St Patrick’s Day 2023 in Belfast: when is parade, what is the route, start time, other events?

St Patrick’s Day is being celebrated across Northern Ireland

The streets of Belfast are expected to be packed out as the annual St Patrick’s Day parade takes place.

Flocks of people will be descending on the Northern Irish capital to celebrate the patron saint. A high profile parade will also take place in Dublin on Friday (17 March).

The Beat Carnival’s St Paddy’s Day parade in Belfast is also an annual highlight. Visitors can expect plenty of music, colour and pagentry to the streets of the city.

If you are in Belfast on St Patrick’s Day and want to know what to expect. Here is how the patron saint of Ireland is being celebrate in the city in 2023:

When is the parade in Belfast?

The Beat Carnival’s St Patrick’s Day parade will start at Belfast Town Hall at 1.30pm on Friday. People are encourage to arrive in plenty of time and use both sides of the street.

 Children take part in the main St. Patrick’s Day parade in Belfast, Northern Ireland. (Photo by Paul McErlane/Getty Images)
 Children take part in the main St. Patrick’s Day parade in Belfast, Northern Ireland. (Photo by Paul McErlane/Getty Images)
Children take part in the main St. Patrick’s Day parade in Belfast, Northern Ireland. (Photo by Paul McErlane/Getty Images)

Do you need tickets?

The parade is a free event, you do not need tickets to watch the display in the Northern Ireland capital.

What is the route of the parade?

The parade will start at Belfast Town Hall at 1.30pm on Friday and will then continue its way through the city. It will head down Chichester Street, turning onto Victoria Street before coming back round to High Street and continuing to Castle Place.

For the final leg it will turn back onto Donegall Place and return to Belfast Town Hall.

Are there road closures in Belfast?

Belfast City Council have announced that there will be road closures in place on Friday due to the St Patrick’s Day parade. The following roads will be shut:

  • 12.30pm, closure of Donegall Square West
  • 12.30pm, closure of College Square East and Wellington Place
  • 12.30pm, closure of High Street (inner), Castle Place, Royal Avenue and Donegall Place
  • 12.30pm, closure of Victoria Street
  • 12.40pm, closure of Bridge Street
  • 12.50pm, closure of Chichester Street
  • 12.50pm, closure of Ann Street

Is St Patrick’s Day a public holiday in Northern Ireland?

The patron saint of Ireland is celebrated with a public holiday across the whole island of Ireland. Residents in both northern and southern Ireland will have the day off work and schools to mark the religious occasion.

It is also a public holiday in the Canadian province of Newfoundland and Labrador as well as the British Overseas Territory of Montserrat.

What other events are taking place in Belfast?

Celebrations for St Patrick’s Day began a week ago on 10 March in Belfast and will continue through to Sunday (19 March). Here is what is taking place, according to Belfast City Council:

  • Féile Trad Trail across various locations from Friday 10 to Sunday 19 March
  • Céilí at the Castle in Belfast Castle on 11, 12, 18 and 19 March
  • Belfast City of Song walking tour on 11, 18, 19 and 31 March
  • St Patrick’s Tales of Our City in 2 Royal Avenue from 13 to 19 March, 10am to 6pm
  • St Patrick's Day Celebrations public consultation 13 to 19 March
  • St Patrick's Tea Dance in 2 Royal Avenue from 2pm to 4pm on 16 March
  • St Patrick's Eve concert (all tickets are allocated)
  • St Patrick's Day Family Art Workshop in 2 Royal Avenue from 12 noon to 2pm on 17 March
  • St Patrick's Day Shindig in 2 Royal Avenue from 3pm to 5pm on 17 March
  • A music-themed St Patrick's Day parade starts outside City Hall at 1.30pm on 17 March
  • St Patrick's celebrations at St George's Market from 12 noon to 1.30pm on 17 March
  • Celtic Storm concert (sold out)