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St. Patrick’s Day in Ireland

St Patrick's Day
Ireland Map
Oscar Wilde at Archbishop Ryan Park in Merrion Square Dublin
temple bar
Irish Pub Scene gathering

St. Patrick’s Day in Ireland

story by: Mike Williams

These days St. Paddy’s Day is enjoyed throughout most of the world to celebrate Irish culture. If you’re in New Zealand or Australia, then the 17th of March might mean wearing a splash of green and heading down to the standing-room only Irish pub for a pint of Guinness. Other main cities kick it up a few notches. The famous New York and London parades, in terms of size and spectator numbers, are arguably bigger than anything even Ireland has to offer.

However, if you’ve always wanted to visit Ireland, then you can’t beat celebrating St. Patrick’s Day in its spiritual home. Naturally, it’s a national holiday and considering the amount of green coloured Guinness that gets consumed, it’s a miracle that anyone is fit to work the next day.

It’s not all about the drinking though, and anyone planning on being in Ireland for the day should consider visiting for as much of the week prior as possible. The major cities, especially Dublin, take the opportunity to showcase Irish culture through free shows, concerts and exhibitions.

Of course, the highlights of the festivities are the parades, which are held, in varying sizes, in most Ireland cities. Dublin hosts the biggest parade, where over half a million spectators line the streets. If you’re lucky enough to attend the Dublin parade, don’t forget to show up a few hours early as locals start lining up at least two hours before the 11a.m. start. If you’re planning on staying out afterwards, be prepared to pay cover charges in the local pubs. 

Downpatrick, in County Down is the rumoured burial location of St. Patrick himself, and after Dublin has the next biggest parade in Ireland.

If you want to experience a parade in Ireland, but don’t feel like standing long, then you may want to head over to Dripsey, Cork, home of the world’s shortest St. Patrick's Day parade. Their parade consists simply of the hundred yards between the town’s two pubs!

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