For the 34th year, London’s New Year’s Day Parade takes to the streets of central London on 1st January 2020. Over 8,500 performers take part in this great celebration of diversity, creativity and inspiration. Not to be missed if you are in London for New Year’s Day!

What is the London New Year’s Day Parade?

There really is no better place to welcome in the New Year than London. However, this was not always the case. On January 1st 1986, the founders Bob and Geri Bone took their family for a day out in London, only to find that everything in the city was shut. The streets were empty and everywhere was closed. They decided to do something about it and met with the Lord Mayor of Westminster and this is how the parade was born. It became one of the World’s greatest street entertainments and was initially known as the Lord Mayor of Westminster’s Big Parade.

What to expect for London New Year's Day Parade 2020

With so many entertainers scheduled to perform, you’re in for a treat if you attend the LNYDP. There will be Pearly Kings and Queens, cheerleaders, marching bands, dancers and representatives from West End show. A number of bands from the USA also take part in the parade so you will not be disappointed by the extravaganza of musicians, dancers, acrobats and more.

Do not miss the ‘Let’s Help London Challenge’ which involves all 32 boroughs competing for a shared prize pot to donated to local charities. In this key part of the parade, each borough presents an act, float or another form of entertainment. The acts are then judged by an international jury of foreign ambassadors and high commissioners.

You can find out more about this year's different performers here.

Tips to enjoy the New Year's Day Parade in London

The parade will start at 12pm on Piccadilly so make sure you arrive early to secure a good spot, especially if you are with small children. Or, you can buy a ticket for one of the three grandstands to secure a good view.

If you want to listen to the live musical entertainment, we'd recommend choosing a viewing spot away from the Cenotaph. Indeed, this is because the bands are asked to march silently as they pass the war memorial on Whitehall.

To know who’s performing and the performance times, make sure to get a copy of the Parade Post on the day. They are available for free from the commentary posts or charity workers and donations are greatly appreciated.

The parade route

Catch all the festivities along the 2-mile parade route which navigates past the following landmarks:

  • Piccadilly
  • Piccadilly Circus
  • Lower Regent Street
  • Waterloo Place
  • Pall Mall
  • Cockspur Street
  • Trafalgar Square
  • Whitehall
  • Parliament Street

 

London New Year's Day Parade map

London New Year’s Day Parade Fan Zone

Do you want to take a break and recharge to enjoy the parade to its fullest? Head to the Fan Zone where you can find the Street Food Village, big screens and merchandise stalls. The Fan Zone will be located in Waterloo Place, which is only a few minutes’ walk away from Pall Mall.

The Original Tour and New Year’s Day Parade

We are very excited to be taking part in the New Year Day’s Parade once again. We will be cruising through the streets of Westminster for the second year in a row on January 1st. Two of our famous Union Jack double-deckers will pass by over 500,000 spectators carrying a host of London Borough Mayors. They will have a view of London like no other!

 

Due to this major event taking place in Central London, unfortunately a few of our bus stops will be closed. Our regular hop-on hop-off service will be running throughout the day with some diversions taking place along our Yellow and Blue route.

The following bus stops will not be served on January 1st:

#33 Parliament Street, outside HM Treasury, stop C

#34 Whitehall, Horse Guards Parade

#35 Cockspur Street, Trafalgar Square, stop S

#36 Piccadilly, Piccadilly Arcade, stop G 

The following bus stops are likely to face disruption:

#5 Coventry Street, in front of Shake Shack

#6 Pall Mall East, left of National Portrait Gallery entrance, stop Z

#17 Westminster Bridge (Big Ben side), in front of Westminster Pier

#37 Piccadilly, Green Park station, in front of Santander bikes