Nobody celebrates their national holiday quite like the Irish. St. Patrick’s Day is a time to celebrate culture, heritage, and history. If you’re living in Dublin, you’ll find that you’re in the heart of the action, where the typical day of celebrations is drawn out into a week-long, Guinness-fuelled festival. So grab a pint, put on your leprechaun hat, and get ready to embrace an unparalleled sense of national pride, with the 10 best St. Patrick’s Day events in Dublin.
1. The St. Patrick’s Day Parade
On 17th March, people flock to the streets in huge numbers to witness a parade that starts at Parnell Square, showcasing Irish values, history, and culture. Head out early if you want a good spot, and keep an eye out for impressive performances by the local emergency services. You’ll have a chance to see floats put together in local community projects – this is something that you shouldn’t miss.
2. In the Footsteps of St. Patrick
If you didn’t already know, St. Patrick’s Day is a religious celebration that remembers the death of Ireland’s patron saint. Irish historian Pat Liddy is running an historical walking tour that takes you around ancient sites that celebrate the history of St. Patrick. With tours running through the week, you’ll get to see important Dublin locations that are free from tourists, including the two great medieval cathedrals.
3. Guinness Supper Club
You’ll have to put aside some of your student loan for this one, but it’s going to be worth it. You’ll get to head out to the Guinness Storehouse, for an evening of food and drink – all included. Feast on Irish classics that are prepared by award-winning chefs, while you enjoy some unique local beers, live music, and storytelling. End your evening in the world-famous Gravity Bar, where you can enjoy the festivities while taking in the Dublin skyline – perfect if you want to take a date out to celebrate.
4. Festival Big Day Out
There might be a few sore heads following the St. Patrick’s Day celebrations, but it will be worth getting out of bed to head to Merrion Square for this free event. Here you’ll find a vibrant carnival, with street theatre, aerial performances, and music. If you’re not a local, you can try out some Irish language classes, or just retreat to the arcade tent for a retro gaming experience. This is perfect for all ages, so head down with your friends to witness some quirky performances.
5. Dublin: A Year in Words
Here’s one for the literature students! Dublin is a city that is known for producing famous authors and poets, and it’s still a place that offers inspiration to creative minds. A Year in Words is a free event in the form of a poetry trail, where you’ll get to walk to prominent locations in the city and listen to contemporary artists read their work. Celebrate the diversity of the city and learn about the cultural influences that shape modern Irish poetry.
6. The Gaelic Games
If you’re a sports fan then look no further, because St. Patrick’s Day is the perfect time to support your team in Irish sport. Head down to Croke Park to watch hurling and Gaelic football. If you’d prefer to attend another event, you can always head down the day after to watch Dublin face Monaghan in the Allianz Football League.
7. Temple Bar
Locals tend to avoid the Temple Bar tourist trap, turning to the less-hectic areas of the city to enjoy a pint of Guinness for half the price. That being said, people still visit from far and wide, just to see the festivities unfold in Dublin’s famous nightlife area. If you don’t fancy making this your location of choice, it’s still worth taking a stroll through the busy streets to soak up the patriotic atmosphere on offer.
8. St. Patrick’s Week Pub Crawl
If you’re not a local, you can celebrate St. Patrick’s Day just like the Irish do, with a pub crawl around some of the best watering holes that the city has to offer. There will plenty of Guinness and Jameson whiskey, with enough live music on offer to keep you thoroughly entertained. It’s just €21.59 per person, which is the perfect excuse for you and your friends to go out and experience Irish culture at its finest.
9. Greening the City
Throughout the festivities, Dublin is lit up with Ireland’s national colour. After dark, the city’s popular landmarks bathe in green light, which, if you’re not originally from Ireland, is sure to give you a sense of the patriotism within the country. Take a stroll around the city to take in as much as you can; it won’t be around for too long after the celebrations end!
10. Food Walking Tour
If you’re a foodie in search of an Irish fix, then head out on a food-tasting tour throughout the festivities. You can soak in the Irish culture as you take a leisurely three-hour stroll through the city centre, visiting eight different venues where you can taste locally-sourced Irish dishes. You’ll have the opportunity to learn all about the history of the country, and your knowledgeable guide will help you understand how Irish delicacies have developed over time.
Never Miss an Event
Despite being small, Dublin is a busy city with plenty going on – take a look at our blog to make sure you never miss out on the best events for you.