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Planning a Millennium Getaway 

According to the Greenwich Royal Observatory in England — the official timekeeper of the world — the first populated place that will experienced the new millennium was near the Chatham Islands of New Zealand. The first place on the globe to truly experience the new millennium before anyone else, however, was near Balleny Island in Antarctica.

Around the world, famous tourist attractions filled up with reservations for millennium parties and celebrations. People from all parts of the world were looking to travel to such places as:


Times Square in New York

The Tower of London

The Eiffel Tower in Paris

The Coliseum in Rome

Castles in Germany and Austria

Temples and castles in Japan

The pyramids of Egypt

The Acropolis in Greece

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France and England had both erected giant clocks counting down to January 1, 2000. The clock in England is located in Greenwich; the clock in France is atop the Eiffel Tower.


England planned to reconstruct the sailing of the Mayflower 2000 — based on the famous ship that brought the Pilgrims to America. Several ships sailed from England to the United States, reaching ports in Boston and other destinations all around the world.


World-famous Times Square in New York was one of the most densely populated places in the world. While many landmark hotels were booked with private parties, the Empire State building was be open to the public. Hotels near other popular American tourist attractions filled up just as quickly, including Walt Disney World in Florida, San Francisco Bay, and the casinos of Las Vegas, Nevada.


Members of The Millennium Society, a nonprofit organization in Washington, D.C., sailed on the Queen Elizabeth II to the Pyramid of Cheops in Egypt for a World Millennium Charity Ball.


A travel agency in Japan planned a ship cruise from Japan to Hawaii that crossed the International Date Line at the stroke of midnight on December 31, 1999. Because the ship was traveling eastward, cruise passengers got to experience the arrival of the new millennium more than once.


Brazil had a grand-scale beach party in Rio de Janeiro. North Cape in Norway hosted New Year’s Eve music celebrations, and the citizens of Iceland lit great bonfires to celebrate the arrival of the new millennium.

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