Thousands of eager revellers have flocked to key vantage points on Sydney Harbour to nab prime position for the city’s world-famous New Year’s Eve celebrations.
Competition to secure a good spot for the highly anticipated firework display has proved fierce, with thousands of excited partygoers pitching camping chairs, picnic blankets and tents since early on Saturday morning.
Despite temperatures soaring to 27 degrees by midday in Sydney and the threat of thunderstorms later tonight, it has done little to deter the crowds.
Many of the one million people expected to descend on the foreshore to help ring in 2017 have been camping out for days to catch a glimpse of the firework display.
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Hundreds of thousands of revellers have flocked to Sydney Harbour to bring in the New Year in style with the annual fireworks display
Partygoers crammed into prime locations around Sydney Harbour long before midnight
More than one million people are expected to attend the Sydney New Year’s Eve event
Thousands of revellers have donned blue 2017 crowns available at popular vantage points
While spots around the Harbour were hard to come by, this group found the perfect vantage point on the water
These friends scored this prime position overlooking both the Sydney Harbour Bridge and the Opera House
Bringing an end to 2016 was cause for celebration for this excited group on Sydney Harbour
These lucky revellers didn’t have to contend with the crowds on land, taking a perfect vantage point on this boat on the harbour
This trio of friends donned colourful headwear to get in the festive spirit on New Year’s Eve
Many of them had not only set up camp on Saturday morning, but Friday night.
One man who came all the way from Mexico told the Nine Network he and his wife had secured a position on Friday night and slept in their tent to ensure it was safe.
Another woman said she and her friends also arrived on Friday night to ensure they bagged a prime position to watch the Harbour of Light Parade – a score of illuminated vessels gliding across the water.
‘And the fireworks,’ she added.
Organisers of Sydney’s New Year’s Eve celebrations have promised this year’s firework display will be bigger and better than ever before.
The 120 tonne fireworks display – costing more than $1 million – is inspired by music and film greats David Bowie, Prince and Gene Wilder, who all died in 2016.
McMahons point directly opposite the Sydney Harbour Bridge was packed full of revellers
This woman appeared excited as she waited for the fireworks display which organisers have promised will be the biggest ever
This person chose to shelter from the scorching sun underneath a bollard in Circular Quay
Circular Quay and the Sydney Opera House were packed to the brim with revellers by early afternoon on Saturday
A panoramic image shows the large crowd and numerous tents gathered at McMahons point
More than 2000 plain clothes and uniformed police officers will patrol the harbour all night
Mrs Macquarie’s Point is proving a hotspot for tourists with its prime position on the harbour
These two girls began celebrating early on Saturday afternoon on Sydney’s foreshore
This woman decided to capture the incredible crowds around the harbour with a selfie-stick
‘Fifteen hours to go to Sydney’s New Year’s Eve fireworks and the best spots are taken. Milsons Point is chocas!’ Mark Beretta wrote alongside his photo posted to Instagram
The base of the iconic Opera House resembles a tent city with thousands around Circular Quay
Tents, umbrellas and camping chairs are littering the foreshore in preparation for the party
A team of fireworks technicians will also join the hoards of people who will help make Sydney’s New Year’s Eve one to remember.
The team is led by 20-year veteran Fortunato Foti, and will bring the masses a show at 9pm, and a main display again at midnight.
‘It’s been a long 10 days trying to get everything prepped, but we’re well under way and we’re hoping tonight will be a nice, clear night with a bit of breeze which will hopefully blow the smoke away and everyone will be happy,’ Mr Foti said.
Lighting designer Ziggy Ziegler said Sydney would ‘get a real treat tonight’.
This group entertained themselves with a game of cards as they waited for the fireworks
One woman prepared to welcome in the New Year in style with a glass of bubbles in each hand, while others took the unusual step of using light bulbs as drinking glasses
The scorching heat has failed to deter the crowds from descending onto Sydney’s foreshore
It’s all smiles and laughs as party-goers celebrate the occasion early, nabbing top spots along the water
‘And the waiting begins, started waiting at 8.20am’ this group of revellers said alongside their happy snap
‘Perfect shaded area for NYE picnic … it’s going to be a long New Year’s Eve,’ this woman wrote on Instagram
‘New Year’s Eve in Sydney and it’s a bit crowded,’ one woman wrote alongside her photo taken next to the Opera House
One woman’s view was impeded by a group of people shading themselves from the sun with umbrellas
NYE lighting designer Ziggy Ziegler, City of Sydney Lord Mayor Clover Moore and Sydney NYE Fireworks Director Fortunato Foti at Dawes Point Reserve
‘We want to show off the harbour bridge as it is in its natural beauty and use the shape of the harbour bridge to enhance that,’ he said.
‘This year they are going to be a lot brighter than they have been in the past … they’re going to be very, very bright.’
Sydney Lord Mayor Clover Moore said Sydney was a fantastic city and deserved the celebration.
‘(It’s) a beautiful city, a wonderful harbour, amazing creative talent, fabulous climate and most importantly a multicultural, safe and harmonious community,’ she said on Saturday.
People entering the Botanical Gardens to watch the fireworks at midnight on New Year’s Eve on December 31
A family wait in Kirribilli for the fireworks to start, first round at 9pm on New Year’s Eve, December 31
People taking their motor yacht onto the harbour to watch the fireworks at midnight on New Year’s Eve
The countdown is on for this group of partygoers waiting at the Opera House in Sydney
Key vantage spots along the water show both the iconic Opera House and the Harbour Bridge
‘It’s 8.30am in Sydney and we are at our vantage point, I hope it will be worth the hype,’ this group posted
To help cater for the huge crowds, NSW police say they an extra 2,000 officers will be out in force across Sydney.
But not just limited to land, squads of officers could be seen on jetskis on the sea and also in helicopters in the air – both in uniform and plain clothes.
Police also warn they will be using buses and garbage trucks as safety barriers in an attempt to prevent a Nice or Berlin-style terror attack.
Police have also urged people to head in early if they plan to celebrate their night on the harbour, to ensure they are able to secure a spot.
New South Wales police man roadblocks near the Opera House, as dozens of road closures pop up across the city
Hoards of people flock to Circular Quay to nab a good spot in lead up to the NYE fireworks
Portable toilets are already set up to cater for the one million people expected to flood the harbour
Hundreds of people wait in line during the scorching heat to enter into the Botanical Gardens
New South Wales police keep an eye on people entering the Botanical Gardens and Mrs Macquaries Chair
The crowds were also flooding onto the grounds at the Royal Botanical Gardens, in Sydney
The Royal Botanical Gardens are also a hotspot to catch the fireworks on New Year’s Eve
Temperatures are expected to remain in the high twenties during the day, and are only forecast to drop slightly, down to 23 degrees, come nightfall.
Clouds are also predicted to set in across the city, and the Bureau of Meteorology (BOM) says there is a 40 per cent chance of short-lived rainfall in the city’s west.
There is also a slight chance of an afternoon thunderstorm in Sydney’s west, but BOM says it is unlikely to make its way further east and into the city.
This keen group, who nabbed themselves a spot right at the front, are sure to witness the best of what Sydney’s New Year’s Eve has to offer
‘Getting in early to take the best position from shore,’ this group wrote as they pitched a tent and camping chairs in front of the Habour Bridge
Last minute work going on on top of the Harbour Bridge in preparation for the night’s events
‘Scored decent seats for New Year’s Eve fireworks tonight in Sydney. Now just another 14 hours to go,’ one man wrote alongside his photo of the harbour
Sydney is not the only city preparing for a massive night of celebration, Melbourne is also readying itself for half a million people to pack into the city.
Firecrackers have been positioned on 22 of the city’s rooftops, ensuring the show will be seen across Melbourne’s skyline.
Keen revellers have also packed out the banks of Melbourne’s Yarra River to score themselves a prime spot at one of the city’s best vantage points.
A side-by-side picture shows before (top) and after a harbourside vantage point to watch the New Years Eve fireworks
Side-by-side picture shows before (top) and after a harbourside vantage point to watch the New Years Eve fireworks was opened to the public in Sydney