Skip to Content

5 Ways to Celebrate Irish Culture This St. Patrick’s Day ☘️

Share this 🍀😍

St. Patrick’s Day, on March 17th, is a festival celebrated all over the world! What’s wonderful about this festival is that it’s an opportunity to embrace Irish culture, regardless of where you are or your heritage. St. Patrick’s Day is a day to wear some green, go to a parade or have a drink with friends, depending on your preferences.

These common activities, however, aren’t the only ways a person can feel “a little Irish” on Ireland’s national holiday. Instead, there are many ways to delve deeper into the Irish culture and make an authentic connection with the Emerald Isle. One of the optimal ways to honour St. Patrick’s Day is to learn a little more about Ireland and the Irish people

To help get you started, here’s a list of 5 fun and authentic ways to celebrate St. Patrick’s Day that you might not have thought of…

Try Irish Dancing 👯

When Riverdance came onto the scene at the 1994 Eurovision contest, it immediately forged itself a place in Irish culture. A modification of traditional step dancing, it went on to become a stage show and one of the most successful dance productions in history. Nonetheless, in addition to the more “classic” style of step dancing, other types of dancing are also popular in Ireland, including sean nós, céilí, and set dancing. These dances are not only taught all over the world but can also be learned online (as they became common during the pandemic). Irish Dance Magazine provides a list of Irish dancing schools around the world, as does the World Irish Dance Association.

Have an Irish Movie Marathon

watch irish movie

Forget films like P.S. I Love You or Leap Year, which are American movies set in Ireland—and not a very authentic Ireland. Instead, there are plenty of excellent Irish-made examples you may not have heard of. St. Paddy’s Day can be a great time to get acquainted with them. The Banshees of Inisheerin garnered international attention for its Oscar nominations in 2023, but other movies from the country’s vibrant film industry are must-sees. Here are just a few: The Commitments (1991), Michael Collins (1996), Once (2007), The Secret of Kells (2009), Black 47 (2018), Flora and Son (2023), Belfast (2021) and the first Irish language film to be nominated for an Academy Award, An Cailín Ciúin (The Quiet Girl) (2022). 

Learn the Irish Language

Learn Irish online

Maybe the best way to throw yourself into the popular holiday is to learn a little Irish (sometimes referred to as Gaelic). There are a variety of resources on the web, including the online community at You’ll find daily classes and weekly conversation sessions, as well as special online workshops, including their free workshop at the beginning of each month. Check out their learner videos and articles for extra inspiration. Speaking a few words in Irish would be the perfect way to celebrate “Lá Fhéile Pádraig” (St. Patrick’s Day) this year!

Eat an Irish Meal

Many people have bacon and cabbage to celebrate St. Patrick’s Day (Irish immigrants in the US began substituting corned beef for bacon in the 19th century). However, that’s not your only culinary option for foods associated with the Emerald Isle.

A Guinness stew makes for a hardy and holiday-appropriate lunch, perhaps accompanied by a slice of soda bread. You can also try your hand at making some traditional Irish Colcannon. This Irish dish of creamy mashed potatoes and cabbage derives its name from the Irish word for white-headed cabbage, cál ceannann. A true celebration of the humble spud, this dish is the perfect addition to any meal.

Donate to an Irish Charity

What better way to be in the spirit of St. Patrick’s Day than to contribute to an organization helping those in need, whether in Ireland or outside of it? Some of the largest Irish charities include the Irish Cancer Society (for those affected by cancer), Enable Ireland (supporting individuals with disabilities) and the Pieta House (trying to prevent suicide and self-harm). Additionally, Trócaire works in partnership with communities in 23 countries in Ireland to relieve poverty and tackle injustice.

At the heart of St. Patrick’s Day is embracing the Irish culture, regardless of where you are or who your ancestors might be. There are many ways to do that. Ireland is a country rich in traditions, and there are plenty of opportunities to explore them this March. And in doing so, you might meet new friends, find a new pastime or pick up a new language!

This St. Patrick’s Day put on something green and discover something new about Ireland.

Share this 🍀😍