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NYE live: 5-minute fireworks show to light up Abu Dhabi

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The UAE is preparing to bid adieu to 2020 in a grand fashion. With six emirates hosting 33 fireworks shows and a host of other events for New Year’s Eve (NYE), residents and tourists are spoilt for choice.

For those of you getting ready for the celebrations, do keep all the health and safety protocols in mind: Mask up and maintain a safe social distance. For those ringing in 2021 from the comfort of your homes or in private parties, we at Khaleej Times have got you covered.

As we watch the clock tick off the hours to the final countdown, our reporters and multimedia journalists are on the ground to bring you the best of what’s happening around town live.


9.20pm

World’s longest ambulance in Dubai serves Downtown revellers

The world’s longest ambulance has been stationed in Downtown Dubai. Paramedics on board are offering emergency services to New Year’s Eve revellers who may need it. The Government of Dubai Media Office has tweeted photos of the ambulance.


9.10pm

A gravity space man, roller skate girls, and Mr Dripping ME DubME DubaiAtrium by Zaha Hadid in Business Bay, in the heart of Burj Khalifa district.


9.07pm

The Dubai Police have shared a video that shows how they are managing traffic and ensuring Covid safety measures in Downtown Dubai. Have a look:


9.06pm

Let the virtual parties begin: A woman at a restaurant in Dubai makes sure her mum gets to be part of the celebrations via video call. The elderly and people with chronic diseases have been advised to stay home to stay safe this NYE. – Photo by Neeraj Murali


9.03pm

A Cappy New Year! For Filipino residentin Dubai Jay Burce, the New Year 2021 will be different. He is all set to usher in the New Year at the Global Village with this innovative cap. Photo by Juidin Bernarrd


9pm

LIVE: 3 hours to 2021. We are in Downdown Dubai counting down to tonight’s midnight fireworks from Burj Khalifa


8:52pm

5-minute fireworks show to light up Al Ain Square

If you’re in Al Ain and still can’t decide where to watch the fireworks in a few hours, here’s the good news: A five-minute spectacle will light up the skies at Al Ain Square in the Hazza Bin Zayed Stadium area at midnight.

Those who are heading to the venue are urged to follow all safety measures, the Abu Dhabi Government Media Office tweeted. Wear your face mask at all times and participate in events only with your family, it added.

Crowds should be avoided and maintain the safe distance of two meters from others. If you are unwell, it is best to stay home.


8:36pm

Another key Dubai road closed, alternative routes announced

The Lower Financial Centre Road is now closed, the Dubai Police have tweeted. The Roads and Transport Authority has specified alternative routes that motorists can take: First Business Bay St., Al Meydan St., 2nd Za’abeel Rd., and Latifa Bint Hamdan St.

Earlier in the day, Al Asayel Street was closed.

8:25pm

Look: Dubai doctors on e-scooters around Burj Khalifa

Paramedics stationed around the Burj Khalifa are using environment-friendly electric scooters to provide emergency assistance to those who may need it.

The Government of Dubai Media Office has posted photos of the paramedics doing their job ahead of the spectacular New Year’s Eve fireworks show.

8:10pm

Live from Palm Jumeirah as the nation is awaiting the celebrations to ring in the new year


8:05pm

Final camping session of 2020: With four hours to go to ring in the New Year 2021, Dubai resident Sarath Babu and his family are all cozy in their tent on the Jumeirah Beach. They will ring in the New Year as the Burj Khalifa fireworks light up the night sky. – Photo by Shihab


8:04pm

BurjKhalifa wishes Happy NewY ear to countries where it is 2021 already


8:00pm

Dubai’s first NYE fireworks usher in 2021 in China

Dubai’s Global Village has just hosted the UAE’s first fireworks show. The display at 8pm ushered in the New Year 2021 in China. The destination will host six more fireworks until 1am on January 1 to celebrate the New Year in six time zones.


7:49pm

Another key Dubai road closed

The Lower Financial Centre Road is now closed, the Dubai Police have tweeted. Earlier in the day, Al Asayel Street was closed.


7:32pm

Hundreds of citizens and residents continue to reach the Sheikh Zayed Festival in Abu Dhabi’s Al Wathba for New Year celebrations and catch the world-record smashing fireworks show. – Photo by Ashwani Kumar


7:19pm

We are so looking forward to 2021: KHDA

Check out the Knowledge and Human Development Authority’s hilarious (and inspiring) New Year tweet


7:15pm

3 field hospitals around Burj Khalifa to keep you safe

The Dubai Health Authority (DHA) has set up three field hospitals and deployed “several” medical teams in Downtown Dubai to ensure safety during the New Year’s Eve (NYE) celebrations. Over 55 medical staff have been deployed at these field hospitals. Read about it here


7:09pm

Atlantis, The Palm testing lights preparing for KISS meanwhile inside the restaurants are starting get busy with keen residents and tourists ready to bring on 2021. – Photo: Mitchell Finlayson (Intern)


7:02pm

Burj Khalifa lights up with ‘2021’ – Photo by Neeraj Murali


7:00pm

Live from Umm Suquiem park where people have spread their picnic mats and have put up their tents to watch the fireworks withh he their loved ones at the backdrop of Burk Al Arab hotel.


6:49pm

Traffic builds up on Jumeirah Road. Photo by Shihab/KT


6:48pm

5 hours to go; 33 UAE spots set for fireworks

Did you know that fireworks will light up UAE skies from 33 locations across six emirates? Read about it here.


6:45pm

5 hours to go for 2021: A family is all set for the NYE Burj Al Arab fireworks show that will end 2020 and usher in the new year 2021. – Photo: Shihab


6:40pm

Pakistani expat excited to mark first NYE in Dubai

Pakistani national Azba Juzer is excited about marking her first New Year in Dubai.

Gazing at the iconic Burj Al Arab, an excited Azba said: “This is probably the best time of the year for us as the weather is perfect. We feel lucky to be in the UAE … as we are able to move around freely.

“I am looking forward to the fireworks that take place here near the Burj Al Arab, as I’ve heard it is one of the best in the city.”

Reporting: Saman; Photo: Shihab


6:30pm

Khaleej Times journalists are at Al Seef as we build up to the New Year’s Eve Gala in Downtown Dubai with Burj Khalifa fireworks at midnight.


6:10pm

Historic Dubai district all set for 3-min fireworks show

As the sun set over us for the final time in 2020, here we are at Al Seef in old Dubai, a place so steeped in history.

Dubai’s popular waterfront promenade, will host a three-minute dazzling fireworks display, at midnight, to delight New Year’s Eve revelers.

– James Jose


6:05pm

NYE vibes at The Pointe, Palm Jumeirah


6:00pm

Live from beach next to Burj Al Arab where crowd is building up to watch the spectacular fireworks


5:30pm

New year 2021: UAE’s last sunset of the decade

As the UAE gets ready to host spectacular fireworks and events to ring in the new year 2021, an orange glow has taken over the skies. The country has just witnessed its last sunset of the year 2020 and the decade. Have a look:


5:30pm

It’s half past five, lovely weather and with the sun about to set, the crowd is building up. People are carrying chairs, water bottles, jackets, snacks, tea and stuff to enjoy a wonderful evening in the picturesque Global Village.


5:24pm

750-strong team all set to clean up the city

The Dubai Municipality has set up a special team to clean the emirate up after New Year’s Eve (NYE) celebrations. About 500 cleaners and 250 volunteers will be stationed across the city.


5:22pm

Abu Dhabi set for 35-minute fireworks show

Residents and flocking to the Sheikh Zayed Festival in Abu Dhabi’s Al Wathba. Those who haven’t booked the Dh5 entry ticket can buy one on the site. Multiple layers of security checks are in place to ensure Covid safety measures.

Apart from the highlight – a 35-minute record-breaking fireworks display – there are several other activities, including pavilions of different countries, fountain shows, activities for children, exhibitions highlighting the UAE culture and heritage, and more. –

– Ashwani Kumar


5:19pm

No place like Dubai: Youngsters Rehan, Fatima, Dua and Subhan – aged 12, 10, 9 and 5 respectively – strike a masked pose – with some equally cute bears to boot! Hailing from Lahore, Pakistan, the kids are in town to ring in the New Year along with their parents. Photo by Juidin Bernarrd/KT


5:14pm

Burj Khalifa Metro Station is now closed

The Burj Khalifa/Dubai Mall Metro Station has been closed. “Please use the Financial Centre and Business Bay Metro Stations to reach Burj Khalifa area,” the RTA tweeted.

The station will remain closed till 6am on Friday, January 1, 2021.

The Metro will run non-stop till 1am on January 2.


5:08pm

NYEwithKT: Khaleej Times journalists are in Downdown Dubai counting down to tonight’s midnight fireworks from Burj Khalifa

5:05pm

One for the ‘gram: Make sure to reserve your spot on this celebration street. With golden arches that will light up after sunset, it’s definitely one of the most instagrammable locations at the village – aka the place to be. – Photo by Juidin Bernarrd/KT


5:00pm

Taste of the world: A new street food dining concept showcasing delectable treats from around the world has been introduced at Global Village this year. There’s no need to ring in the New Year on an empty stomach! – Photo by Juidin Bernarrd/KT


4:45pm

About 3 hours to go for first Global Village fireworks

Dubai’s Global Village opened its doors at 4pm. Residents were seen queuing up outside the venue well before that. And they have good reason to, for the destination will host seven fireworks shows to ring in the New Year in seven time zones. The first show will light up the Dubai skies at 8pm.

Kids and families are excited to spend their New Year’s Eve here at the Global Village.

The weather is lovely and breezy. If you are still wondering what to do, this is the place to be!

– Suneeti Kohli Ahuja, Photos by Juidin Bernarrd


4:38pm

The future is bright: Nine-year-old Jasmine El Founti flies a kite at Jumeirah Beach as the sun sets on Dubai on New Year’s Eve. The youngster and her parents are waiting in eager anticipation of the fireworks display that will soon light up the night skies. Photo by Shihab


4:35pm

A socially distanced selfie: Kids at Global Village are all masked up as they click a selfie. UAE residents, take note, that’s how you should usher in the New Year 2021 safely. Photo by Juidin Bernarrd/KT

4:26pm

That’s one way to beat NYE traffic: Dubai residents Liya and Xavier will cycle their way from Jumeirah to watch the New Year’s Eve fireworks. – Photo by Shihab


4:20pm

Keep kids safe: Dubai Police

The Dubai Police have issued an advisory, reminding residents to keep their children safe during the New Year celebrations. “A night filled with joy and excitement, particularly for children,” they tweeted. “Make sure to keep your children safe in public and crowded places.”

4:17pm

Less than 8 hours to go for Burj Khalifa fireworks

Burj Khalifa will shine with its New Year’s Eve fireworks and laser show in less than eight hours.


4:00pm

Key Dubai road closed, alternative routes announced

Al Asayel Road leading to the Burj Khalifa is now closed, the police have announced. It will now be used as a lane for buses and emergency vehicles.

The RTA has listed alternative roads that motorists can use: Al Khail Rd., Sheikh Mohammed Bin Zayed Rd., Al Wasl St., Jumeirah Rd and Sheikh Zayed Rd.

Check out the timings of other road closures:

3:58pm

Dubai Frame all set for grand fireworks show

The Dubai Municipality has tweeted a video showing the final preparations at the Dubai Frame that is all set to host a spectacular New Year’s Eve fireworks show.

3:55pm

A resident books a spot for his family at a vantage point on Jumeirah beach to catch the Burj Al Arab fireworks. – Photo by Shihab

3:50pm

Traffic builds up on key Abu Dhabi streets

Abu Dhabi residents are seen making a dash to their homes – a familiar scene on a Thursday evening – but today the occasion is different: It’s the New Year’s Eve.

Both the high-capacity arterial roads – Sultan bin Zayed the First Street (Muroor Road) and Sheikh Rashid bin Saeed Street (Old Airport Road) – are getting busier.

The main action in Abu Dhabi City is expected on the Corniche stretch. By 5pm, people will be grabbing the best spots on the beaches and parks to catch the last sunset of the year and fireworks show to welcome 2021.

By Ashwani Kumar


3:29pm

Have at least Dh15 balance in your Nol card

The Roads and Transport Authority has advised revellers to keep their wallets at home and instead carry their Nol cards “to travel easily across #Dubai and reach the celebration venue”. “We advise you to keep a nol card balance of at least AED 15,” the authority tweeted.


3.15pm

An apt reminder for revellers to maintain a safe social distance in Downtown Dubai. – Photo: Rahul Gajjar


2.59pm

Traffic jam on MBZ Road towards Sharjah

Excitement is building up as we are nearing the end of this unusual year 2020, and we can see it on the roads. Office-goers are seemingly rushing home to be in time to celebrate or just be with their loved ones as we ring in the new year.

The stretch on the Sheikh Mohamed bin Zayed Road from near International City intersection towards Mirdiff Mall and Sharjah is getting busy. There is heavy flow of cars and other vehicles.

The traffic in the opposite direction on the Sheikh Mohamed bin Zayed Road towards Global Village is fairly smooth as of now. Around 500 cars already outside in the parking lot of Global Village waiting for tonight’s show.

Global Village will open its doors at 4pm and will be putting up a spectacular show of fireworks that coincides with the time zones of seven countries, starting with China at 8pm; followed by Thailand at 9pm; Bangladesh at 10pm; India at 10.30pm; Pakistan at 11pm; UAE at 12 midnight; and the final show at 1am when Moscow, Russia, rings in the new year.

– Suneeti Ahuja-Kohli and Mitchell Finlayson/KT Intern


2.59pm

Key Dubai roads to be shut soon

Remember, roads leading to the Burj Khalifa will be shut in an hour. Here are the road closure timings:


2.30pm

Dubai Metro advisory issued

Dubai’s Roads and Transport Authority (RTA) is expecting Metro stations and cabins to be crowded with revellers. The authority has issued an advisory, asking commuters to adhere to all Covid safety precautions so that they can ring in the new year safely.


2.25pm

Mask up at all times: Dubai Police

The Dubai Police have reminded residents to commit to all safety precautions.


2.15pm

Dubai authorities will keep you safe

The Dubai Police have tweeted a video that shows the measures put in place in Downtown Dubai to keep revellers safe.

Arrive early, revellers told

The Dubai Police have reminded residents to arrive at their celebration venues early on.