We’re breaking out a bunch of daffodils and championing all things Welsh. Here’s how to find a little pocket of Cymru in the city. Dydd Gŵyl Dewi Hapus!
Ireland and Scotland are world-famous for their hooch, but have you ever tried a Welsh whisky? At the Penderyn Distillery Masterclass with Welsh Food Pairing, you can spend your evening trying five golden single malt whiskies distilled in the Brecon Beacons. Forbes whisky writer Felipe Schrieberg will show you how to find your whisky nose while you munch on specially matched Welsh snacks. London Welsh Centre. Russell Square tube. Wed Feb 27. £40, book in advance.
If your knowledge of Welsh music begins with Catatonia and ends with Goldie Lookin Chain, let Cymru show you what you’ve been missing. At St David’s Day Takeover with Horizons, Welsh indie talent will be setting up shop on three floors of a Farringdon pub for seven-and-a-half hours of gigs. Make sure you’re not stranded in the bar queue for Adwaith, a Carmarthen-based trio whose floaty post-punk tunes are delivered in their native tongue. The Betsey Trotwood. Farringdon tube. Fri Mar 1. Free, register in advance.
Oh, cheeky night out in Cardiff, is it? You needn’t make the Megabus schlep over the Severn Bridge. The mighty Clwb Ifor Bach (aka Welsh Club) is bringing Welsh music to the big smoke. Look out for rock duo Alffa, whose track ‘Gwenwyn’ was the first Welsh-language song to get 1 million plays on Spotify. The Lexington. Angel tube. Wed Feb 27. £7.70.
Know your Alun Wyn Jones from your Wyn Jones, and your 22 from your number 8? The Guinness Six Nations Rugby Pub Quiz at Flat Iron Square should be up (and under) your street. What’s more, a ticket gets you a free pint of Guinness, so it’s worth heading along for a try even if your rugby knowledge will keep you in the sin bin. Flat Iron Square. Borough tube. Thu Feb 28. £5 per person, book in advance.
5 Eat this
There’s more to Wales than rarebit (aka cheese on toast) and you can unlock the lush culinary side to the Celtic nation at Borough Market’s two-day Welsh celebrations. Stick around for a performance from Borough Welsh Choir and cookery demonstrations with ‘GBBO’ semi-finalist Beca Lyne-Pirkis. Traders will be flogging all sorts of goodies, like traditional Welsh cakes, lamb, gin and farmhouse cheeses. Tidy. Borough Market. London Bridge tube. Thu Feb 28-Fri Mar 1. Free entry.
Catch a screening of director Cian Llewellyn’s ‘The Outing’, based on one of Dylan Thomas’s lesser-known short stories about a group of old friends on a bus going away to a pub for a lads’ weekend in Wales. After the screening, stick around and abate your hiraeth (homesickness) with poetry readings and music by Ceri James. Follow that with a swift pint or two around the corner at The Half Moon Wetherspoon pub, which used to be a Welsh chapel. Iechyd da! Genesis Cinema. Stepney Green tube. Wed Feb 27. Free, but booking required.
7 Do this
The daffodil is the national flower of Wales, and hosts of those sunny foghorns get loud and proud in March. For some daff action, visit Osterley Park and House. For more central daffodils (that are free to see) go to St James’s Park. If you’re after an educational stroll, join the St David’s Day Walk to learn about the contributions the Welsh have made to London’s history. It takes place after the day, but the stories will be just as colourful. Osterley Park and House. Osterley tube. Open daily. £12. St James’s Park. Green Park tube. Open daily. Free. St David’s Day walk, meet at the Tower of London. Tower Bridge tube. Mar 9. £8, book in advance.
To prolong the St David’s Day celebrations, gather a scrum of your mates and head down to the Six Nations screening at Brixton Jamm’s heated outdoor area and bar for the motherland’s clash with Scotland. Even if oval-shaped balls aren’t your thing, the packed crowd’s rendition of ‘Hen Wlad Fy Nhadau’ (or ‘Land of My Fathers’ for the non-Welsh speakers) before kick-off will have you welling up.