Samoa used to be among the last countries to see the new year, was one of the first to welcome the year of 2015, after jumping the International Date Line three years ago.
Millions of people around the world are continuing to gather to welcome 2015 with fireworks and celebrations across major cities. Thanks to Buzzfeed for compiling images Of New Year’s Eve Celebrations Around The Globe.
People take a dip in the sea during the fireworks for the new year on Copacabana beach in Rio de Janeiro. © AFP: Christophe Simon
The display used more than 10,000 aerial fireworks, 25,000 shooting comets, and 100,000 pyrotechnic effects.
People released balloons outside the Tokyo Tower to ring in 2015.
In South Korea, people gathered at Imjingak peace park near the Demilitarized Zone dividing the country from North Korea.
In Malaysia, colorful explosions lit up the sky near the Petronas Twin Towers in Kuala Lumpur.
Singapore, fireworks started from a floating installation in Marina Bay.
In the Philippines, Manila was the scene of a large fireworks display.
Filipinos also watched a laser show on buildings in downtown Manila.
At the Vatican, Pope Francis arrived for the New Year’s Eve vespers Mass in St. Peter’s Basilica.
The traditional Dec. 31 Mass contains the thanksgiving hymn “Te Deum” to end the year.
In North Korea, a fireworks display ushered in 2015 in Pyongyang’s Kim Il Sung Square, named after the country’s former leader.
Schoolchildren also performed in a concert in the capital’s Central Youth Hall.
The performance was entitled “We Are The Happiest in the World.”
In the Chinese city of Harbin, people released sky lanterns to herald the new year.
Elsewhere in China, the National Stadium in Beijing was lit up with the words “Year 2015.”
People went ice-skating outside the stadium, known as the Bird’s Nest, to mark Beijing’s bid to host the 2022 Winter Olympics.
Meanwhile in Shanghai, lights and lasers illuminated buildings as part of a countdown celebration.
In India, school teachers arranged a floral display in the western city of Ahmedabad in the final hours of 2014.
Students then spelled out a welcoming message.
In Russia, fireworks illuminated the frigid sky over St. Basil’s Cathedral and Kremlin’s Spasskaya Tower in Moscow.
The tower was covered by scaffolding during celebrations of New Year’s Day in Red Square.
Saint Basil’s Cathedral.
The Kremlin’s Spasskaya (Saviour) Tower, covered by scaffolding.
The city of Baku in Azerbaijan served as the stage for the nation’s fireworks show.
And in Edinburgh, Scotland, thousands of revelers gathered along Princes Street to sing and dance.
Fireworks explode over Edinburgh castle during the Hogmanay street party celebrations.
Fireworks also exploded over the ancient Parthenon temple at the Acropolis in Athens.
New Year’s Eve celebrations kicked off in Athens despite rainfall.
In Indonesia, fireworks brightened the sky above the Hill Gundaling in North Sumatra.
Hill Gundaling, Karo District, North Sumatra, Indonesia.
Fireworks erupted in dramatic fashion behind the quadriga of the landmark Brandenburg Gate in Berlin, Germany.
The Quadriga statue on top of the Brandenburg Gate shortly after midnight in Berlin.
Thousands of people, meanwhile, packed Sol Square to celebrate the new year in Madrid, Spain.
While in Beirut, Lebanon, people set off balloons to mark the start of 2015.
In England, fireworks engulfed the iconic London Eye.
The sky lights up over the London Eye in central London.
Fireworks explode behind the Houses of Parliament and Big Ben on the River Thames in London.
And in France, the Arc de Triomphe served as the fireworks backdrop for hundreds of revelers.
In Skopje, Macedonia, fireworks exploded over the Archaeological Museum
Hundreds also gathered at Castle Square in Warsaw, Poland, to celebrate the new year.
In Sarajevo, some watched the fireworks from a distance.
In Nigeria, crowds gathered to watch fireworks at the beach in the city of Lagos.
And of course, the revelers were ready to ring in the new year with parties in Brazil.
A wave crashes on two girls hugging as they usher in the new year as fireworks explode over Copacabana beach in Rio de Janeiro.
Copacabana beach in Rio de Janeiro.
People watch fireworks exploding near the Pavao Pavaozinho slum in Rio de Janeiro.
Revelers in Cape Town, South Africa, set off their own fireworks.
A man hangs from a pole in a main party zone in Cape Town.
In New York City, people waited for 2015 at Times Square and to watch the ball drop..
Balloons are released as revelers take part in the New Year’s Eve festivities.
The moon is pictured above the ball in Times Square on New Year’s Eve.
Meanwhile, the loss of AirAsia Flight QZ8501 and a deadly landslide in Central Java are the latest tragedies that have terminated celebration plans in the Indonesian capital Jakarta. City Gov. Basuki Tjahaja Purnama told The Jakarta Post newspaper that the city would conduct prayers for the victims of the tragedies as well as host the annual Jakarta Night Festival.
The world rings in 2015 with fireworks and party favors.