Are you lucky enough to be planning a St. Patrick’s Day getaway? There are so many places you could go this year! Believe it or not, there are many cities around the world that celebrate St. Patrick’s Day bigger than any other day of the year. Want to get in the Irish spirit? Book a ticket to one of these cities for the ultimate St. Paddy’s Day excursion.
Dublin is the natural winner of St. Paddy’s Day celebrations. If you’re after Irish authenticity, you can’t beat this destination! St. Patrick’s Day is Dublin’s biggest festival, eclipsing even Christmas. Over 100,000 people from all over the world make their way to Dublin for the festivities! If you go, you’ll be in for a treat. The celebration officially lasts for three days, but you can find fun things to do all month long. Don’t miss the famous parade, and be sure to stick around for drinking and traditional Irish dances. If you stay until the end of the festival, you can also watch the Gaelic Games, a huge sporting event. Experiencing St. Patrick’s Day on the Emerald Isle is something you must do at least once!
Boston is America’s most Irish city. Of course, that means it pulls out all the stops for St. Patrick’s Day! Join the sea of green-clad spectators who annually line up to watch the iconic Boston St. Patrick’s Day parade. You’ll get to witness a glimpse of Boston’s Irish culture on the streets before you head to the Dropkick Murphy concert or join an Irish pub crawl.
Pittsburgh’s St. Patrick’s Day parade dates back to 1869. With a history this long, you can’t go wrong! The St. Paddy’s festivities include the parade, of course, plus face painting, music, green beer, family events, and much more. Pittsburgh is almost as Irish as Boston—over 15% of its residents claim to trace their heritage back to Ireland! Whether or not you have Irish in your blood, you’ll be sure to have a wonderful time at Pittsburgh’s St. Patrick’s Day celebration.
Although New Zealand is on the other side of the world from Ireland, it still has plenty of Celtic fun to offer revelers! Check out the Auckland Irish Society Fair Day, a family-friendly event that includes Irish music, dancing, games, and more. You can also attend the Hugh Green Group St. Patrick’s Parade and Festival as well as the celebration thrown by the Auckland Irish Society.
Buffalo will hold its 88th St. Patrick’s Day parade this year! Actually, Buffalo boasts not one but two annual St. Paddy’s Day parades. Check out the culturally authentic parade in the First Ward a few days ahead of time, and then head to the big parade on Delaware Avenue when March 17 rolls around. After you’ve watched the kilt-clad bagpipers and traditional Irish dances, make your way through the crowds for a glass of beer at any of Buffalo’s Irish pubs.
St. Patrick’s Day in Montreal must be executed in a very specific way, if you’re going to do it right. Start the day off with the Irish coffee and pancakes, then stake out your parade viewing spot on Ste. Catherine Street. Expect large crowds, because this is the largest and most famous St. Patrick’s Day parade in all of Canada! It’s been going on without interruption since 1824. Since then, it’s changed quite a bit, but you’ll still get to see traditional Irish performing arts in addition to the modern floats. Once the parade is over, fight the crowds to an Irish pub for good beer and relaxation.
Chicago is a unique place to celebrate St. Patrick’s Day. This is the only place (as far as we know) where you can celebrate the holiday next to an emerald-green river. That’s right—every year, the Chicago River is dyed green in honor of St. Patrick. About 400,000 people gather to watch this annual event before turning around to see the parade march down the street. This is a massive parade, so be prepared to stay for three hours! There will be bagpipes, dancing, and plenty of people in orange wigs.
While it’s not nearly as famous as the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade, New York City’s St. Patrick’s Day Parade is pretty darn awesome. The parade runs along 5th Avenue from 44th to 79th Street, and it lasts a good six hours. Of course, New York offers a whole lot more than just a parade for your St. Paddy’s Day enjoyment! You can also visit the Irish Art’s Center for an open day, when everyone is invited to enjoy refreshments and try traditional Irish arts, from crafts to dances. Sign up for a pub crawl, or attend Sober St. Patrick’s Day at the Donny Golden School of Dance. If you want to go more low-key, check out one of the many Irish restaurants in the city.
Montserrat. Technically, this isn’t a city. It’s an island. However, this island is so small that the whole thing could fit inside New York City ten times over! Montserrat is an excellent place to spend St. Patrick’s Day. For one thing, it’s called the Emerald Isle of the Caribbean, which basically makes it Ireland’s sister (or second cousin, or something). For another, Montserrat is the only country in the world that recognizes St. Patrick’s Day as a national holiday! Why? Although it may seem surprising, Irish people once made up the majority on the island. Today, the celebration includes a fantastic mixture of Afro-Caribbean and Irish culture. Enjoy a parade, Caribbean-style food stalls (decked out in green shamrocks, of course), and masquerade dancing.
Where will you go this year? From sunlit coasts to snowy streets, you have many options for your St. Paddy’s celebration. Which one would you like to visit? Let us know in the comments!