Can I have a ridiculously good time in London for St Patricks Day, I hear you say. To be sure, to be sure – you can! Our beloved capital city has more unique Irish bars and parties than you could shake a four leafed clover at. On St Paddy’s day, these places range from traditional Irish knees up right through to downright debauchery.
Depending on your personal level of love (or hate) for the black stuff and ceilidh bands, here is a hand picked selection of the finest establishments and get togethers to spend your time on March 17th, this side of the emerald isle.
The Auld Shillelagh
Tucked away behind a relatively inconspicuous door on Stoke Newington’s famous Church Street is the best pint of Guinness in London. Voted one of the best Irish pubs outside of Ireland – by none other than the Irish Times – if you’re looking for an authentic Irish pub with a some real Irish hospitality, look no further. Expect proceedings to get more than a little bit rowdy.
Where?: The Auld Shillelagh, 105 Stoke Newington Church St, Stoke Newington, N16 0UD
The St Patricks Day Parade
Get yourself down to Trafalgar Square at 12pm on 17th March for a parade like no other. This truly is the mother of all Paddy’s party in London town. Irish dancers, traditional music from a big main stage and leprechaun floats aplenty. Not to mention booze. Best book Monday off work, just incase.
Where?: Trafalgar Square, London WC2N 5DN
Howl at the Moon’s Paddy’s in the Park
A trendy Irish bar at the end of the much filmed Hoxton Street in Shoreditch, Howl is hosting it’s yearly St Patrick’s Day knees up in the picturesque community trust gardens next door. Expect street food, live music – traditional and otherwise -, six nations rugby and of course, kegs and kegs of Guinness. Oh, and the Arctic Monkeys also filmed a music video here.
If you’re looking for a no holds barred, lairy Sunday session – look no further. A lively, sprawling Irish boozer in the heart of Covent Garden, home to many a pub crawl, tourist and rugby fan over the years. A multi floored layout which seems to go on forever, there’s plenty of room for manoeuvre after you’ve sunk a few of their hand crafted its beers and ales – all made in Dublin, no less! There’s also a basement club to stumble into if you intend on partying until the wee hours.
Where?: The Porterhouse, 21-22, Maiden Ln, Covent Garden, London WC2E 7NA
Can’t Dance Ceilidh at The Piano Works – Farringdon
Don’t want to face a Monday hangover? Get your Paddy’s day partying out of your system on Sat 16th March instead. One of London’s best kept secrets, Piano-works main attraction is well, live music played from a Piano. Tucked away within an old Victorian Warehouse, this will be an all day / all night affair – request the songs you want to hear throughout the and get your dancing shoes on for some serious traditional Ceilidh action.
Where?: The Piano Works, 113-117 Farringdon Rd, London EC1R 3BX
Built in 1667, as legend goes, Fleet Street’s Grade II listed The Tipperary pub was the first to ever sell Guinness in the UK! What better place to sink one on St Paddy’s day? Don’t expect any airs and graces here, with an old school food menu and dining room, this is the very definition of traditional. What they do boast is a cracking array of Irish whiskeys to get stuck into.
Where?: The Tipperary, 66 Fleet St, Temple, London EC4Y 1HT
God and see The Pogues (sort of)
What’s nearly as good as seeing everyone’s favourite Christmas song purveyors? Watching their leading tribute band, of course! Head down to the Half Moon Putney from 8pm for a night of dancing, drinking and people attempting to sing in the voice of Shane McGowan. Tickets £12.
Where?: The Half Moon, 93 Lower Richmond Rd, London SW15 1EU