Sydney was preparing to host the world’s biggest fireworks extravaganza on New Year’s Eve, undeterred by fears over the Omicron strain of Covid-19 and rapidly rising case numbers.

After months of lockdowns and restrictions, die-hard revellers were determined to glam up and get close to the action for the dazzling New Years’ Eve spectacle, albeit in smaller numbers than the pre-pandemic times in Sydney and also in Melbourne, Adelaide and Brisbane which also hosted major fireworks shows.

First up was Sydney’s 9pm display, watched by excited locals who gathered in their thousands around the city’s picturesque harbour on a warm night.

Sydney organisers planned the biggest New Year’s Eve display since the pandemic began, with six tonnes – around 2000 fireworks – set to be used for its annual midnight extravaganza which is seen by up to a billion people worldwide.

While the pandemic was clearly convincing many to stay home, thousands were determined to see the world-famous fireworks.   

Those who accepted the advice they were far safer from Covid-19 outdoors than indoors were rewarded with light queues and prime viewing positions for the show. 

Many of those who took up the best spots in the afternoon had come from interstate – particularly Melbourne – as Sydneysiders made the decision to stay closer to home. 

The party is also ramping up in Melbourne after New Year celebrations were scrapped in 2020 due to coronavirus.

This year, there will be four dedicated zones at Flagstaff Gardens, Treasury Gardens, Alexandra Gardens and Docklands hosting street parties, outdoor dining, entertainment and live music.

Thousands are flooding into the Beyond the City music festival at the Sidney Myer Music Bowl in Kings Domain parkland with acts like Jaguar Jonze, Hayden James, Pnau, Lime Cordiale, Ball Park Music and Mallrat set to take the stage.

 SYDNEY

Sydney was preparing to host the world's biggest fireworks extravaganza on New Year's Eve, undeterred by fears over the Omicron Covid-19 variant and rapidly rising case numbers

Sydney was preparing to host the world's biggest fireworks extravaganza on New Year's Eve, undeterred by fears over the Omicron Covid-19 variant and rapidly rising case numbers

Sydney was preparing to host the world’s biggest fireworks extravaganza on New Year’s Eve, undeterred by fears over the Omicron Covid-19 variant and rapidly rising case numbers

What's an Omicron? Sydney revellers

What's an Omicron? Sydney revellers

What’s an Omicron? Sydney revellers 

 

It was a second subdued New Year's Even on Sydney Harbour as the pandemic kept usually boisterous revellers away in droves. Friends (L-R) Danni Moore, 29, Tara Delaney, 28, and Sarah Kimberlin, had flown up from Melbourne for the fireworks

It was a second subdued New Year's Even on Sydney Harbour as the pandemic kept usually boisterous revellers away in droves. Friends (L-R) Danni Moore, 29, Tara Delaney, 28, and Sarah Kimberlin, had flown up from Melbourne for the fireworks

It was a second subdued New Year’s Even on Sydney Harbour as the pandemic kept usually boisterous revellers away in droves. Friends (L-R) Danni Moore, 29, Tara Delaney, 28, and Sarah Kimberlin, had flown up from Melbourne for the fireworks

The best seat in the house! Queues start to form at the Opera Bar directly opposite the Harbour Bridge

The best seat in the house! Queues start to form at the Opera Bar directly opposite the Harbour Bridge

The best seat in the house! Queues start to form at the Opera Bar directly opposite the Harbour Bridge

Where once a million spectators would gather around the water's edge to see the city's world-famous fireworks display, this year's celebrations were low-key. Husband and wife Diana Mosquera, 32, and Omar Campos, 33, enjoyed getting out of their Sydney home

Where once a million spectators would gather around the water's edge to see the city's world-famous fireworks display, this year's celebrations were low-key. Husband and wife Diana Mosquera, 32, and Omar Campos, 33, enjoyed getting out of their Sydney home

Where once a million spectators would gather around the water’s edge to see the city’s world-famous fireworks display, this year’s celebrations were low-key. Husband and wife Diana Mosquera, 32, and Omar Campos, 33, enjoyed getting out of their Sydney home

 MELBOURNE

Revellers arrive en masse for the Beyond The City music festival at Sidney Myer Music Bowl on December 31, 2021 in Melbourne

Revellers arrive en masse for the Beyond The City music festival at Sidney Myer Music Bowl on December 31, 2021 in Melbourne

Revellers arrive en masse for the Beyond The City music festival at Sidney Myer Music Bowl on December 31, 2021 in Melbourne

Pop singer Jaguar Jonze (pictured) performs to the crowd at the Beyond The City music festival at Sidney Myer Music Bowl on December 31, 2021 in Melbourne

Pop singer Jaguar Jonze (pictured) performs to the crowd at the Beyond The City music festival at Sidney Myer Music Bowl on December 31, 2021 in Melbourne

Pop singer Jaguar Jonze (pictured) performs to the crowd at the Beyond The City music festival at Sidney Myer Music Bowl on December 31, 2021 in Melbourne

  

A glammed up crew of girls gets set for a wild night of celebrations in Melbourne as the city prepares to welcome the new year

A glammed up crew of girls gets set for a wild night of celebrations in Melbourne as the city prepares to welcome the new year

A glammed up crew of girls gets set for a wild night of celebrations in Melbourne as the city prepares to welcome the new year

Melbourne crowds lined up for a night of celebrations at the Beyond The City music festival, despite soaring Covid infections across Victoria and the rest of Australia

Melbourne crowds lined up for a night of celebrations at the Beyond The City music festival, despite soaring Covid infections across Victoria and the rest of Australia

Melbourne crowds lined up for a night of celebrations at the Beyond The City music festival, despite soaring Covid infections across Victoria and the rest of Australia

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