Crowds erupted in cheering and applause as the countdown to 2017 came to a crescendo at 3pm GMT in Tokyo, Japan today.
The metropolitan city became the latest to meet 2017 in a day of spectacularly colourful celebrations across the globe.
Fireworks over Tokyo city today were preceded by religious rites at the Meiji Shrine where priests prayed for good luck in 2017.
Europeans looking forward to tonight’s celebrations are also on the alert for potential terror threats among gathering crowds.
The New Year burst into colour as incredible fireworks leapt over Sydney Opera House at 1pm GMT.
The annual “Family fireworks” in Sydney, attended by around 1.5 million people, drew amazement from excited crowds earlier in the evening.
The display – at around 9pm (local time) – is slightly earlier than midnight to allow parents to take their children to bed.
Australians visiting Scotland for Hogmanay celebrated alongside their countrymen back in Oz, chanting ”Ozzie, ozzie, ozzie, oi, oi, oi” from Edinburgh’s famous Oz Bar at 1pm GMT.
Viewers clambered into around 2000 boats to get the best view of the fireworks from the water.
Amid the display, Sydney Harbour Bridge turned purple in memory of singer Prince.
Shortly after, New Zealand sparked off the start of 2017 with its fabulous fireworks display at Sky Tower – a show that was the culmination of six months’ planning.
Getty / AFP
Not all went smoothly, however, as a firefighters rushed to put fire throwing plumes of smoke into the air at Four Seasons hotel in Circular Quay, Sydney.
But fire troubles were quickly put to rest as fire services brought the situation under control.
Other musical greats who have died this year are being honoured, as fireworks shaped like Saturn, stars and the moon honoured David Bowie.
Celebrations of the lives of global music superstars who passed away this year are expected at tonight’s fireworks display at the London Eye on the banks of the Thames, where more than 110,000 spectators are expected to gather in the run-up to midnight.
Ice skating is available at Somerset House for £7.50 in Central London for those looking for something a bit different for New Year’s celebrations.
The annual New Year’s Eve Winter Carnival in Newcastle Upon Tyne will delight families – especially as it’s free – beginning in Northumberland Street.
Midnight fireworks can be seen blasting off from Baltic Square in Newcastle Gateshead, and further delights in Performance Square outside Sage Gateshead.
Spectators should be careful to check local road closures as many town centres will be blocking cars from accessing areas of town between 11.30 and 00.30 to keep crowds safe.
Pacific Islands Kiribati and Samoa were among the first in the world to welcome the start of 2017.
The hour will strike midnight at the following times in GMT:
3pm – Japan, South Korea, Indonesia
4.30pm – India and Sri Lanka
10pm – Greece, Syria, South Africa
11pm – Germany, France, Italy, Tunisia
The last people in the world to greet 2017 will be in American Samoa at 11am GMT on January 1.
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