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The Best Places in the world to celebrate St Patricks day



Dublin’s St Patrick’s Day celebrations may not be as big as New York City’s – but they are much longer.

The city celebrates the public holiday with a week of celebrations which include boat races, street and music performances, the Irish Beer & Whisky Festival, and, of course, the parade.

Dublin has some of the most extravagant celebrations for St Patrick’s Day (Getty)

This year’s celebrations start on March 16 and will run through March 19 – with the parade happening on March 17.

And with an audience of half a million, the parade in the Irish homeland, which proceeds from Parnell Square to St Patrick’s Cathedral, is a sight to behold.


Belfast will be awash with colour this St Patrick’s Day, Saturday 17 March 2018, with a carnival atmosphere for all the family to enjoy!

Belfast’s St Patrick’s Day celebrations will start with a spectacular carnival parade leaving Belfast City Hall at 11.30am, with professional and amateur performers, musicians and dancers. The celebrations will continue with a free outdoor concert from 1.30pm, with special guests and an eclectic range of entertainment including traditional dance, pop and multicultural music.


Derry will welcome the spring with open arms in a cacophony of colour and spectacle with a carnival parade full of dancing daffodils, busy bees and slithering snakes.

This year’s parade will leave from the Bishops Street Car Park at 2pm before finishing up at Strand Road Carpark at 3.30pm.

The carnival atmosphere will see pageant pieces from North West Carnival, Greater Shantallow Community Arts, In Your Space and Bluebell Arts and involve over 600 participants from local schools, youth clubs and arts and cultural organisations.


The Home of St Patrick Festival runs from March 8-19.

Encompassing events across Armagh and Down, this festival promises an unrivalled mix of regional and international music, theatre, spoken word, art and comedy, showcasing the stunning locations where Saint Patrick walked and worked.

With an eclectic programme of events, you are sure to find something that will get you dancing and singing this Saint Patrick’s season.

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New York City’s St. Patrick’s Day parade makes its way along Fifth Avenue for the 256th time on March 17, placing it among the oldest parades in the country. And with nearly 150,000 people turning out to march annually, it has the most participants of any St. Pat’s parade in the world.

The inaugural St. Patrick’s Day parade in New York City was held on March 17, 1762, by Irish ex-patriots and members of the British Army who were deployed in the colony of New York. They were ecstatic to show off Irish pride, particularly because it was illegal to wear green during this time in Ireland, according to the parade’s website. Notably, the parade doesn’t feature floats, automobiles or commercial vehicles — just people.

Approximately two million people are expected to line the streets of Midtown Manhattan for the biggest St Patrick’s Day parade in the world. Running since 1762, the NYC parade starts from 44th Street and 5th Avenue and runs up the avenue to 79th Street. Loretta Brennan Glucksman of the American IrelandFund is Grand Marshal and you can follow the action live on NBCNew


Everything goes green in Chicago for St Patrick’s Day, from the city’s biggest landmark buildings, to the Chicago River, which has been dyed a luminous shade by the Chicago Journeymen Plumbers since the early 1960s. Environmentally-friendly colouring is added to the water on the morning of the parade.

The personal finance website WalletHub recently named Chicago as the best city in the US in which to celebrate St Patrick’s Day, on the basis of a survey of 200 cities and considering factors including St Patrick’s Day traditions, costs, safety and accessibility and weather.


St Patrick’s Day events in Boston include the St. Patrick’s Day Parade in South Boston (locally known as “Southie”) – but that’s only the beginning of fun things to do.

The parade begins at the Broadway ‘T’ Station and ends at Andrew Square, South Boston. Your best bet for viewing the parade is to stake out a spot anywhere along Broadway. Marchers continue to Telegraph St to Dorchester St ending at Andrew Square.

You’ll quickly see why Boston is considered to be the most Irish of any American city!



The St Patrick’s Day in London celebrations for 2018 will have the carnival atmosphere we have come to associate with this event in London over past years, especially on Sunday, March 18th. The floats, dancers, and bands will start out from Green Park and head along Piccadilly and wind up in Trafalgar Square. The food tents will be erected and the food and drink will be flowing. The entertainment from the stage will have an emphasise on young talent this year with a prominence given to the diversity of London and the Irish diaspora as a whole.

The London parade is part of the three-day St Patrick’s Day Festival (March 16th-18th), which brings more than 125,000 people to events across the city centre. The parade will follow a 1.5mile (2.4km) route down Piccadilly to Whitehall, with actor Imelda Staunton and broadcaster Gloria Hunniford as joint Grand Marshals. Trafalgar Square is HQ for the festival, with musical entertainment and an Irish Street Food Market.


It wouldn’t be St Patrick’s Day without a dynamic parade around Liverpool and with Liverpool’s historic links to the Emerald Isle, the day is always a big occasion in the city, from the St Patrick’s Day parade through the streets by some of Liverpool’s Irish community groups, to the revellers who pack out the city’s Irish pubs to raise a glass of Guinness to St Patrick. From 1 pm on March 17th, there will be an atmospheric Community Parade kicking off on Great Orford Street at the Old Irish Centre.

There are 7 bands confirmed for this year’s festivities and these include the Liverpool Irish Flute Band, the Cloughaneely Band and the Liverpool Katumba Drummers.

Join the parade and enjoy the day as the excitement builds for this year’s Paddy’s Night festivities in Liverpool.

Head to the cobbled streets of Liverpool’s famous Mathew Street area and you really can’t go wrong. One of the most vibrant nightlife spots in the city, you’ll find everything from tasty cocktails at Bar Signature to the perfect pint of Guinness at Flanagan’s Apple.

Hold onto your Guinness hats as the night closes in on St Patrick’s Day in Liverpool and make your way to the Baltic Market for an Irish shin-dig unlike any other.

Expect pop up whiskey bars, Irish Gins and plenty of yummy food to keep you fuelled for the long night ahead.

Just round the corner, you’ll find a Shit Irish Disco taking place in Camp and Furnace. Endless Irish tunes, plenty of green glitter and the obligatory giant inflatables will be the order of the day if you’re up for the craic.

The Irish Disco Mafia are coming to 24 Kitchen Street and bringing with them Irish music acts who like nothing more than to party it up Irish style.

Queen and Disco from Derry are a group of five friends who simply love to share their love of great party music and they’re just one of the talented groups performing at the St Patricks Day session in 24 Kitchen Street.



The first official St Patrick’s Day parade in the French capital will leave from the Irish Cultural Centre and will follow a route through the Latin Quarter in the 5th arrondissement. It is being organised by the Irish in France disapora association and will be attended by the Ireland’s Ambassador to France, Patricia O’Brien. It will be led by the Paris and District Pipe Band.


In 1678, more than half of the Caribbean island’s population was made up of Irish Catholics, who sought refuge from persecution after the West Indies was settled by Cromwell. March 17th is celebrated as a national holiday, marking the 250th anniversary of an unsuccessful slave uprising in 1798. The 11-day St Patrick’s Festival (March 9th-19th) is a celebration of Montserrat’s Irish roots and Saint Patrick’s Day is also the anniversary of the country’s first slave uprising, that took place in 1768, which adds African and Caribbean festivities to the day of celebration..



For a city with so many inhabitants who are Irish or of Irish descent, Sydney’s St Patrick’s Day festivities have a chequered past. There hasn’t been a parade there since 2015. Last year there was none due to construction works in the city, and in 2016 it was cancelled due to debt issues. But Sydney Opera House is turning green again for the 2018 celebrations, having last been lit up in the Irish national colour in 2014. The parade is due to take place at the Entertainment Quarter, Moore Park.


The Irish have flocked to Western Australia in recent years to work, and with so many Irish families now living there, the community came together in 2013 to restart the annual St Patrick’s Day parade, which had not been held in four years. The parade will again take to the streets of Leederville and will be followed by a family fun day at Medibank Stadium. The theme for the parade is “The Future” and it is the final part of a three-year concept of past, present and future.



Irish Week 2018 (March 14th-25th) is the largest festival of Irish culture in Russia and includes the 11th Moscow Irish Film Festival, as well as the St Patrick’s Day parade, which takes place on the 24th of the month, at the entrance to Sokolniki Park. On March 17th, an eight-hour music marathon, St Patrick’s Day & Night, takes place in Izvestiya Hall.

Gastronomy becomes part of Moscow’s Irish Week for the first time in 2018. Diners can order a green burger (a green bun and guacamole added to a black Angus patty) at Starlite Diner. Chicago Grill & Bar is running workshops dedicated to Irish cuisine, with Irish stew, potato bread, Irish breakfast and chowder on the menu.



The Irish community in South Korea is relatively small, but the popularity of the St Patrick’s Day celebrations has swelled year-on-year since they were first held in 2000. It is hosted by the Irish Association of Korea to promote Ireland and share its sporting and cultural traditions with the Korean community. The theme of this year’s event is “An Irish Welcome”.



While it is not strictly speaking a parade, the Irish contingent taking part in the UAE Happiness Carnival at City Walk, Dubai, are turning their section of the carnival into Dubai’s first St Patrick’s Day parade, with Irish music and dancing.



Believe it or not, Buenos Aires is home to the 5th largest Irish population in the word – and in a city that loves to party, St Patrick’s Day is always a winner. Known here as La Fiesta de San Patricio, the streets around the Retiro district fill with music, dancing and merriment in a 10 block radius.

Watch the parade at Plaza San Martin or party the night away on Reconquista Street.


The Singapore River is dyed green, costumes are donned, and a Harley-Davidson convoy leads the pack at the Singapore St. Patrick’s Day Parade, the largest celebration in Southeast Asia.

The St. Patrick’s Society of Singapore (comprised mostly of ex-pats) also hosts an annual ball at the Shangri-La Hotel with free-flowing wine and beer, live music, prize drawings, and Irish dancing.



Auckland holds the distinction of holding the first St. Patrick’s Day party, since midnight on March 17 reaches New Zealand’s largest city before anywhere else. It is also the farthest celebration away from Ireland, almost exactly the opposite end of the world at a massive 11,290 miles away from Dublin. Naturally, Auckland’s 1,076-foot Sky Tower is lit with the Irish Tricolour for the day. (Source: St. Patrick’s Festival Auckland)



The Gateway of India in Mumbai goes green for St. Patrick’s Day, and the Irish pubs around the country’s major cities stock up on Murphy’s stout. (Source: Times of India).



Every year, Istanbul’s Irish Centre, a.k.a. The James Joyce Irish Pub, holds an Irish festival around St. Patrick’s Day. Just off one of Istanbul’s most notorious nightlife streets, the pub is the capital’s only Irish bar and features live dancing, music, an ample beer selection, and plenty of traditional Irish food – oh, also an attached boutique hotel, appropriately called the Istanbul Shamrock. (Source: Istanbul Trails).




Every year the Norwegian Irish Society gathers on Jernbanetorget to have Norway’s largest St. Patrick’s Day Parade. Founded by the Oslo St. Patrick’s Day Association (above), mostly comprised of Irish ex-pats, in 2009, the parade has grown to an all-inclusive celebration of the Irish in Scandinavia. (Source: Norwegian Irish Society).



On the southern Costa Blanca in eastern Spain, this picturesque Spanish outpost plays host to the largest parade in Spain (Madrid is the close second). A favoured destination of Irish vacationers, the fiesta lasts well into the night and spills onto the white sand beaches, long after the parade has ended. (Source: National Geographic)