How to celebrate St Patrick’s Day in Cairns, Australia

Did you know that 30% of Australians claim some sort of Irish Ancestry? Up here in Cairns, we’re more than fifteen thousand kilometres away from Ireland, but that doesn’t stop the people of Far North Queensland from enjoying St Patricks Day and celebrating their roots with a schooner of green beer. Today we’ve got some ideas for how to make the most of your time in Cairns on St. Paddy’s day.

Before the weekend starts: Get your Irish Swag On

st patricks day costume cairns
This is the best place to score some swag for St Patrick’s Day weekend

The best place to get some green for your St Patricks Day celebration is at Singapore Charlie’s. T-shirts, leprechauns, hats and dresses. If you’re ready to get into the spirit this St Patricks Day, Singapore Charlies is the place to prepare. They’re open seven days a week, on Shield Street, less than a kilometre away from the hostel. Just in case you’re not in Cairns, you can even order online and have your Celtic costume delivered anywhere in Australia in a week!

St Patrick’s Day weekend: The fun starts Friday

PJ O'Brien's
PJ O’Brien’s is always good for backpackers, but even better on St Paddy’s

St Patrick’s day is on Sunday, March 17th, meaning that there will be festivities all weekend long happening in Cairns City. Friday night we recommend heading to PJ O’Brien’s, the best Irish bar for backpackers in Cairns. PJ O’Brien’s is a great place year-round for backpackers who want to party or have an affordable restaurant meal, but on Friday, March 15th party-goers will be treated to live Irish music from 10 PM to 1:30 AM!

Saturday activities

Get ready for a big Irish blowout at The Reef Hotel Casino

Saturday the fun definitely continues at PJ O’Briens with live Irish music from 3 PM till 6 PM and again from 10 PM til 1:30 AM again but the biggest Celtic blowout in Cairns on Saturday is at Bar36 Live Lounge inside the Reef Hotel Casino. They’ll have 4 different Celtic musical groups performing on Saturday, including Cairns’ very own Irish Dancers. If you really want to get into the Celtic cultural spirit, it’s definitely the place to be on St Patricks Day weekend.

Saturday Schedule

  • 06:30pm – 08:00pm THE KROOVS
  • 08:00pm – 08:30pm IRISH DANCERS
  • 08:30pm – 10:30pm DAMIEN LEITH
  • 11:00pm – 01:00am CLAYMORE

Sunday’s activities: The real St. Patrick’s Day

What McGintys lacks in size it makes up in authenticity

At this point, you may have been drowning in Guinness for two days straight, but the third day of Cairns Celtic festivities is the real deal, March 17th, St Patricks Day.

For your third day of Irish partying check out a third location, McGinty’s Irish Bar. McGinty’s is also only one kilometre from the hostel. They will be having live music starting at 2 PM from The Imbibers with a mixture of Aussie and Irish favourites.

Back at PJ O’Briens, you could start your Sunday off with a real Irish breakfast for only $20, including proper Irish sausages and a pint of beer. They’ll have live music from 3-6 PM and from 9 PM until midnight.

At the Reef Hotel, there will be more live music and Irish Dancing starting at 6PM

Sunday Schedule

  • 06:00pm – 08:00pm DAMIEN LEITH
  • 08:00pm – 08:30pm DANCERS
  • 09:00pm – 11:30pm CLAYMORE

Wherever you choose to celebrate, have a happy St. Patrick’s Day from Travellers Oasis in Cairns!

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