This week we will commemorate Ireland's patron saint, but rest assured we are not alone in our celebrations. St. Patrick’s Day is celebrated all around the world, in over 190 countries, the obvious places being Ireland, the US, Canada and Australia!
With New York being the first additional place to celebrate St. Patrick's Day in 1762 and Ireland being its origins, the folks over at Irishshop.com were interested to see how the rest of the world celebrated St Patrick’s Day.
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Did you know Savannah, Georgia hosts the second biggest St. Patrick's Day Parade in the United States?
The following countries are worth considering to celebrate St Patrick's Day, if freezing your behind off on O’Connell Street or 5th Avenue while waiting for the parade, isn’t your idea of fun.
Singapore is definitely a place that anyone would love for St. Patrick's Day. Each year the St. Patrick's society of Singapore organizes an event in the Shangri-La hotel offering free-flowing wine, beer, and live music.
If the Shangri-La is a little out of your budget, no sweat. Singaporeans love to celebrate on the 17th. You will find the Singapore river dyed green and a parade that is led by a Harley Davidson convoy.
Cabo Roig, Spain
The picturesque town of Cabo Roig Spain hosts the largest St. Patrick's Day parade in Spain. The bars and restaurants don their best green decor, and host Irish entertainment with a Spanish twist.
Fancy a bit of Irish Dancing or perhaps flamenco on Paddy’s Day? Well in Cabo Roig, you can have both! Celebrations spill over well into the night with a fireworks display to finish off the festivities.
In 2010 Ghana began to celebrate St. Patricks Day making it the newest official celebration of the 17th. Forget the rain, Accra in Ghana celebrate St Patrick's Day in the relaxing ocean retreat sipping cocktails and enjoying the nice sea breeze!
Irish aid workers will use the funds raised to help bring water to rural villages. The main culinary delicacy paying homage to St. Patrick in Ghana is the “grilled beef steak marinated in whiskey”!
The beautiful Emerald Isle of Caribbean Island is home to just 5,000 people. Montserrat is the only country in the world aside from Ireland where St. Patrick’s Day is declared a public holiday. The 17th of March is so widely celebrated in Montserrat to pay homage to its Afro-Irish culture.
In the 1600s many Irish were shipped to Montserrat against their will and there they stayed. The tiny Caribbean island is drenched in history and folklore just like its Irish counterpart. On the 17th you can sing, dance, drink green beer as well as traditional rum punch. Many of the locals will be wearing traditional dress with green being the dominant color.
The INJ (Irish Network Japan) set up the first St. Patricks Day parade in 1992. Since then the parade has shown that the people of Tokyo love a bit of Irish.
Last year the parade in Omotesando had over 15,000 participants with over 50,000 spectators. Everyone comes out in their best green clothing they can find. The parade is filled with Irish dancers, bagpipes and “Voucher Girls”. Not surprisingly these are a main highlight as these pretty Japanese girls carry vouchers for free booze.
Ever felt that one day of drinking and eating wasn’t enough for St Patricks Day? Well in Florence you can celebrate from the 17th right up until the 22nd at the Irish Festival or “Festa Irelandes” as it is called in Florence, Italy.
In honour of good ol’ St. Patrick himself, you can celebrate days of live music, food and drink. If you are looking for a truly Irish-Italian experience get yourself to Finnegan's bar.
But are they better than Ireland?
There might be places around the world that could possibly sound better than Ireland to celebrate St. Patrick's Day, but can they beat the authenticity and experience of celebrating it in Ireland?
It cannot be denied that on St. Patrick's Day everyone feels a little bit Irish, but think about it is there anywhere in the world you rather be than on the beautiful Emerald Isle?
So What Does Ireland Feel Like On St. Patrick's Day?
The craic being absolute 90 (so they say), everyone is dressed in their best greens with shamrocks pinned to their coats. Find yourself sitting in a small cozy pub drinking the finest pint of Guinness you have ever tasted, music and song flowing through the air, bodhráns, Irish dancers and the Wolfe Tones being sung by crowds of proud Irish as if their songs were the National Anthem.
It’s no wonder everyone wants to be a little bit Irish on the 17th!
It will resonate with you that yes other countries may be sunny and warm, they may have lots of their own traditions but there really is nowhere like Ireland for St. Patrick’s Day.
How Irish Are You?
A big thank you to the good folks at the Irish Shop for putting together this little round up of Irish celebrations around the world.
They have a fun quiz on their site asking "How Irish Are You?", and I am happy to report I am officially 100% Irish. I passed with flying colors, or should I say with flying green colors.
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Thanks for following my recipes and ramblings.
Slán agus beannacht,
(Goodbye and blessings)
Mairéad -Irish American Mom
Pronunciation - slawn ah-gus ban-ock-th
Mairéad - rhymes with parade
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