Eine Gruppe junger Menschen in Abendkleidung tanzt und feiert zusammen. Von oben rieselt buntes Konfetti.
A little partying never killed nobody: New Year's Eve is the perfect opportunity for some glitz and glamour in Cologne. Photo: Getty Images

New Year’s Eve 2023 in Cologne: nine last-minute ideas for the big countdown

Nothing planned for New Year's Eve but now you do want to celebrate after all? Here come our last-minute recommendations for NYE 2023 in Cologne.

It’s a pain when the party mood grabs you at short notice and there are no tickets to be had. Luckily, however, some pubs and bars are open for everyone as normal. We’ve put together nine last-minute recommendations to put a smug smile on your face as you see in the New Year in Cologne. After all, 2023 deserves a decent send-off – and the bar’s a good place to bid farewell to the old year. Whether you’re looking for cocktails or mocktails, hearty or hip, noisy or cosy, we’ve got something for everyone. Cheers!

1. The Grid Bar: high-end drinks 

The Grid Bar delights taste buds and eyes alike. Once you’ve rung the bell to be let in, a speakeasy bar boasting a stylish and luxurious interior opens before you. There are award-winning, creative cocktails and cigars to enjoy in the lounge. On New Year’s Eve, you can drop in from 11 pm – there’s a dinner event before.

2. Scheinbar: flirting into the new year, surrounded by velvet  

Fancy a flirt on New Year’s Eve? Then give Scheinbar a go. It’s not much to look at from the outside, but the inside welcomes visitors with red velvet, 70s decor and dimmed lighting. A cosy place with a friendly clientele. The music is old school – often vinyl – and as the night moves on, the dancing starts. And the flirting, of course.

3. Stereo Wonderland: indie rock you can dance to

Cologne’s Stereo Wonderland will also be opening its graffiti-embellished doors for New Year’s Eve 2023. This quaint little bar serves up cool drinks and their famous Mexikaner shots to the beat of indie rock and similar genres. You can dance here too but it can get quite full so be prepared to have your space cramped – though not your style.

4. E.D.P.: pub games and fine draught beer 

Pinball, table football, darts and a whopping portion of punk rock – that’s E.D.P. This quintessential corner pub has a lot of regulars so it’s easy to find someone to chat to. With beer and Guiness on tap, plus schnaps and other drinks on the menu, the whole thing makes for a pleasantly tipsy start to the new year!

5. Frieda Bar: guitar grooves galore for New Year’s Eve 2023 in Cologne

It’s bottoms up on New Year’s Eve at Frieda Bar too. Indulge in a few drinks, surrounded by baroque, Belgian wallpaper as you bid a stylish farewell to the old year against a musical backdrop featuring punk, rock and metal.

6. ZwoEinz: getting down in the basement

ZwoEinz has enjoyed cult status for many years and now has new owners (the same people who own Stereo Wonderland). They’re planning a fantastic New Year’s Eve 2023 party as part of the Schere Stein Papier club nights. The low-lit basement bar, which features a small dancefloor, will welcome revellers looking to see in the new year with a musical accompaniment worthy of the occasion.

7. Torburg: a bluesy, boozy end to 2023

Torburg is the number one venue for blues concerts in Cologne. It’s a good old-fashioned pub, run by husband-and-wife team Hülya and Martin. The music here is blues, jazz, soul and rock and their mission for the past more than 20 years has been to guarantee good live music. But there’s always a buzz here even when there aren’t any gigs – so you can be sure of an NYE party that provides a fitting end to the year.

8. Grünfeld: a no-frills New Year’s Eve party in Cologne 

The “hottest Belgian Quarter bar that’s not part of the hip crowd”, as Grünfeld describes itself, has an unpretentious vibe, bright lights and buckets of Gaffel kölsch. You’ll usually find people playing chess here (it’s named after Grandmaster Ernst Grünfeld) but not so much on New Year’s Eve. Then the only moves they make are to the bar!

9. The Copper Pot: the luck of the Irish for the new year

Last but not least – why not see in the new year at The Copper Pot? This welcoming Irish pub is well-known for its international clientele as well as its whiskey, cider and Guiness. As you’d expect, there’s live music on New Year’s Eve too. The mood here is always great. What more do you need for a fabulous start to the new year?

That’s New Year’s Eve 2023 in Cologne sorted then. If you’re looking for ideas for the day after, click here. Happy New Year!

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