With Australia now boasting the third largest population of Irish migrants in the world, the St Patrick’s Day festivities continue to grow. This therefore means a whole lot of green and a whole lot of Guinness going down. This year, we’ve scouted out some of the best craic happenings in a city near you. Here’s where to party around Australia this St Patrick’s Day.
Adelaide Oval, Adelaide
Come Saturday, March 17, Adelaide Oval will be transformed into an oasis of emerald, for its rollicking annual St Patrick’s Day fiesta. The all-ages celebrations have something to tickle everyone’s fancy. Here, there’s more food, drink and entertainment than you could poke a leprechaun at. Pulling together an array of authentic Irish fare, no one will go hungry. Just choose from Guinness on tap and a range of specialty Jameson cocktails. There’s also a solid lineup of artists to get you grooving through the day. There’s even pipers, dance groups and traditional Irish dancing classes, if you’re feeling inspired to have a crack yourself.
St Patrick’s Day WA Parade And Family Fun Day, Perth
The St Patrick’s Day WA Parade and Family Fun Day returns this Saturday to paint the streets of Leederville green, in honour of all things Irish. Now in its sixth year, the event features a morning street parade of floats, marching bands and walking groups. Expect a jam-packed program of fun to tempt just about everyone. You’ll encounter live entertainment, activities and food stalls that’ll hook you up with authentic Irish fare. Did we mention there’s also a massive bar where the Guinness will be flowing for a wee $8 a pint?
Brisbane Irish Festival, Brisbane
This Saturday, the Brisbane Irish Festival hits the streets of the CBD, to kick-start what’s long been the city’s heftiest annual St Patrick’s Day celebration. 20,000 punters are expected to watch the launch of the morning street parade. It’s here you’ll catch the pilgrimage of floats, performers and stunning visual displays. Afterwards, the fun continues with a big al fresco picnic in the City’s Botanic Gardens. Spend the day chowing down on tasty Irish food, sipping Guinness and browsing artisan wares from over 30 specialty stalls. Live tunes from band Celtic Fusions might even inspire you to do some jigging of your own.
Mercantile Hotel, Sydney
With over 100 years under its belt, Sydney’s Mercantile Hotel claims the title of Australia’s oldest Irish pub…and that means a whole lot of practice hosting very cheery St Patrick’s Day festivities. The revelry kicks off Friday afternoon, with live Irish tunes and plenty of Guinness, while Saturday morning fires up with even more merriness for The Mercantile’s annual St Paddy’s breakfast. Just be sure to save some energy for the rest of the day. This year, the celebrations will spill out onto George Street for a full-on street party, complete with food stalls, pop-up bars, roving entertainment and a live music program that includes Irish favourites like Shindig and Shaylee Wilde.
Bridie O’Reilly’s South Yarra, Melbourne
As one of Melbourne’s most iconic Irish pubs, Bridie O’Reilly’s sure knows how to put on a solid show for St Patrick’s Day. And with this year promising very balmy temperatures, the sprawling street-side beer garden is bound to be one of the most happening spots in town. From 10am you can roll in for a ‘full Irish’ brekkie matched with a pint of Guinness for $25. However, you’ll want to book a table in advance. After that, it’s Irish food specials all day long, plus live entertainment from the likes of Starhorse, John Kendall and Adam12.