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5 ways to celebrate St. Patrick’s Day in Dublin

Images by Wallace Bentt & Benjamin Ruiz. Edited by Benjamin Ruiz

Photo by Benjamin Ruiz for thecircular.org

As the beautiful Emerald Isle prepares for its most vibrant and widely celebrated holiday, St. Patrick’s Day is fast approaching. This day, which commemorates Ireland’s patron saint, offers Irish people and visitors alike a myriad of opportunities to engage with Ireland’s rich culture, history and festive spirit.

Who was St Patrick?
He was a 5th century Romano-British missionary and bishop in Ireland and is revered as the nation’s principal patron saint. His legacy is a mixture of myth and history, and he is mainly credited with introducing Christianity to Ireland. He used the shamrock to explain the concept of the Holy Trinity.

Every year on 17 March, St Patrick’s Day is celebrated to honour his lasting influence and to celebrate Irish culture and faith.

Here is a guide to five quintessential experiences that capture the essence of St Patrick’s Day celebrations in Dublin.

Photo by Benjamin Ruiz for thecircular.org

See Dublin’s St Patrick’s Day Parade

Dublin, the heart of Ireland, hosts the most spectacular St Patrick’s Day Parade, attracting crowds from all over the world.

The streets come alive with a dazzling array of floats, performers and musicians that capture the vibrancy of Irish culture.

More than just a march, the parade is a moving tapestry of Irish folklore, history and artistic innovation. If you want to get a good vantage point, it is recommended that you arrive early as the start time is 12:00.

Some of the best places to watch the parade are: Patrick Street (opposite St Patrick’s Cathedral), Dame Street and O’Conell Street.

Photo by Benjamin Ruiz for thecircular.org

Enjoy the Craic in a local pub with live music:
No St. Patrick’s Day is complete without a visit to a traditional Irish pub, especially on this day of celebration.

I recommend Dublin pubs that host live music sessions, creating an atmosphere of camaraderie and merriment. These are places where you can dance to traditional Irish music, swap stories with the locals and enjoy a pint of Guinness.

Immersing yourself in this atmosphere offers a true taste of Irish hospitality and the community spirit of St Patrick’s Day, just be aware that the pubs closer to the city centre will be very crowded, but that doesn’t detract from the fun.

Soak up the culture with events in the Festival Quarter:
For a more contemporary celebration, head to the Festival Quarter. With a variety of events including concerts, street performances and workshops, most are free and cater to all ages and interests.

Attending these events offers a unique insight into how St Patrick’s Day is celebrated in Ireland today, blending tradition and innovation.

This year’s events take place from Saturday 16 March to Sunday 17 March.

Photo by Benjamin Ruiz for thecircular.org

Explore castles and museums
Ireland’s storied past and breathtaking landscapes are encapsulated in its castles and museums, many of which offer special programmes for St Patrick’s Day.

Visiting these historic sites allows you to step back in time and explore the rich tapestry of Irish history, from ancient times to independence and beyond.

The National Photographic Archive and the National Print Museum are some of my recommendations.

Whether it’s the medieval majesty of Dublin Castle or the literary treasures of the National Museum of Ireland, these visits offer a serene contrast to the day’s festivities and a deeper understanding of Ireland’s heritage.

Wear green to join in the celebrations.
The tradition of wearing green on St Patrick’s Day is more than just a fashion statement – it’s a symbol of unity, pride and connection to Irish culture.

From vibrant costumes to a simple green accessory, wearing green makes you part of the national (and global) celebration.

It’s a fun and inclusive way to get into the festive spirit, whether you’re watching the parade, enjoying a pint or exploring the historic streets of Ireland.

Photo by Benjamin Ruiz for thecircular.org

St. Patrick’s Day in Ireland is an experience that goes beyond mere celebration; it is an immersive journey into the heart and soul of Irish culture.

By participating in these activities, you will not only join in the festivities, but also connect with the enduring spirit and heritage of the Irish people.
So this 17 March, don your green, soak up the vibrant atmosphere and celebrate St. Patrick’s Day in true Irish style.

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