St Patrick's Day in London

Singing, dancing, a parade and a pint or two: the Irish have always known how to party...

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© James O.Jenkins
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© Alys Tomlinson
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© Alys Tomlinson
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© Alys Tomlinson

If anyone knows how to party, it's the Irish, and for St Patrick's Day (Tuesday March 17 2015) they do it bigger and better than ever. On the Sunday before the big day (Sunday March 15) follow the St Paddy's Day Parade floats and marching band, then head to Trafalgar Square for a whole load o' craic at the annual festival. There'll be dancing, singing, Irish food, comedy and Gaelic-themed entertainment for the kids. Be sure to go green this March.

St Patrick's Day: what's the craic?

St Patrick's Day (Tuesday March 17) is a day dedicated to the Patron Saint of Ireland. Along with the religious aspects of the Saint's day, the festival is traditionally celebrated with 'wearing of the green' and shamrocks. The biggest of the festivities take place in Ireland but St Patrick's Day is widely celebrated by Irish ex-pats around the world. London has marked the day with public celebrations since 2002 and these celebrations attract huge crowds of revellers.

Join in the St Paddy's Day 2015 fun

St Patrick's Day Parade and Festival

Critics' choice

The Irish are ace at partying. So good, in fact, they even have a special untranslatable phrase – the craic – to describe their unique brand of conviviality. They manage to have a brilliant time in the most unpromising locations – your typical Irish church hall is gloomier than Eeyore. So, with Trafalgar Square as the setting for London’s official bash in celebration of their patron saint, a blast is pretty much guaranteed.

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Trafalgar Square Sunday March 15 2015 Free

Lovely Day for a Guinness

In February The Museum of Brands, Packaging and Advertising launched a series of late openings (on the second Friday of each month). For the March edition (Friday 13) the museum will be celebrating St Patrick's Day early.  Expect a free drink on arrival, themed cocktails, live entertainment, a luck o' the Irish treasure hunt and ceilidh music to dance to. ​

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Museum of Brands, Packaging & Advertising Friday March 13 2015

St Patrick's Day Céili

Celebrate St Patrick's Day in traditionally rowdy Irish style at this céili in Greenwich's art deco Borough Hall. An expert caller will guide you through the steps and live music comes from Threepenny Bit. The mixture of traditional and original tunes promises to be lively enough to get everybody dancing, whatever their experience level.

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Greenwich Dance Saturday March 14 2015

St Patrick's Night Party at The View from The Shard

Channel the spirit of the Emerald Isle this Paddy's Day at this silent disco with a spectacular view. Partygoers will be treated to a Jameson Irish Whiskey with ginger and lime on arrival, and there'll be Guinness on tap at the bar as tradition would dictate. Once the headphones are on there'll be three channels of music to choose from, one of which playing only Irish, folk and ceilidh music.

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The View from the Shard Tuesday March 17 2015 - Wednesday March 18 2015

Dropkick Murphys

The Boston-Irish Celtic hardcore band jet across the Atlantic for a big gig in the week of St Patrick's Day.

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O2 Academy Brixton Saturday March 21 2015

Sink a pint at London's best Irish pubs

Auld Shillelagh

Known for its exceptional Guinness, always poured with care, and occasional raucous entertainment. It's the kind of pub where the wine list runs to 'red or white', and where the staff are so matey and hospitable that they'll offer to bring your Guinness over to your table rather than have you hang around at the bar and wait for it to reach perfection.

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Stamford Hill

Cow

A cosy slice of (faux-)Irish pubbery in hip Notting Hill known for its good oysters and Guinness. The Cow is a rural Irish pub as imagined by Disney – all cutesy cottage-style net curtains, Guinness advertising and glossy 1950s Technicolor paintwork.

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Westbourne Park

Harp

As the first London venue to win the Camra National Pub of the Year accolade, this diminutive Covent Garden pub pumps eight real ales and has casks of scrumpy behind the bar. Irish landlady too.

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Leicester Square

Quinn's

With Miles Davis on the stereo and a stream of banter from two generations of Quinns behind the bar, this Irish boozer manages to feel like a real sanctuary from the outside world. There’s a rotating selection of guest ales, and one of the longest lists of Belgian and German bottled beers you'll find in the capital (stored in a padlocked fridge beside the bar).

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See more great Irish pubs in London

Comments

2 comments
Sean G
Sean G

You stated above "Follow the St Paddy's Day Parade floats and marching band, which begins in Piccadilly at 2pm". The parade started at 12pm, so I and many others missed it because you got it wrong. Thanks!