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Travel bucket list idea:

Last updated: 30 July, 2023
Expert travel writer: Nicola Brady

Dublin’s largest international export, this festival from 14-18 March celebrates the arrival of Christianity to Ireland and raises Irish flags the world over. A massive parade on 17 March aims to showcase the talent and skills of Irish people of every age and background and project it onto a world stage.

The only Irish national holiday celebrated globally, if you can handle the crowds, this is a must-do – at least once.

Logistics

Price: Free
Minimum age: Any
Age suitable: 8+
Frequency: annually
When: 14-18 March
Duration: 5 days

Getting there & doing it

The parade meanders through Dublin city centre, up O’Connell and Grafton Streets. The roads throng with crowds, making travel through Dublin difficult; arrive three hours early to use public transport and get to the front of the parade – otherwise book a top floor seat/hotel room along the parade route so you can watch in quiet calm.

The best vantage points for the parade are restaurants or bars on Lord Edward Street near Dublin Castle, and Temple Bar. Eat well first – shops and restaurants are too busy for sit down dining and have big queues.

Or avoid the jostling crowds and book grandstand seating for the parade and other St. Patrick’s Day events on the festival website.

When to do it

The parade is always held on St Patrick’s Day, 17 March, but the festivities continue for five days between 14-18 March.

Destination guides

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Destination guides including or relevant to this experience

Dublin

County Dublin, Ireland

A bridge and houses reflecting in the River Liffey in the evening light

Medieval history, literature, art and culture marry epic nightlife and dining in a charming urban village.