Hello! My friend and I are planning on going to Dublin for the St. Patrick's day festivities. Has anyone ever attended? It looks like its a 4 day event March 14- March 17, any advice?? Also is it really 4 days? I went to the San Fermin festival this year and everyday was worth with- do you think this would be the same? Or should we just do 2 days of the festival and use the other days for side trips (Scotland and Northern Ireland) ? Thank you!!
I've been to Ireland several times, but never over St Patrick's Day, so I can't speak to that. What I can tell you is that it is impossible to take a "side trip" to Scotland in a day - or even two. You could take a day trip to Belfast by train pretty easily, but that's about it, outside of the commonly suggested day trips to Newgrange or Glendalough.
I was told several times while in Ireland that St. Patrick's festivities last over several days - even as much as a week. Sounds like fun. Make reservations well in advance, I'm sure Dublin will be packed. There are lovely day trips from Dublin - or even go up to Belfast for a day - but there is really a lot to see and do right in Dublin.
Dublin is packed on St. Patrick's day. The parade is fun and the pubs get completely jammed. It is an experience. In the evening, it gets a little too crazy on this day. I wouldn't really consider it a 4 day event, but there is a ton to do in Dublin for 4 days.
A lot of people actually like to leave Dublin on that day. One year I went to Dingle for St. Patricks day and it was a blast. A small town parade, then everyone hits the pubs with lots of music. It was great fun.
I went to Ireland this past St. Patricks day but did not go to Dublin for the festivities. I am sure it will be a heck of a time! I would HIGHLY recommend taking a couple of days and seeing the North, especially Derry. My husband is from Derry City and going there for the first time this past March was amazing! As with most places in Ireland there is an abundance of history and it is such a charming city. The coastal drive to the Giants Causeway is gorgeous. On the way you can stop at the ruins of Dunluce Castle and at Downhill Beach which is beautiful (and if you are a Game of Thrones Fan, they did some filming there :) ). There is also the Bushmills Distillery before the Causeway and a bit past the Causeway is a the Rope Bridge which was really neat! Hope you enjoy your trip and hope I have put the bug in your ear to take a peak into the North!
It doesn't go on for days and days unless it falls over a weekend and even for that the festival is really just the day. The rest is more drunk'n pre-partying happening throughout the city in pubs (mostly by tourist in temple bar). The city center on the day is very hard to get in and out of due to the parade.