Green Across the Globe— 7 Unique St. Patrick’s Day 2023 Celebrations and Events Around the World
From guzzling a couple of beers in an Irish pub decked out in green St. Patrick’s Day decorations to feasting on the delicious, traditional meal of corned beef and cabbage, St. Patrick’s Day is a fun and festive day for people all over the world, whether you were blessed with the luck of the Irish or not.
Read on to learn more about the origins of St. Patrick’s Day and how the holiday is celebrated across the globe.
What is St. Patrick’s Day?
Today, St. Patrick’s Day is a well-known Irish holiday celebrated all over the world.
Although the holiday’s roots are religious, over time, the holiday has morphed into a celebration of Irish culture that people of all religions and backgrounds can be a part of.
The holiday is often associated with the color green, leprechauns, shamrocks and four-leaf clovers, pots of gold, and the luck of the Irish.
It is often celebrated in the forms of wearing green, feasting on traditional Irish foods, listening to Irish music, hosting vibrant parades and social events, partying, drinking, and encouraging children to be on the lookout for mischievous, little, bearded men from Irish folklore, also known as leprechauns.
When Is St. Patrick’s Day 2023?
St. Patrick’s Day is on March 17 every year. This year, in 2023, St. Patrick’s Day is on a Friday.
Why Do We Celebrate St. Patrick’s Day?
The celebration of St. Patrick’s Day originally began as a religious holiday with the purpose of honoring Saint Patrick, the saint associated with the arrival of Christianity in Ireland.
The day of March 17 marks the death of St. Patrick and was made an official holiday in the 17th century by the Catholic Church, as well as an official public holiday in Ireland in 1903.
St. Patrick’s Day, also known as The Feast of St. Patrick, has historically been celebrated through indulgence with sermons, drinking, and feasting, as Catholic Lent restrictions were lifted just for this day.
This is why St. Patrick’s Day is still heavily associated with feasts and alcohol consumption today—Although, during a short period from 1903 to 1970 in Ireland, it was considered a dry, religious holiday in which all pubs were closed.
7 Shamrockin’ St. Patrick’s Day Events Around the World
1. Dublin, Ireland (of course!)
How could we not include the larger-than-life celebrations that commence in the capital city of Ireland, the country that created this festive holiday?
Every year, Dublin is host to a famous four-day festival full of live music, food, drinks, and entertainment in honor of St. Patrick’s Day.
However, the main event of this festival is a parade that takes place on the holiday. The parade marches proudly through the heart of the city of Dublin on St. Patrick’s Day, featuring an impressive line-up of local and national bands, thrilling performances, and a variety of festive and fantastical creations.
2. Chicago, United States
Ireland is not the only place where St. Patrick’s Day is celebrated intensely.
The city of Chicago has been dying the Chicago River an emerald green just for St. Paddy’s Day for more than 60 years.
On the Saturday before the holiday, spectators gather to witness the pouring of “leprechaun magic” into the river, first turning it orange before deepening into an emerald green reminiscent of the rolling hills of Ireland.
3. Buenos Aires, Argentina
The capital city of Buenos Aires, Argentina hosts the largest St. Patrick’s Day celebration in all of South America.
Argentina’s annual St. Patrick’s Day parade highlights Irish culture and folklore with the inclusion of fairies, elves, and Irish dancers.
Beyond the dazzling parade that is held for St. Patrick’s Day, this celebration also features an annual street party in the center of the city, complete with plenty of music and dancing.
The entertainment, of course, also revolves around Irish culture. Irish-inspired rock band groups such as The Kilt and Tartan Army perform, as well as Celtic Argentina, the largest Irish dance school in Argentina and one of the largest in South America.
4. Sydney, Australia
St. Patrick’s Day is taken very seriously in Sydney.
In fact, since the launch of the Global Greening initiative in 2010, the famous Sydney Opera House gleams gorgeously in green every year in tribute to St. Patrick’s Day.
The 2010 Global Greening initiative invited the world to participate in St. Patrick’s Day by lighting up famous landmarks in green.
Since then, the initiative has only grown stronger and more popular with other famous landmarks such as the London Eye, the Great Wall of China, Niagara Falls, and the Leaning Tower of Pisa going green in the spirit of St. Patrick’s Day.
5. Auckland, New Zealand
Auckland, New Zealand is another place that likes to quite literally go green for St. Patrick’s Day.
Its 1,076-foot Sky Tower is lit up in Gaelic green every year in honor of the holiday.
Additionally, Auckland hosts a St. Patrick's Day parade featuring festive entertainers donning the Irish flag colors of orange and green alongside Irish banners, floats, dancers, and bands.
New Zealand’s Irish Society also puts on a Fair Day including all-day activities and attractions such as face painting, kids’ rides, food stands, a bar, Irish music and dancing, and even Gaelic football.
6. Toronto, Ontario, Canada
For more than 150 years, Toronto has been home to one of the largest St. Patrick’s Day parades in not only North America, but in the world.
In fact, over a half-million spectators gather to view this procession that starts from Bloor and St. George and finishes up on Queen Street at Nathan Philips Square.
However, the party doesn’t have to stop there. After the parade, there are plenty of bars, restaurants, Irish pubs, and venues that host special events for St. Patrick’s Day where you can keep the party going.
7. London, UK
Considering the UK’s proximity to the motherland of St. Patrick’s Day, it should come as no surprise that the Irish holiday is beloved by the Brits.
An enormous celebration, attracting more than 150,000 party-goers, is held every year in London—Complete with a stunning St. Patrick’s Day parade, Irish song and dance, music, culture and arts, an artisan Irish food market, ceilidhs, and comedy and film festivals.
Additionally, the celebration features London Irish sports clubs, dance schools, marching bands, and elaborate displays and ceremonies.
Search for Some St. Patrick’s Day Events Near You
Don’t miss out on all of the Celtic-inspired celebrations near you. Everyone could use a little luck of the Irish in their lives.
Click here to see some of the events that are going on in your country.
Leprechaun-Approved St. Patrick’s Day Quotes and Sayings
With that, I’ll leave you with some golden St. Patrick’s Day quotes and expressions:
This translates to “Health” in Gaelic and is commonly used as “Cheers” while drinking or making toasts.
"Erin go Bragh"
Translation: Ireland Forever
"May your blessings outnumber the shamrocks that grow, and may trouble avoid you wherever you go."
“Kiss me, I’m Irish”
"May luck be your friend in whatever you do, and may trouble be always a stranger to you."
"A best friend is like a four-leaf clover: hard to find and lucky to have."
"May the winds of fortune sail you, may you sail a gentle sea, may it always be the other guy who says 'This drink's on me!"
"Bless your little Irish heart and every other Irish part."
"Wherever you go and whatever you do, may the luck of the Irish be there with you."
Happy St. Patrick’s Day!