Where to Welcome 2016 Based on Your Personality

  • music goa
    Entertainers can enjoy music festivals and dance parties on New Year’s Eve in Goa, India.
Tanja has wonderful suggestions to spend the New Year’s Eve as one’s personality demands:

It’s the peak season and I get so many requests from clients asking things like “I’m a noise-averse person, so where should I go,” or “I don’t like surprises. Can you please offer me a very organized tour” and so on. Well, it seems that personality plays a huge role in how travelers choose their destinations, even more than budget or accommodation. Most people are perplexed when it comes to choosing a place to celebrate the end of the year. Therefore, I’ve compiled this list of places to be on New Year’s Eve 2015 that best suit your personality. Read ahead:


It’s an understatement to say that you like the peace and quiet. You rarely go out, and if you actually do, you make sure the destination is truly worth it. You can’t stand tourist crowds, and you prefer to stay indoors at a hotel room hooked to your laptop. You probably don’t mind some luxury on your holidays, either.  Then these destinations just might be for you:

Song Saa Private Island, Cambodia

What could be a better way to escape the crowds than to literally retreat to a tropical island in the middle of nowhere? Song Saa (which beautifully means “sweethearts” in Khmer) is a pair of privately owned islands in the Koh Rong island chain. It’s hard to find world-class accommodation in still developing Cambodia, and Song Saa is one of the few exceptions.  The rooms are chic villas situated over the azure water. There’s a big emphasis on style and being environmentally-friendly. The cherry on top of this cake is the relative isolation Song Saa enjoys. There are no tourist crowds here hogging the creamy white beach. Dinners can be arranged in private. You can swim, sunbathe and try a watersport without having to worry about other people. New Year’s celebrations are kept low-key and quiet, unlike the raucous revelry in nearby Thailand. What more could an introvert ask for on a holiday?

bedroom villa

Overwater villa room at Song Saa.

Kalpitiya, Sri Lanka

If a private island retreat is too expensive, then visit Kalpitiya, a sleepy fishing village in Sri Lanka with long stretches of captivating golden beaches. Many tourists do come to Kalpitiya, but mostly only to go on early morning dolphin-watching tours. Rest of the time, Kalpitiya’s baby-powder-fine sand is free of bodies, except for the occasional fisherman dragging his catch ashore. Palm-fringed Alankuda is an excellent beach with good accommodation to relax at and be left alone.  Because the area has yet to be discovered as a beach destination, you won’t find any nagging vendors or curious other tourists trying to chat you up. It’s essentially the perfect combination of sun, beach and tranquility.

kalpitiya boat and sunset

Enamoring sunset at Kalpitiya, Sri Lanka.


Pop psychology calls you extremely friendly and outgoing. So your ideal New Year’s vacation means meeting a lot of people and discovering new destinations. There will preferably be big beach parties included where you can meet new people. If this is you, then these destinations are for you:


This legendary destination is the best place to enjoy balmy tropical weather along with more beach parties than you could count. Beaches like Kuta attract crowds like pins to a magnet for New Year’s Eve merry-making with loud fireworks. Get ready to down cocktails and dance until 6 a.m. in beach bars around Seminyak, Kuta and Legian. Prime New Year’s Eve party clubs include Potato Head Beach Club, Mozaic Beach Club, Double-Six Rooftop and W Lounge. Head over to the Puputan Badung Square for a New Year’s Eve carnival and a colorful parade. All in all, say goodbye to 2015 with a bang in Bali.

kuta beach lombok indonesia

Party-ready beach at Kuta, Bali.

Hikkaduwa, Sri Lanka

Bali can be super expensive and congested during the peak tourist season that can put off some extroverts. In this case, try Hikkaduwa on Sri Lanka’s west coast. Hikkaduwa is a well-established beach town with great hotels and coconut-tree-lined golden beaches. It’s also quite renowned for diving and snorkeling thanks to amazing coral reefs. It’s a popular place in December, but not as crowded as in places like Bali. Hikkaduwa has many wild beach parties and amazing celebratory dinners offered by hotels on New Year’s Eve for extroverts to enjoy.

You can also try Unawatuna and Bentota (for luxury lovers) for great New Year’s Eve beach parties offered by hotels and bars in the area. Bentota is actually one of my favorite beaches. One time, I celebrated a New Year’s Eve here with some friends dancing, drinking and releasing sky lanterns into the star-studded sky. Good memories.

chaaya tranz hikkaduwa

Hikkaduwa, a hip beach town in Sri Lanka.


You are always on the lookout to experience new things and discover the world. You hate being holed up for the holidays, and instead want to stretch your legs somewhere exotic. Sitting in a sun chair doing nothing is not for you. If so, consider these destinations:


You can definitely welcome the New Year with a blast in the paradise islands of Maldives. Retreat to a resort island with white-sand beaches this December, but don’t worry, you won’t be bored. Maldives has an incredible underwater world that everyone must discover at least once. Go wreck diving and snorkel among corals to discover beauty beyond belief. I’ve been to the Maldives several times and I can assure you, the underwater world will leave you breathless. Go night diving to see fluorescent algae, and end the year trying an utterly thrilling watersport like parasailing, wake boarding or water skiing. The amazing resorts offer incredible gala dinners to welcome the New Year, so that’s a plus too.

waterskiing maldives

Water skiing adventure at Maldives.


If you’d rather be wandering through the wilderness on your New Year’s vacation, then head to Malaysia. Go to the stunning Taman Negara National Park to hike or trek through thick tropical rainforest, climb hills, explore sacred caves, swim at silky-smooth waterfalls and cross the world’s longest canopy bridge. Enjoy a truly unique New Year’s holiday by going to see wild orangutans in Bukit Merah. You can welcome 2016 at the verdant Cameron Highlands with vast tea estates to explore.

canopy bridge

Crossing the world’s longest canopy bridge.


You are an idealist who loves helping people. When you travel to a place, you notice the people first. You care about them, you want to get to know them, and if possible, help them. If you are an “advocate” searching for a vacation with meaning, this just might be for you:


Cambodia is a beautiful destination, no doubt about that. Still, beyond the magnificent temples, calm tropical beaches and charming cities are people who’ve suffered and survived through genocide, carpet bombings and excruciating poverty. That’s exactly why Cambodia can be the New Year’s destination for tourists with a cause. You can enjoy the captivating beaches, tour the amazing temples of Angkor Wat, try street food sold by smiling vendors, and also help out Cambodia’s people in the process. Tourism itself helps by proving locals with means of employment. Visit the Genocide Museum and the memorial at the capital Phnom Penh to learn about the country’s dark past. Contribute your part by letting others know about responsible tourism. Afterwards, you can meaningfully bid farewell to 2015 on a floating tent in scenic Tatai.

Bayon castle cambodia

Bayon temple at Angkor Wat.


You are a party animal who loves dancing and music. You have endless energy to burn and plenty of time to seek exciting things. There’s only one way you want to spend the New Year’s—with an unforgettable and cacophonous bash. Here are the destinations for you:

Bangkok, Thailand

If there’s a place that knows how to party on New Year’s, then it’s Bangkok. You can have the time of your life in Bangkok’s many New Year’s Eve parties. There are high-end parties, budget parties with cheap beer and local street-side parties to revel at. The options are seemingly endless—countdown party on the street at Centralworld, Thailand’s Times Square, riverside fireworks at Asiatique, on a river cruise with a celebratory dinner or at a swanky rooftop bar like the famous Sky Bar blasting dance-pop. You’ll get all the excitement of being at an exotic locale without missing the cosmopolitan fun.

bangkok night

Bangkok skyline.

Goa, India

India’s most famous beach town has been a popular destination to spend the New Year’s Eve since the 60s. However, unlike in Bangkok, the drinking is now regulated. That doesn’t mean all the fun is gone. Replacing the alcohol is the subcontinent’s two biggest music festivals, Vh1 Supersonic and Sunburn, which will be held on Goa’s white-gold beaches on New Year’s Eve so you can dance your way into 2016. Outside the two festivals, there are dozens of classy bars offering less-crowded parties with top DJs. You can party right on the golden beach at Anjuna and Palolem, if you like (which of course, you do).

music goa

Music festival in Goa.

Does my list cover your personality? If not, let me know in the comments section below.