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Bagpipers in green uniforms playing at St. Patrick's Day parade.

Mar 17, 2020 | NYC Attractions and Events

Celebrating St. Patrick’s Day in New York

Every year, when March 17 approaches, New Yorkers take some time to remember their Irish past. It doesn’t matter if your ancestors arrived at Ellis Island or not. St. Patrick’s Day is the day to channel your inner Irish. Here’s how to do it!

Go to the St. Patrick’s Day Parade

Did you know that the largest St. Patrick’s Day Parade in the world happens in New York, not in Ireland? Perhaps it’s because of the massive influx of Irish immigrants in the old days or the fact that the parade has been around since 1762. Whatever the case, New York’s parade is the no. 1 must-see attraction on this holiday. Take a short walk from The Manhattan Club to Fifth Avenue, between 44th Street and 79th Street. The parade starts at 11am and ends at around 5pm.

Follow the Footsteps of Irish Immigrants

Speaking on Irish immigrants, this is the time of year to get an idea about the dire conditions in which low-income immigrants lived. The Tenement Museum offers an authentic glimpse into the dark past of New York’s housing. Take the Irish Outsiders tour to walk in the shoes of an Irish family from 1869. 

If you want even more information of Irish immigrants, a visit to Ellis Island Immigration Museum is a must. This historic port of entry has a massive database of passengers who arrived in New York between 1892 and 1954, when Ellis Island was closed as a port. 

Learn about New York’s Irish Heritage

What better way to embrace Irish heritage than to be at the center of its culture? New York’s Irish Arts Center organizes an annual event that features performances, exhibitions, workshops, and educational programs.

Visit the Famous St. Patrick’s Cathedral

Established in 1879, St. Patrick’s Cathedral represented religious freedom and tolerance to its followers. Today, its long history, Neo-Gothic architecture and the popular service are but a handful of its appeals. Take its official self-guided tour to get more out of your visit. 

Drink Green Beer

Before the sun sets, make way to an authentic Irish pub to have a pint or two. During St. Patrick’s Day, a lot of the beer is dyed green to commemorate the occasion. Whether you want to have Guinness or good ol’ ale, we recommend McSorley’s Old Ale House, Paddy Maguire's Ale House or Dead Rabbit. Whichever you choose, we guarantee a great atmosphere, an Irish vibe and flowing rivers of beer. 

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