St. Patrick's Day Malta

Celebrate St. Patrick’s Day with the Maltese the Irish Way

St Patricks day in Malta is the time for everyone to drink and celebrate the Irish style. It is the day where many take leave from work, meet friends and head on to the big gathering at St. Julian’s.

When is St. Patrick's day

  • It is always celebrated on the 17th March which is the costumery death date of Saint Patrick who is the main patron saint of Ireland. AD 385–461).

St Patrick’s day Public Holiday

  • In Malta it is a normal working day for everyone both for private companies and all government departments. All banks are open as usual everyone operates with the normal working hours.
  • Abroad it is surely a public holiday in the Republic of Ireland and Northern Ireland.
  • On the other hand it is a normal day for many people in England, Scotland and Wales.

Why do the Irish celebrate St. Patrick’s day?

  • It is a heritageculture and religious celebration which celebrates the arrival of Christianity in Ireland.
  • It has been so for hundreds of years.
  • It became an official Catholic feast day during the early 17th Century. Today it is a global celebration of Irish Culture especially by Irish communities and descents. 

How it is usually celebrated and what does people wear?

  • It is usually celebrated with public parades and festivals but these are not held in Malta although the Irish-Maltese Circle organise a parade at the capital city Valletta.
  • People wear green coloured clothing and green hats.
  • real shamrock is usually worn on the lapel on St. Patrick’s Day. The shamrock is associated with good luck.
  • shamrock is a green plant where each stem has three round leaves around it. It is the national symbol of Ireland.
  • Legend says that Saint Patrick used the shamrock plats with three leaves on one stem to explain the Holy Trinity to the then Irish pagans.

St Patrick’s Day Festival – Turning Valletta green

  • To start a mass is celebrated at 10:00 in the Church of St. Barbara Valletta.
  • At 12:00 a colourful parade is held at the capital city in Valletta starting from City Gate down Republic Street. Apart from foreign participants local scouts bands take part. At St. George’s Square on the stage there are performances by the different groups entertaining the numerous crowd.
  • Every year it is organized by the Irish-Maltese Circle. 

Do the Maltese celebrate St Patrick’s day?

  • Yes. In Malta it is celebrated on the same day of the 17th March.
  • The main gathering is at St. Julian’s where thousands of people pack the St Julian's seafront area.
  • With drinking of local Farsons beers and foreign imported beers. Loud traditional Irish music is played over loudspeakers. Bars are purposely erected in the main road side car park called Spinola.
  • People start gathering in early afternoon and remain there till the early hours of next day.

What should be expected for those who have never been there

  • park and ride is available from the nearby Luxol Grounds.
  • The St. Julian’s area seafront is packed with thousands of people.
  • Many foreigners join the Maltese to celebrate this event.
  • Today it is a meeting point of many friendly communities of friends meet up to drink and chat for long hours up to the early hours of the next day.
  • Many bars and restaurants offer an ample variety of beers and drinks to satisfy the variety of requests by locals and foreigners who today live and work in Malta.

St Patrick’s day Malta and the local community 

  • The local community of St. Julian’s who live in the surroundings are not happy at all about this event as it bring with it complaints about the excessive noise and excessive litter.

St. Patrick’s Festival in Dublin, Ireland

  • It is celebrated between the 13th and 17th March 2020. Five great days and nights.

St. Julian’s Local Council

- On this day 17th of March the St. Julian’s Local Council has organized a park and ride shuttle service from the Luxol Ground (Pembroke) up to Triq Michelangelo Borg (near the Spinola Car Park). This is operated between 6pm and 1am. At the Luxol Ground there is ample space to park and it is a great idea for those who come with their car. The ride takes on around 7 to 10 minutes not because it is far away but only due to traffic.

- A specific phone number was allocated to handle the residents’ complaints.

- Due to the impact on the local residents the local council has tried a lot to come up with solutions to minimise the negative impact.

- They have organised a meeting with the various stakeholders to find the best way forward for this celebration. Through efforts by the councils they coordinated meetings with the local bars to share the costs of clean-up of the mess of bottles, cans and other rubbish left behind scattered all over the streets.

Sources and Further Reading

- The Irish-Maltese Circle
- Huge crowd parties on St Patrick's Day in St Julian's | Times Of Malta
- St. Patrick’s Festival in Dublin, Ireland
- Park and Ride | Television Malta

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