The 6 best cities to celebrate St. Patrick’s Day
With less than a week to go, it’s time to start planning your St. Patricks Day shenanigans; a national holiday to celebrate our patron saint, display Irish pride and celebrate the Irish spirit. While most of us will venture to the local parade, drink Guinness and paint our face green (or wear a leprechaun costume if you’re really up for the craic!), why not visit somewhere different this year? Blessed with a long weekend, it’s the perfect opportunity to broaden your horizons and see how the Irish community host some impressive celebrations both at home and abroad!
We’ve covered six cities; three in Ireland and three further afield. Where will you venture to this year?
Our wee city has its very own Spring Carnival boasting an action-packed weekend celebrating music, food and culture. The fun will be overflowing in every corner of the city, from the Guildhall Square to St. Columb’s Cathedral. One of the busiest weekends in the social calendar, pubs and clubs will be full of St. Paddy’s day cheer! Better still, if you get peckish, The LegenDerry Food Festival will see a host of local restaurants serve up their signature dishes! There’s something here for all the family, what’s not to love? (We’re not biased!)
Jumping for joy! St. Patrick’s Day in Derry 2017
The largest celebrations the emerald isle has to offer, Dublin will host its annual St. Patricks Festival from 15th – 19th March. The legendary parade will travel across the city, boasting arts and crafts, flamboyant performers and uplifting music. However, if you’d rather soak up the lively pub atmosphere, you’ll find plenty of live traditional music in the pubs and an even better street atmosphere throughout the cobbled lanes of Temple bar!
Painting the streets green in Temple Bar, Dublin
Belfast will come alive with vibrant colour this St. Patrick’s Day, with a carnival buzz the entire family can enjoy! Circus entertainers, musicians, dancers and puppets, the parade will include a myriad of amateur and professional performers to celebrate the Irish nation. There’s a free outdoor concert too, with some famous faces and special guests entertaining visitors with traditional dance and pop music.
Dress up fun in Belfast, 2017
It might come as a surprise that the largest St. Patrick’s Day celebrations in the UK can be found in Birmingham! The Irish community will come out in force with the third largest parade in the world (after Dublin and New York). Unlike other locations, Birmingham host their celebrations early, with all events taking place on Sunday 11th March. There’s an Emerald Mile fun run, as well as music, a parade and some tasty street food! With the celebrations falling on Mother’s Day, the festival has a theme honouring Birmingham and Irish women, including a competition to crown Birmingham’s best mum! To keep the little ones entertained, head down to Emerald Village where there’s lots of kid’s activities, a petting zoo and funfair.
Irish Dancers Take to the Streets of Birmingham (Source: Birmingham Mail)
With a river that runs green for St. Patrick, there’s no doubt the celebrations in the Windy City will be huge. The dying of the Chicago rivers kicks off at 9am, with the parade beginning at 12pm at the corner of Balbo Avenue and Columbus Drive. Whether you have Irish ancestry or not, all Chicagoans become Paddy’s on the big day, flocking to watch the bagpipers and Irish dancers flood the streets with Irish spirit.
Chicago river turns Emerald Green for St. Patrick’s Day
New York will transform into a shamrock city on March 17th! If you’re lucky enough to be there, you’ll witness some of the largest St. Patrick’s Day celebrations, with a parade that first originated in 1762! With an infamous parade running from 11am – 5pm, you’d be hard pushed to find anywhere outside of Ireland that goes greener than New Yorkers. There’s lots of fun events, tours, pub crawls and Celtic dance performers throughout the day too!
Flying the flag in New York, 2015
Celebrated in more countries than any other national festival, you’re sure to find a pint of stout and some giddy leprechauns on March 17th. Whether you’re staying in the Emerald Isle or flying the Irish flag across the water, there’s plenty of craic to be had wherever you are this St. Patrick’s Day.