If you are looking for somewhere to celebrate the start of 2013, Devon has an array of New Year’s Eve events to choose from.
Whether you fancy a six course gourmet feast, live music or fireworks there are any number of ways to mark the occasion.
In recent years both Bideford and Dartmouth have seen thousands of revellers flock there in search of the UK’s best New Year party. Once again the streets are set to be filled with fancy dress-clad visitors looking to see out 2013 in style.
Other highlights around the county include a Michelin-starred gastronomic voyage at The Elephant in Torquay and family-fun in Barnstaple town centre.
One place offering something for everyone on December 31 is the Royal Castle Hotel in Dartmouth. The venue is offering a gala buffet upstairs, two bars downstairs and a firework display at midnight
Manager Lucy Jonas said: “We really have something for everyone this year. There will be DJs in the Harbour Bar so if people want to dance and party they can go there but if they want to be a bit more sedate they can sit in our Galleon Bar. We also have our gala buffet upstairs which is proving really popular already.”
As well as providing plenty of entertainment of its own, the Royal Castle is also offering people the chance to sample the night life in Dartmouth. Your ticket includes free re-entry to the hotel throughout the evening ensuring you get the best of both worlds.
Lucy said: “We have re-entry all night so people can go and soak up the atmosphere for a bit and then come back here.
“Dartmouth has become quite famous for New Year so people like to go into town to see what is going on but it gets very busy. Upstairs people get their table all night so after the buffet they can go out and come back to the same table overlooking the river where you get great views of the fireworks and the Dartmouth Christmas lights.”
For details on how to book your ticket at the Royal Castle plus our pick of the other best New Year’s Eve destinations in Devon check out the list below.
- Buckland Tout-Saints Hotel, Goveton, Kingsbridge, TQ7 2DS, 01548 853055.
What: Gala Ball.
Price: £75 per person.
With fireworks and champagne at midnight the Buckland Tout-Sains hotel’s New Year’s Eve Gala Ball is guaranteed to go off with a bang.
The evening will kick-off with cocktails and canapés before guests sit down to enjoy a splendid five course dinner.
Music then takes centre stage with a live set from local favourites The Penguins before the New Year is celebrated in explosive fashion.
- South Sands Hotel, Bolt Head, Salcombe, TQ8 8LL, 01548 845900.
What: Buffet and live music.
When: Until 2am.
Price: £75 per person.
The South Sands Hotel is promising to celebrate the end of 2012 in style with a heady mix of champagne, music and pyrotechnics.
Housed in a marquee, guests will be treated to a glass of bubbly on arrival before enjoying a sumptuous buffet put together by the venue’s acclaimed restaurant team.
Live music and dancing the night away are then the order of the day, with a brief stop to watch the fireworks outside as the clock strikes 12am.
- The Royal Castle Hotel, The Quay, Dartmouth, TQ6 9PS, 01803 833033.
What: Gala buffet, fireworks DJs, drinks offers and breakfast buffet.
When: From 6pm.
Price: £25 per person.
The Royal Castle is offering revellers in Dartmouth the best of both worlds this New Year. Not only is the hotel throwing an unbeatable bash of its own, your ticket will also allow you free re-entry all night so you can enjoy the town’s famous fancy dress street party.
But guests will want to make sure they are back by midnight to take in a firework display from the roof of the hotel.
Inside the venue, you can choose from a gala buffet upstairs or join in the fun downstairs where there will be half price promotions between 6pm-8pm and a DJ in the Harbour Bar.
Your ticket price also includes a breakfast buffet between 1am-2am and a £5 voucher for a bar meal which is valid until the end of January.
- Bideford, Town centre and Quay.
What: Carnival, fireworks and fancy dress.
Not only is Bideford one of the best places to celebrate the turn of the year in Devon it has twice been heralded in the national press as hosting one of the top ten New Year’s Eve events in the world.
As well as its picturesque setting, the town’s secret is a combination of fireworks, fancy dress and fun.
On December 31 the roads are closed to traffic allowing a carnival procession to dance its way through the town where you can enjoy live music and a wide range of other activities.
At midnight huge crowds in fancy dress congregate along the Quay for a countdown featuring the chimes of Big Ben and a lone piper playing Auld Lang Syne, followed by a sensational firework display.
What: Seven course menu.
Price: £89.50 per person.
For a Michelin-starred end to 2012 book a table at the award-winning Elephant.
The restaurant has devised a stunning six course menu designed to make your last meal of the year one to remember.
Starting with a champagne cocktail on arrival you will be spoilt with an array of delectable dishes like salted toffee pea soup with hog’s pudding and a choice of loin of venison or spider crab risotto.
Other courses include award winning local cheeses and elderflower crème with poached strawberries and a strawberry and lemon verbena sphere.
- Barnstaple, The Square, EX32 8LS.
What: Live entertainment, music, children’s activities and fireworks.
For a family-friendly New Year’s Eve celebration head down to The Square in Barnstaple.
On December 31 it will be transformed with a large music stage, bouncy castles and an array of games and fun activities.
Sparks will fly at midnight with a magnificent firework display over the river Taw.
- Browns, 80 West Street, Tavistock, PL19 8AQ, 01822 618686
What: Six course dinner with or without matching wines and live music.
When: Bar open from 6pm, dinner served at 7.30pm, entertainment until 1.30am.
Price: Six course dinner with ‘flights of wine’ £100 per person. Six course dinner only, £69.50 per person.
For a deliciously indulgent December 31 come and be wined and dined in style at Browns.
The hotel is offering a sumptuous six course tasting menu that can be enjoyed with or without the added opulence of a matching wine menu.
Created from the very freshest, festive produce it promises to takes you on a journey of taste, texture temperature with dishes including game bird terrine, roast venison and Clementine jelly.
The night also features live music from the Nick Coles Band who reference everyone from Damien Rice to Bill Withers.
- The Venue, 80 Torwood Street, Torquay, TQ1 1ED, 01803 403350.
What: Club night.
Offering one of the biggest parties in town, The Venue is the place to be if you are looking to celebrate New Year’s Eve on the dancefloor.
The club’s resident DJs will be in action throughout the night and there are half price drinks between 12am-1am.
The first 50 revellers through the door will be given a mystery prize.
- Dartmouth, Town Centre and Harbour.
What: Fancy dress street party and fireworks.
Second only to Bideford when it comes to New Year’s Eve destinations in Devon, Dartmouth’s annual party has people flocking from far and wide.
The night starts with a fancy dress street party and ends with fireworks over the picturesque harbour.
- The Horn of Plenty Hotel, Gulworthy, Tavistock, PL19 8JD, 01822 832528.
What: Seven course dinner.
When: From 7pm.
Price: £95 per person.
Treat yourself to an evening of gastronomic delight this December 31 with a visit to the Horn of Plenty.
The hotel’s award-winning restaurant is serving up a decadent six course dinner starting with Jerusalem artichoke and truffle veloute and finishing with chocolate and ginger assiette.
In between you can sample a range of delightful dishes including beef tartare, lemon sole in lobster butter and venison fillet with chicory jam.