We look at the Top 5 Things to do in the West of Ireland this St Patrick’s weekend.
1. Sunrise and Pipe Bands (17th March)
Achill Island is famous for it’s pipe bands and it’s sunrise tradition. The pipe bands begin to play at sunrise on Achill and will march and perform until sunset.
This schedule allows visitors and spectators to join the bands for a while and then to explore Achill’s other attractions – for the active visitor these include watersports, golf or hillwalking, while for the more relaxed visitor there are always the restaurants and bars to enjoy.
This year the Dooagh Pipe Band are celebrating a special one, this marks their 70th St Patrick’s Day parade. >> AchillTourism.com
2. Galway’s St Patrick’s Day Parade (17th March)
2017 marks the 114th anniversary of the Galway St Patrick’s Day Parade; world renowned for its eclectic entries, and the beauty and colour of both the parade and the spectators who line the route.The parade will come to a grand finalé with local heroes Macnas presenting their youth ensemble before Gamelan na Gaillimhe chime the end of the parade with their Indonesian gongs.. Galway’s Parade will highlight the city and region’s rich cultural and highly creative activity in preparation for Galway’s European Capital for Culture tenure in 2020. The Parade will start at 11.30am and finish at approximately 1.00pm.
After the parade visit Woodquay square for displays and workshops with a mix of martial arts, movement and dance. >> galwaytourism.ie
3. May The Road Rise To Meet You (17th March)
St. Patrick’s Day, with a difference in South Sligo as athletes will once again take to the roads for the 44th Tubbercurry St. Patrick’s Day 10K Road Race.
The first ever Tubbercurry 10K road race was planned for St. Stephen’s Day but was postponed due to snow and ice. It was rescheduled for St. Patrick’s Day 1973 and ever since it has become an annual fixture in the running calendar.
After the event runners and spectators alike mingle in the warmth of the family run Killoran’s Bar & Restaurant, Tubbercurry. >> southsligoac.net
4. Go Native (17th March)
Since 2005, the people of Burtonport, Co Donegal and surrounding areas have hosted a celebration of Irish culture on St Patrick’s day.
A formal warning has been issued to all Leprechauns in the area to please stay away from the Burtonport Old Railway Walk in the coming days.
Word has it that a Leprechaun catcher is at work at the minute and has already caught a dozen leprechauns which he has restricted to a cage in a bid to limit their mischief over the run up St Patrick’s day.
Organisers encourage a ‘Bring and Share’ event where everyone brings along food to share on the day. Experience home baking, the Irish language, traditional dance, music, food, games and a warm welcome. >> More on their Facebook Page here
5. Join Ireland’s shortest St Patrick’s Day parade, lasting 32 seconds, in County Clare
Apparently the St Patrick’s Day Parade in Carrigaholt, Co Clare is Ireland’s shortest. Locals Becky O’Farrell and Lorraine Morrissey organise and participate in the parade every March 17.
The 2016 St Patrick’s Day parade was the longest yet, at 25ft, and took 32 seconds in total. Don’t believe us? Watch the video.