PHOTO: London St. Patrick's Day reveler. (photo via Flickr/Aurelien Guichard)
Spending St. Patrick’s Day in Ireland sits near the top of many bucket lists, with thousands of revelers arriving each year to celebrate the holiday in its ancestral home.
What if you can’t make it to the Emerald Isle? Well, there’s good news, because a handful of places around the world are known for throwing a party fun enough to rival Dublin itself.
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Montserrat was the landing spot for thousands of Irish during the 16th century, and those people brought their traditions with them, many of which survive to this day. In fact, this tiny Caribbean island is the only other place in the world besides Ireland that honors St. Patrick’s Day as an official public holiday.
This means that the locals don’t have to call in sick to spend all day celebrating, and you’ll have the time of your life if you decide to join them in the Caribbean sunshine. The festivities go on for a week and are also tied in with the commemoration of a historic slave rebellion.
Chicago, Boston, and New York, USA
These are the big three as far as American St. Patrick’s Day parties are concerned, and you won’t go wrong choosing to let loose in any of these metropolises.
Chicago is famous for dyeing its downtown river green, New York holds the biggest St. Patrick’s Day parade in the country and Boston is home to a massive percentage of citizens with Irish descent. In addition to parades and blocks of street revelry, you will find plenty of Irish cultural activities going on in all three locales.
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Buenos Aires, Argentina
The capital of Argentina has long been known as a hotbed for St. Patrick’s Day (or as it’s known locally, el Dia de San Patricio). That means fun parades, concerts and plenty of other ‘green’ goings-on leading up to the big day.
Argentina is another country that many Irish immigrated to, and today the bevy of Irish pubs throughout the city all serve as a reminder of that history while serving up plenty of Guinness come March 17th.
Cabo Roig, Spain
A popular spot for Irish vacationers and expats alike, Cabo Roig throws the largest St. Patrick’s Day parade in all of Spain. The procession typically attracts over 10,000 revelers and includes Irish dancers, floats and even an appearance from St. Patrick himself.
As far as the parade after-party is concerned, Cabo Roig is well stocked with Irish pubs.
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Savannah, Georgia, USA
This coastal city’s population swells on March 17th each year, as parades and parties take over the streets of this graceful Southern Belle of a town.
They have been celebrating the holiday here for nearly 200 years, and each year the word seems to get out to more and more people that Savannah offers a truly special Southern St. Patrick’s Day experience.
Auckland, New Zealand
Home to a festival that takes place before the holiday itself, New Zealand’s largest city is the perfect place to do St. Patrick’s Day ‘Down Under’. During the pre-Patty’s Day festival, you’ll find fairs, parades, Gaelic sporting competitions and even an Irish-themed gala ball. It all goes down under the green glow of the city’s iconic Sky Tower.
Then, on the day itself, the city stays abuzz with plenty of lively pubs and bars full of merrymakers.