Celebrate St Patrick’s Day at Dublin’s iconic heart: at the landmark General Post Office, in the center of town, right on the parade route. The GPO, once the headquarters of the Easter Rising, is possibly the most important building in all of Irish history. On Easter Monday 1916, Irish rebel leader Pádraig Pearse read the Proclamation of Independence outside its doors, declaring Ireland a republic. The ensuing doomed rebellion would destroy much of Dublin’s city center and result in the executions of most of its leaders, but was the pivotal event in the establishment of Ireland as an independent state.
We’ll start the day by bringing you behind the scenes for a private tour of the floats and bands in the morning, as the festivities and the excitement are gearing up. Next, tour the spectacular “Witness History” exhibition at the GPO, including an exciting display commemorating the 170-year history of the Irish flag, which first flew from the building’s rooftop during Easter Week 1916. Then the merriment really begins, with CIE Tours’ exclusive access to a private party in the GPO, made possible through our partnership with Shannon Heritage. From the party you can step just outside the door to watch the parade from a private viewing spot—and it’s a celebration like no other! Dublin’s St Patrick’s Day parade is a magnificent moving street performance, with marching bands accompanied by flamboyant carnival-style performers, dancers, and street theater groups. It’s a marvelous swirl of color, music and joy. After the parade, you will have free time to revel in the city’s festive atmosphere. (B, L)