A full 16 hours ahead of New York, and 19 hours ahead of Los Angeles, Sydneysiders have already clinked their champagne glasses, sang Auld Lang Syne, and are well on the way to breaking their New Year’s resolutions.
And as the first to bring in the New Year every year, Sydney makes sure their fireworks are heard across the world. Officials estimate that 1.5 million people turned out for the festivities, which were optimistically themed “Make Your Mark,” and featured a giant X on the Sydney Harbour Bridge. The spectacular show featured a 12-minute finale in a rainbow of colors, reportedly costing AU$5 million (slightly more than US$5 million).
(More on TIME.com: See Joel Stein’s predictions for 2011.)
But it wasn’t all glitz and glamour. The crowds faced extreme weather while they waited for the turn of the year. Temperatures were predicted to reach 40 degrees Celsius – that’s more than 100 degrees Fahrenheit! It’s quite the opposite in New York, as crews finish digging out Times Square from last weekend’s blizzard. (via ABC News Australia)