Over 100 years ago, Ireland recognized St. Patrick's Day as an official holiday. But in the past decade, it has became a wild celebration of heritage, culture and booze.The Irish take no prisoners when it comes to good St. Patties ... Nearly every major city in Ireland holds their own festival with pubs full of green beer, streets full of green people, and maybe even a leprechaun or two. Outside of Dublin, the largest celebration of the holiday is in a town called Downpatrick, Ireland, believed to be where Saint Patrick is buried. The town's week long festival is held in honor of him as the 30,000 visitors head to the streets and parade their way down with over 80 floats.
The United States
Ireland is not the only place where pubs are packed, celebrations take over and the luck of the Irish celebrates their culture. In nearly every household, cities small and large, schools, libraries and even post offices you'll find Americans taking pride in their Irish heritage. At most schools and cafes, bagels are dyed green and the Irish jig is danced around as bagpipers play until dusk. Keg after keg of green beer is sucked back by jolly drinkers across the nation. Fountains are dyed green - even the Chicago River is transformed into a emerald behemoth for the day.
Canada and the United States are known for wearing green on this religious day of St. Patrick. The longest running parade in North America hails from Montreal, where it has been celebrated since 1824. Parades and banquets are held in celebration of the holiday and the locals toast after the parade in honor of St. Patrick. In Ottawa, a week long parade marches through allowing visitors to enjoy poetry, Irish music, sport and the Great Irish Dance Party.
Known for their rowdy pub culture, England bares all when it comes to celebrations. In Manchester, parades and celebrations go on for nearly two weeks before St. Patrick's Day. The Scots know how to party, as well as the Edinburgh St. Patrick's Day Festival takes over the classic city. Pints of Guinness are poured and many learn the Irish jig, while listening to Irish poetry.
New Zealanders owe many thanks to the Irish for the religious holiday. As they wear the traditional kelly green and drink from morning to morning, the Irish also made a great impact on the locals. Large amount of Irish immigrants reside in New Zealand who can celebrate St. Patrick's Day like it's their own holiday. The Irish culture shows it's true green colors on this day as they promote their heritage.
Japan, always eager to embrace western culture into their own, has recently adopted Irish pride and started celebrating St. Patricks day. On St. Patrick's Day in nearly 10 cities including Tokyo, people dig out their green sweaters and giant leprechaun suits to parade through the streets. Japan is not typically associated with Irish heritage, but throughout the entire month of March people are gripped across the country by that old St. Patricks fever.
In Oslo the St. Patrick's Day parade is lively and celebrated. Groups dancing jigs, St. Patricks himself in a horse and cart, and live music wend their way through the cobbled streets hoisting Irish flags and flashing smiles all around. It is a colorful opportunity to get out and enjoy a community celebration. But remember a jacket! While the rest of us regard St. Patricks as a springtime holiday, March is still very cold Norway.
The first St. Patricks Day parade in this nations history took place in 1993, and thousands of Russians flocked to Moscow to witness the cultural event. Since then the parade has become bigger, more intricate, and wilder every single year. Moscow police, firefighters and locals all contribute floats and huge Irish Greyhounds promenade amongst them.
In Buenos Aires, Argentinians have taken the PARTY in St. Patricks to a new level! Since March is a warm month throughout the country, people take to dancing and drinking in the streets. In downtown, there are several Irish pubs that attract tens of thousands of tourists and locals looking to joyfully honor the Irish culture and all its glory.