The December holidays can be a bittersweet time for people around the world, but mostly for people who are away from their homes. Like expats. On the one hand, there is the excitement about spending the holidays in a new place, with new people and new traditions. On the other hand, being away from family members and friends from home is not easy at all.
However, the last night of the year calls for a celebration!
I’ve gathered a list of five New Year’s Eve parties in Lisbon that you can join depending on your preferences, your mood and your budget.
There are options if you prefer to be outside at a big party, if you want to go over the top and wear a gown or suit at a fancy venue or if you want to have a chef-prepared meal. And I have options if you only want to watch fireworks in a relaxed environment while having a glass of champagne.
Fancy club vibes
If you want to say goodbye to 2023 at a fancy celebration wearing beautiful makeup, a gown or a tuxedo, make sure to buy a ticket for this one. The location is definitely one of the highlights for this party because the building has amazing typical Portuguese decorations over the main hall walls, which makes it perfect for your unique NYE pictures.
The venue is located in Eduardo VII park, so you can go outside watch the fireworks from there at midnight with the unique view of Lisbon that it offers.
This is the 9th edition of the Royal Palace New Year’s Eve and year after year, the tickets sell out very quickly because it’s one of the best parties in Lisbon. Fortunately, there are still some normal and VIP tickets available online. The entrance is open at 10 p.m., but you can access anytime, and the party goes on until 6 a.m.! Besides having music all night long with great DJs, some recognized international singers like Soraia Ramos will be performing at this party.
NYE outdoors with a view
Jardim 9 de abril I Dress is semi-formal I Tickets from 20 euros
One of the advantages of living in Lisbon is that the weather is perfect to celebrate Christmas and New Year’s Eve outdoors. This party happens at one of the most perfect locations to enjoy the fireworks outdoors with some electronic music played by DJ Hugo Villanova. The Catch Me venue is a beautiful and spacious garden to which you will have access from 11:15 p.m., with the party going on till 4 a.m. The dress code is semi-formal but if I were you, I would add a coat to my outfit because it can get chilly after midnight when you’re outside.
The ticket per person is 20 euros and it includes one flute of sparkling wine, raisins and a late mini-supper. The reason why you get raisins is because eating them is a Portuguese tradition during NYE: You are supposed to eat 12 raisins during the last 12 minutes of 2023 and make a wish for each month of 2024.
Tickets are still available online.
Outdoors with a big crowd
Terreiro do Paço I Dress is casual I Free entrance
Do you want to say goodbye to 2023 at the biggest celebration in Lisbon? If so, this is your type of party and the good news is that it is completely free! The celebration starts at 9:30 pm with a DJ set, then there will be a live concert from a local Portuguese band (Os Quatro e Meia) at 10:30 p.m. and at midnight, the 13-minute firework show starts! After this, there will be more music until 1 a.m. and people either go home or keep celebrating in the streets of Lisbon.
Because it is a public event there are some forbidden items you can’t access with, such as weapons, firearms, glass containers, explosives, drugs, selfie sticks, megaphones, stools, chairs, air horns and laser pointers. This event happens every year, so the logistics are pinned down already But I must say that I have been there and it gets really, really crowded because it’s the favorite venue for Portuguese and foreign people to celebrate. So, if you get easily overwhelmed by noise, lights or big crowds of people, this is not the place for you.
Over the top dinner
Estrada da Lagoa Azul I Dress is formal I Tickets start at 375 euros
If you want to close the year in an elegant but quiet manner with a Michelin-starred dinner, this is the place for you. The menu for NYE celebrates a journey from the 20th century to today. Prepared by international chefs Sergi Arola and Vladimir Veiga, it includes wine pairing as well. Dinner starts at 7 p.m. and it includes dishes with caviar, sardines and a sea bass fricassé among many other delicacies.
The resort has also prepared packages with breakfast in case you want to spend the night in their suites, which used to be a summer house for members of the monarchy during the XIV century. For reservations you can send an email to: [email protected] or call: (+351) 910 001 518.
Dance, dance, dance!
If your ideal plan for NYE is to dance the night away, make sure to buy tickets for this party while they are still available. The doors will open at 10 p.m. and four guest DJs will be setting the mood for the best funk and reggaeton party in Lisbon until 6 a.m. Ticket prices start at 25 euros and can go up to 50 euros, but the most expensive one includes free drinks all night long and, this is, of course, a party for people over 18 years old.
One of the things that make it so special is its location because it’s an old warehouse that has been restored as a cultural venue close to the city center. So, even though you will not be able to watch the fireworks from there, this is the perfect party to attend after enjoying them in an outdoors location such as Terreiro do Paço.
The dress code is casual but since the theme is inspired by the series “Euphoria,” make sure to choose bold and expressive makeup and outfits.
Read more about Lisbon here in Dispatches’ archives.
Mónica da Silva is half-Venezuelan, half Portuguese and has lived in Venezuela, Portugal, Spain and Germany. She has studies linguistics and has a Bachelor’s Degree in European Studies. Besides contributing to Dispatches, she works remotely as an English teacher, which allows her to be on the move as often as she wants.