking to skip winter at the start of the next year. Mendoza is best known for numerous wineries and for producing world-famous Malbec, Syrah, and Bonarda grapes. There are many vineyard hotels in and around the city, perfect for adventuring and wine-tasting without needing to go anywhere. 

If you have the itch to see more than just wineries or just want to get out, you'll find quite a unique activity in Mendoza in the form of wine and bike tours, where you bike around to different tastings. Good for a bit of exercise and you'll have longer breaks in between locations, so you don't become too wobbly on your new wheels.

Beyond the perfect varietals to toast another year, Mendoza is ideally placed in the foothills of the Andes, in the Mendoza River valley. So you can easily take a day or two (or more) to explore the mountains on foot. Alternatively, go horseback riding — the Argentine way to see the country!

Rio de Janeiro, Brazil

Another Southern Hemisphere option for outdoorsy folks who prefer to enjoy nature without a million winter layers is Rio de Janeiro. New Year's is known to be epic in Rio and the Brazilian city came up in almost every "where to spend NYE" discussion we combed through. It's known for massive celebrations on the final night of the year, which those in Rio call "Réveillon." It's the second biggest party of the year, beaten out only by Carnaval. Just keep in mind "You will pay through the nose to spend NYE in Rio, but it will be awesome" according to Reddit user HarryBlessKnapp.

Rio might be most famous for dreamy beaches and larger-than-life parties, but the city also has great proximity to some amazing hikes. The Pedra Bonita hike is the perfect way to catch views of the city or beach and it's easily accessible by bus. Alternatively, check out the Morro Da Urca trail up Sugarloaf, one of the easier and quicker options. Remember, thoughm that the New Year's period will be right at the start of Brazilian summer. It will be hot and likely humid on the trails, so pack plenty of water and don't go in the middle of the day.

Tignes, France

Want to ski all day and then indulge in some of the best food and wine in Europe for New Year's? Well, the French Alps have you covered, specifically the town of Tignes. Reddit user segacs2spent "a New Year's at Tignes in the French Alps one year that was pretty cool. There was a big party at the base of the ski hill, with a DJ and a big countdown projected onto the mountain." Now if that doesn't sound like a good time, then we don't know what does!

Tignes is located in the Savoie part of the Alps, right near the border with Italy. Thus, you'll find some unique views from the tops of many of the ski runs. The resort is also known for being friendly to skiers of all levels, so it's a great place for a group trip where not everyone is a frequent slope visitor. In addition to amazing ski runs, travelers also have the option to partake in various winter sports such as cross-country skiing, snow mountain biking, and snowshoeing. The town also hosts amazing New Year's celebrations, unlike some ski towns that are a bit sleepier.

Sydney, Australia

Sydney is an easy win for those who favor warm-weather winter destinations, and the city is famously a top destination for New Year's Eve celebrations. It was named numerous times in our Reddit search thanks to endless parties and the epic fireworks over the Harbor Bridge. One of the best ways to celebrate is to set up shop with a picnic, a decent drinks supply, and barbeque along the many miles of waterfront during the day on December 31st. That way, you'll already have a prime viewing spot for the evening and will beat the evening traffic rush.

Beyond the endless parties and blowout shows, Sydney is a great city for those who love the outdoors. You don't even need to leave city limits to do so, just hop on a ferry or bus, and in less than an hour (no matter your origin) you'll be walking along that beautiful Australian coastline. Head to the Eastern Suburbs and follow the famous-before-Instagram Bondi to Coogee walk, stopping at the tiny beaches along the way. Or, take the ferry from Circular Quay right downtown to Manly and embark on the Manly to Spit Bridge trail. You can also do this route in reverse by taking the bus to Spit Bridge and ending at the beach. Finally, you can take a different ferry to Taronga Zoo and walk the Bradleys Head to Chowder Bay path for fantastic views of the Opera House.

Glasgow, Scotland

Travelers heading to the United Kingdom for New Year's typically favor destinations such as Edinburgh and London. However, numerous folks on Travel Reddit made the very good point that these places can be unpleasantly crowded during the holiday. If you want to have the most enjoyable experience, you best head elsewhere  — and Edinburgh's often overlooked neighbor Glasgow is the ideal location. 

The decent-sized city is actually larger than the Scottish capital and has plenty to do on Hogmanay (what Scots call New Year's and way more than just the changing of date.) Per Redditor paranomad "The partying is fierce. It starts with a real bang at midnight with the bells and continues for as long as possible into 1st Jan. The 2nd is a national holiday just to recover."

Additionally, larger mountains for hiking and other outdoor sports enthusiasts are much more easily reached from Glasgow. In about an hour or less, you'll be immersed in superb Scottish nature. Popular hiking destinations such as Conic Hill, Ben Lomond, and Beinn Narnain are all accessible via public transport. No need to deal with a car rental post-NYE hangover!

Zurich, Switzerland

Switzerland is a top place to visit for outdoorsy folk, especially in winter when you can take trains and gondolas up to some of the best ski runs in Europe. Sure, you might need to fork out more to visit Zurich than for many other destinations on this list, but it'll be more than worth it. As detailed on Reddit by dancepuppetsdance, the lakeshore is awash with people looking to celebrate. Numerous food stalls serve up that coveted Swiss cheese (including fondu) and there is a great fireworks display right in the middle of the lake.

It's also a safe city (a fact many Redditors agreed on), perfect for that solo trip where you still want to party a bit! As for the outdoors portion of your trip, trains leave Zurich central for the mountains on almost an hourly schedule in winter. And you don't have to limit yourself to skiing — many Swiss resorts offer tobogganing, snowboarding, and snowshoeing options. Or, you could always just enjoy the lodge spa or warm up with a drink at the bar!

Reykjavik, Iceland

Reykjavik might seem like a sleepier capital to ring in the New Year than say, Paris or London, but it actually does the holiday quite well, better than you might initially assume. According to Redditor nmasino "It's amazing! I've been to Dublin, Rome, [and NYC] for [NYE] and none were even cl[o]se to Iceland." That's a pretty stellar endorsement from most people who have visited the country, no matter the season. On New Year's Eve, though, there is a schedule you'll need to be aware of as a visitor. Dinner is around 6 or 7 p.m. followed by large bonfires and fireworks to say goodbye to the year that is about to end.

Then, everyone goes home for the special newscasts and comedy shows until about 10:30 p.m. when you'll need to suit up for Icelandic winter again. More fireworks are set off before a long night of partying in the capital until early the next morning. Reykjavik is also well-placed with tons of winter activities nearby like glacier hiking, caving, and horseback riding.

Whistler, Canada

Canada's premier ski destination is also a top place to party in winter. In fact, the après ski is almost more popular than the actual slopes among many of the crowds who frequent the mountain town. You'll see numerous people who don't even ski or snowboard there throughout the season, just going to party. As confirmed by numerous Reddit discussions in both the travel and ski space, those fêtes are legendary. The nightlife is always on point in Whistler, but on New Year's it's on another level. And there's something for everyone, which makes the town a great option for family trips. The bars and clubs will be hopping for the younger crowd, upper-end galas if you want a fancy finish to your ski adventure, and a big party in the center of the village with ski jumps and fireworks.

As an added bonus, your U.S. dollar will go much further here than in many resorts stateside. Whistler receives more snow than even famous American slopes like Vail and Breckenridge and is larger than a lot of runs across the border.