Sober New Year: Ten alcohol-free events to welcome in 2022

You don't have to be drunk to have a good time on New Year's Eve. Don't believe us? Here's a list of ten alcohol-free year-end experiences to prove it

Skiddle Staff

Last updated: 15th Dec 2021

The end of each year is customarily marked by us beer-chugging, prosecco-sipping, shot slamming Brits in stereotypically boozy fashion. It's something we do better than most, getting loaded and celebrating, and there's no grander occasion than that of New Year's Eve. But let's say that in 2021 you've decided to knock the strong stuff on the head. Maybe you need a break from alcohol or perhaps you've encountered a health issue that's made you re-evaluate your outlook on drinking altogether? Whatever the circumstance, you're probably asking yourself right now - 'what is there to do on December 31st that doesn't involve a drink?' Well, we've got some good news for you...

There are plenty of experiences and activities to be found for those taking an oath of sobriety over the festive period and beyond. From drive-in film screenings and award-winning theatrical productions to stand up comedy shows and mouthwatering dining affairs - you don't necessarily have to get merry to have a merry old time on New Year's Eve.

To help you find the right event, we've gone to the effort of compiling some of the many alcohol-free experiences you can find on Skiddle into one brief and yet comprehensive list, taking in a broad range of events and entertainment types happening in towns and cities UK-wide. 

Don't let your abstinence hamper your ability to have a good time on Friday 31st December 2021. Check out some of the superb sober functions and celebrations on offer below and secure your place today!


(Click or tap on the event titles, artist or venue names below for tickets and more)



NYE at Hafla

Where: Hafla Hafla in Liverpool

Feast your way into another new year at the Hafla Hafla in Liverpool.

Following last year's cancelling of all things festive, the restaurant, whose name when translated from Arabic into English means 'party party', has announced a very special New Year get together to commemorate the beginning of a hopefully less restricted 2022. 

So, what can punters looking to attend this end of year banquet look forward to? An aesthetically pleasing eatery laying on a six-course tasting menu full of scrumptious dishes, plenty of fizz and non-alcoholic beverages, for all you going-sober heroes, a warm and friendly welcome from staff and a truly unique dining experience in one of the city's best independent dining rooms. 


Find tickets for NYE at Hafla - here




Enchanted Gardens Light Trail

Where: Town Gardens in Swindon, Old Town

Witness the historic Town Garden's of Swindon as you never have before this New Year's Eve. 

Illuminated by hundreds of light installations and state-of-the-art lighting effects, the Victorian-era gardens, situated in the South West of England, will see guests navigating their way through a bewitching landscape filled with trees, sculptures and so much more. Interact with the exhibitions, discover low-level soundscapes and immerse yourself in the winter scenes that surround you at this festive instalment. A perfect New Years adventure for those with young families.


Find tickets for Enchanted Gardens Light Trail - here




Planet Circus OMG! Lincolnshire Showground

Where: Lincolnshire Showground in Lincoln

Roll up, roll up! The Planet Circus OMG! Christmas spectacular is in Lincolnshire on Friday 31st December.

Taking temporary residence upon the Lincolnshire Showground, the UK's largest travelling circus is set to put on a breathtaking show on the ultimate evening of 2021. Watch as motorcyclists test their mettle in the death-defying FMX stunts, witness the return of the terrifying Globe Of Death, gasp at stories high trapeze artists and laugh out loud at Wallison the clown. An amazing family-friendly event not to be missed.  


Find tickets for Planet Circus OMG! Lincolnshire Showground - here




Aladdin (Pantomime @ Lyric Hammersmith)

Where: Lyric Hammersmith in London

The critically acclaimed West End pantomime show, Aladdin will continue to wow audiences with special performances running over the festive period, including New Year's Eve.

Join Aladdin, Genie and all of your favourite characters on a magical carpet ride where all of your wishes come true! Experience this fantastic Christmas revamp of a time-honoured Disney classic, written by award-winning comedian, actor and composer, Vikki Stone, full of live music, sing along's and plenty of belly-aching laughter. 

A magnificent way to send off 2021 without the need for a drink. 


Find tickets for Aladdin (Pantomime @ Lyric Hammersmith) - here




Andrew Lloyd Webber's Cinderella - The Musical

Where: Gillian Lynne Theatre in London

Set in the picturesque fairy-tale town of Belleville, overrun by its gorgeous inhabitants, this reworking of yet another classic story follows Cinderella and the blossoming love story between herself and her only friend, next in line to the throne, Prince Sebastian. 

Stubborn in her ways, Cinderella refuses to live alongside the handsome townsfolk of the town, crowned the world's most beautiful place for forty-nine years in a row, but upon hearing Prince Sebastian is to be the next to rule the town, following the loss of Prince Charming, things begin to change.

An unexpected spark ignites a flourishing relationship between the pair and only The Godmother can help Cinderella to prevent the Royal Wedding and the Queen's wishes from being fulfilled. Can The Godmother fix the situation? Will Cinderella be with Prince Sebastian? Well, you'll have to see for yourself. 


Find tickets for Cinderella - The Musical - here




Winter Wonderland - Ice Skating 2021

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Where: Rainton Arena in Houghton-le-Spring

Houghton-le Spring's Rainton Arena has been transformed into a magical Winter Wonderland, filled with arcade attractions and fairground rides, and an enormous open-air ice rink.

Offering another great alternative to a day/night out drinking on New Year's Eve (you should also definitely stay clear of any alcohol before heading out on the ice), the expansive outdoor rink allows room for novices to learn how to glide like a pro, whilst seasoned ice-topping dazzlers can also stretch out and try out some new moves. 

Skate from dusk until twilight on Friday 31st December. Soak up the romantic atmosphere with your partner as the setting sun is replaced by a canvas of glistening stars, or take your family for an unforgettable and, no doubt, hilarious year-end activity.

Support Polar Bears are available for your little ones and skate hire is available at the rink. 


Find tickets for Winter Wonderland - Ice Skating 2021 - here




Laugh Out Loud Comedy Club Bournemouth

Where: Pavilion Dance South West (Ocean Room Theatre) in Bournemouth

Welcome 2022 in fits of laughter this New Year's Eve, at Bournemouths Laugh Out Loud Comedy Club.

Presenting some of the biggest and funniest names on the UK comedy circuit, those who frequently make appearances of renowned shows from the telly such as BBC2’s Mock the Week, Channel 4’s 8 out of 10 cats, BBC1’s Michael Mcintyre’s comedy roadshow and Have I Got News for You, this side-splitting evening of comedy will have you literally laughing out loud from start to finish. 

Previous names to have appeared at the club include Jason Manford, Sarah Millican and John Bishop, all before they made it big!

Sample an incredible, fall about laughing atmosphere courtesy of four brilliant comedians this NYE.


Find tickets for the Laugh Out Loud Comedy Club - here




Christmas City - The Exorcist (New Years Eve film showing)

Where: Power League Soccer Dome in Manchester

A curveball offering for those looking to do the New Year celebration a little differently this year, and one most certainly for the staunch horror fans amongst us...

Get down to the Power League Soccer Dome in Manchester and take in the drive-in cinema spectacle that is Christmas City. But be aware, it won't all be candy canes and dancing elves come December 31st. Instead, guests will be greeted by a huge screen showing one of the greatest and most psychologically disturbing horror flicks ever made - The Exorcist. 

Don't miss your chance to witness this iconic film, a true story based upon the exorcism of Roland Doe back in 1949, as you've never seen it before. Cue the tubular bells...


Find tickets for Christmas City - The Exorcist - here




La Clique

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Where: Christmas In Leicester Square in London

A festive show that is known for leaving its audiences astounded, the always-popular La Clique has made its welcomed return to Leicester Square in the heart of the English capital for a run of shows over Christmas and importantly, the New Year.

Step inside the travelling show's impressive mirror tent, also known as Spiegeltent, for an evening of alternative cabaret entertainment. Expect to see world-class artists performing high-risk stunts - from sword swallowing and fire-breathing to high rope trapeze acts - whilst also singing and dancing to expertly choreographed cabaret numbers played out by the fantastic La Clique Palace Orkestra.

Described as a 'potent cocktail of sexy circus and music', this edgy show will have you rub ing your eyes in amazement. One not to be missed this New Year's Eve.


Find tickets for La Clique - here




Pantoland at the Palladium

Where: London Palladium in London

Yes, we've added another panto to our sober NYE event list (Oh no you didn't! Oh yes we did!). Come on, nothing quite encapsulates the festive period, especially in the onstage world, more than a good old pantomime. And this one is a cracker...

Presenting, Pantoland at the Palladium, featuring some of the greatest entertainers on the face of the earth including singing sensation Donny Osmond, ultimate pantomime star, Julian Clary and pantomime favourites, Paul Zerdin, Nigel Havers and Gary Wilmot to name a few.

Filled with roaring comedy and huge show-stopping msuical numbers, this star-studded extravaganza, a celebration of all things pantomime, is the ultimate feel-good event. A highly recommended NYE alternative that requires no alcohol to be enjoyed - wholesome and suitable for all ages.

Why not take a magical trip to Pantoland at The Palladium this New Year's Eve.


Find tickets for Pantoland at the Palladium - here




Check out our What's On Guide to discover even more rowdy raves and sweaty gigs taking place over the coming weeks and months. For festivals, lifestyle events and more, head on over to our Things To Do page or be inspired by the event selections on our Inspire Me page.