Travel

An International St. Patrick’s Day

Ireland’s most famous feast day is just around the corner, and, just like the Irish themselves, St.Patrick’s Day celebrations can be found in all corners of the globe.

Here’s how other countries celebrate this famous irish holiday.

Chicago, USA

Every year, nearly 400,000 spectators gather at the Chicago River in Chicago Illinois to watch the water turn green, in one of the most well known international St.Patrick’s Day celebrations. Often overshadowed by its more famous sister city New York, Chicago holds an impressive festival of its own.

If you fancy catching the parade, be in the city at least an hour before its start time at noon, to watch a whole host of Irish dancers, singers, musicians, and artistic floats march from Balbo to Monroe Drive.

Buenos Aires, Argentina

Buenos Aires is home to the biggest St. Patrick’s Day parade in all of South America, with just over half a million Irish people living there. After the 3 pm parade, which winds through many streets in the capital, festival goers gather at Plaza San Martín where an annual street party is held to celebrate both Irish and Argentian music and dance.

The capital is also home to plenty of Irish pubs, who bring that ‘céád míle fáilte’ feeling to the celebration every year.

Montserrat, The Caribbean

The celebrations held in Montserrat are very different from the rest of this list. It is the only country outside of Ireland to treat the day as a national holiday, and it coincides with a whole week of festivities, but it’s not necessarily the Irish spirit they’re celebrating.

In 1768 freedom fighters in Montserrat led an uprising against the Irish plantation owners that had settled in their country and forced them into slavery. The week-long celebrations are for the country’s independence, and while many elements of Irish dance and culture are embraced as part of the St. Patrick’s Day fun, the overarching theme is one of resistance and remembrance.

The main events of Montserrat’s celebrations include the Masquerade, where Montserratians dress in colourful clothes to dance and sing, and it’s 1pm parade in Salem, one of it’s largest towns.

Whether you stay at home or decide to travel far and wide, bringing together people, Irish culture and craic are definitely on the St. Patrick’s Day to-do list.