Widely considered one of the most impressive New Year's Eve fireworks displays in the world, Sydney's annual Harbour Bridge fireworks extravaganza is one that needs to be seen to be believed. This year however, the event – which traditionally attracts more than a million spectators, including international tourists – is taking a different approach. So, where and how can you watch the Sydney NYE fireworks in 2020? All the details on the COVID-safe event, below.
Are the Sydney NYE fireworks still going ahead?
This year's Sydney NYE celebrations are certainly still going ahead; but not without necessary COVID-safe measures in place. In September, New South Wales premier Gladys Berejiklian, announced that the symbolic display would be much more "toned down" than other years, with the cancellation of the usual family-friendly 9pm fireworks, and a shortened display still taking place at midnight.
“I do feel it’s important for the state, and the nation because it’s really a national symbol that’s beamed around the world ... it’s almost our contribution to the world,” Berejiklian said.
Unlike previous year's where spectator's have been able to congregate in Sydney harbour and its surrounds in anticipation of the pyrotechnic spectacular, access to the CBD will be extremely limited, with the 2020 Sydney NYE fireworks becoming an entirely ticketed event. A designated Green Zone will be established for Circular Quay and at key public vantage points in North Sydney, meaning that only residents who live inside the zone, their guests, and those with confirmed bookings at venues such as restaurants, hotels or bars within the area will be allowed in.
Those who have access to these areas will be required to download a New Year's Eve pass from Services NSW, which will be checked upon entry.
Frontline workers and firefighters will have access to the city's best views for the 2020 Sydney NYE fireworks
This NYE's, Sydney's best firework viewing spots, at Mrs Macquarie's Point, the Opera House, and Campbell's Cove will be reserved for frontline workers and firefighters as a thank you for their service throughout the horrific bushfire season and pandemic. The NSW government is implementing a ballot process to award spots to a limited number of spots to view the fireworks from. More information on this process can be found on the NSW government's website.
“2020 has been a tough year for everyone,” Berejiklian continued.
"New Year’s Eve celebrations will be a symbol of hope and optimism for next year. It is also an opportunity to thank people across NSW who have stepped up during this difficult time."
Where will the 2020 Sydney NYE fireworks be broadcasted?
This year's fireworks display will be broadcasted on ABC, with the recommendation that Sydney-siders remain at home to enjoy the celebrations if possible. If you do plan on hosting a NYE gathering at home, COVID-safe capacity measures still remain firmly in place. From December 1, the number of visitors allowed in a residence will increase from 20 to 50 people – as long as an outdoor space is being used. If your home does not have the capacity to host outdoors, the NSW government is recommending that you keep all gathering's to a maximum of 30 people.
Gathering's hosted in public spaces will also increase from 30 to 50, permitting that social distancing precautions are still upheld.
For further information on the night, head to the NSW government's website.