As the year draws to a close and the air fills with an infectious sense of anticipation, there’s no better place to bid farewell to the old and welcome the new than in the charming city of Cincinnati. Queen City offers many exciting activities to ensure a memorable New Year’s Eve celebration. From family-friendly events to vibrant nightlife, Cincinnati has something for everyone. In this ultimate guide, we’ve curated a list of five must-do activities to make your New Year’s Eve unforgettable. Let’s dive in!

1.Join the Spectacular Fountain Square Bash Fountain Square

The heart of downtown Cincinnati is the place to be on New Year’s Eve. The square comes alive with a free, public bash that promises fun for all ages. As the night progresses, the energy rises, and the excitement builds up to the grand countdown.

The highlight of the evening is the dazzling fireworks show that lights up the Cincinnati skyline. Gather your friends and family around and witness the stunning display that marks the start of a brand-new year. Be sure to snag a good spot early, as this event attracts thousands of enthusiastic revelers.

2.Delight in the Magic of Cincinnati Zoo Festival of Lights

If you want the most enchanting experience forNew Year’s Eve in Cincinnati, head to the Cincinnati Zoo & Botanical Garden. The zoo hosts its annual Festival of Lights during the holiday season, extending the festivities until New Year’s Eve.

Stroll through the mesmerizing winter wonderland with millions of twinkling lights, charming holiday displays, and captivating animal exhibits. The Festival of Lights is a perfect family-friendly activity where both young and old can delight in the magical atmosphere. End your evening by counting down to midnight with the zoo’s special celebration.

3.Cruise into the New Year with BB Riverboats

For a unique and elegant celebration, step aboard one of the BB Riverboats for their New Year’s Eve cruises along the Ohio River. Sail into the night while enjoying spectacular views of the city skyline and the riverfront illuminated with festive lights.

BB Riverboats offers various cruise options, including family-friendly cruises and adult-only affairs. Enjoy a delicious dinner, hit the dance floor with live entertainment, and raise your glass to toast the approaching year. The riverboat cruise offers a memorable experience you and your loved ones will cherish for years.

4.Party the Night Away in Over-the-RhineOver-the-Rhine

Cincinnati’s vibrant and trendy neighborhood is renowned for its lively bar and restaurant scene. On New Year’s Eve in Cincinnati, this historic district transforms into a hub of celebration and merriment.

Choose from various bars, pubs, and restaurants hosting special New Year’s Eve events. From live music performances to DJ sets, plenty of entertainment keeps the party going all night long. Soak in the lively atmosphere and immerse yourself in the local culture as you welcome the New Year with a bang.

5.Experience a Family-Friendly First Midnight at Newport Aquarium

If you’re looking for a New Year’s Eve celebration that’s both educational and entertaining, the Newport Aquarium’s “First Midnight” event is the ideal choice. Located just across the river from Cincinnati, this aquatic wonderland offers a fantastic experience for families.

“First Midnight” is tailored to young children who cannot stay up until midnight. The event includes a thrilling countdown to the New Year at noon instead. Kids can participate in a memorable dance party, meet fascinating marine creatures, and engage in activities. It’s a fun and educational way to welcome the New Year with your little ones.

Tip:If you’re seeking an exclusive and intimate dining experience to mark the occasion, consider hiring aprivate chef Cincinnatihas to offer. Indulge in a delectable feast curated to your preferences and savor the culinary delights in the comfort of your home or chosen venue.


Cincinnati has a lot to offer when celebrating New Year’s Eve. Whether you prefer a family-oriented event or a lively party scene, Queen City ensures you have a memorable start to the New Year.

Remember to plan and secure your spot for these must-do activities, which are popular among locals and visitors. With these five fantastic options, you can make this New Year’s Eve in Cincinnati an exceptional and unforgettable experience for yourself and your loved ones. Cheers to new beginnings and a Happy New Year!


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