posted on March 13th, 2024

Family Events for St. Patrick’s Day


St. Patrick’s Day in Northern Ireland isn’t just a holiday; it’s a cultural extravaganza filled with rich traditions, lively festivities, and historical significance. Whether you’re looking to immerse yourself in the spirit of the occasion or a visitor eager to experience the unique charm of Northern Ireland, there’s something for everyone to enjoy. Here’s a curated list of the best activities to make the most out of this spirited celebration.

St. Patrick’s Day Music Weekend: Kick off the festivities with three days of concerts, céilís, and Irish dancing. Bagpipes and highland dancers will take centre stage, adding a touch of tradition to the vibrant atmosphere. The craic begins on March 15th, setting the tone for an unforgettable weekend.

Annual Parade: Join the sea of colour as the annual parade winds its way through the streets of Belfast on March 17th. Starting from Belfast City Hall at 1:30pm, the parade features dance troupes, community groups, and musicians, showcasing a multi-cultural celebration of people, place, and planet.


Festival Village: Head to Cathedral Gardens, beside St. Anne’s Cathedral to experience a festival village like no other. Enjoy céilí workshops, family-friendly activities, and immerse yourself in the lively ambiance of St. Patrick’s Day.Ticketed Performances: Treat yourself to ticketed performances featuring renowned artists like Anúna and Frankie Gavin and Dé Dannan. From vocal groups to fiddle players, these performances promise to captivate audiences with their mesmerising talent.

Free Events for Families: Make it a day to remember with free events at Number 2 Royal Avenue. From art workshops to dance performances, there’s something for the whole family to enjoy on March 17th.

St. George’s Market: Don’t miss the lunch-time performances by musicians from Ards Comhaltas Ceoltoiri Eireann on March 16th and 17th. Experience the lively atmosphere of one of Belfast’s most iconic markets as you soak in the sounds of traditional Irish music.

Trad Trail: Embark on a week-long Trad Trail from March 10th, showcasing free music performances in bars, restaurants, hotels, and visitor attractions across the city. Immerse yourself in the sounds of traditional Irish music as you explore Belfast’s vibrant cultural scene.

Ulster Folk Museum: Enjoy a traditional St. Patrick’s Day at Ulster Folk Museum on 17th and 18th March with activities including listening to traditional music, watching Irish dancers, craft stations with live demonstrations, and even the opportunity to taste traditional food and drink with a special themed menu in the Tearoom for the occasion.

Down Arts Centre: If you’re interested in the Arts, head to Down Arts Centre on 17th March where crafts for the whole family will be held throughout the day, including children’s crafts, Dramability will be holding a live performance, mono printing demonstrations will be on offer and circus entertainment will entertain the crowds.

Festivities in Newry: Newry’s St. Patrick’s Day parade will embark on its journey from the Quays Shopping Centre at 1pm, with local schools, organisations and the community coming together to celebrate the occasion. Finishing in Kildare Street, the celebrations will continue to thrive in the centre of town, as well as McClelland Park and Newry and Mourne Museum at Bagenal’s Castle, where family-friendly activities will be ongoing throughout the day.

Whether you’re dancing to traditional tunes or exploring the city’s historic landmarks, embrace the magic of this special day and create memories that will last a lifetime.