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12 Of The Most Ridiculous Irish Festivals That Actually Exist

By clodagh

May 18, 2017 at 4:18pm


Ireland is a weird and wonderful place. We're very proud of our traditions, even if we don't understand them ourselves, thank you very much.

If you think that Electric Picnic and Longitude are the only festivals Ireland has to offer, you would be sorely mistaken.

We have a wide range of festivals to suit all tastes, questionable as they may be.

1. National Poultry Races, Laois

Okay, so this one hasn't happened in the last few years since 2014, but it most definitely deserves a spot on the list. What better way to spend your Easter Monday than racing your favourite poultry?

2. Trim Haymaking Festival

This is a celebration of rural Ireland and its heritage and culture, according to the festival's website

It seems like a good day out with a dog show, an attempt to break the Guinness World Record for longest hay rope twist, and of course, haymaking. The festival prides itself on bringing in the first hay of the year, by hand.

3. Bog Snorkelling Championships, Monaghan

Fancy yourself a good swimmer? Why not try the bog snorkelling championships! Get your flippers and snorkels on as you try to swim through 55m of bog, in as little time as possible. 

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4. Durrow Scarecrow Festival

This one is for the brave of you who don't still have your childhood fears of scarecrows. It's in its 8th year of competitive scarecrow-ing, and has been nominated twice as Best Festival. Impressive.

5. National Leprechaun Hunt, Louth

Carlingford strikes again. In case you didn't know, Slieve Foy Mountain became an official area for the Protection of Little People, by the EU. 

After the discovery of a leprechaun's suit and bones 20 years ago, people have been coming to the mount for the National Leprechaun Hunt to hunt the 236 leprechauns who are still living on the mountain. 

You'll be relieved to know that if people "come across a real leprechaun, [they] are asked to allow them to pass and to not try and capture them".

6. Imbolc Goat Milking Festival, Offaly

This festival celebrates Imbolc, one of the four Celtic seasons. The traditional of this season is the milking of the goat and then the churning of the milk afterwards. 

The festival are looking for a new Slieve Bloom Imbolc Goat for 2017, does your goat have what it takes? 

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7. Twinfest, Sligo

Twinfest was founded in 2010, and is still going strong seven years later. The festival, which aims to raise money for different charities, brings twins and triplets from all around the country together, for one day and one day only. Imagine the co-ordinating outfits! 

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8. Irish Redhead Convention, Cork

Another festival that raises money for charity, the Irish Redhead Convention is the coming together of all our fair-skinned and red-haired citizens, in one room. 

9. Ploughing Championships, Offaly

No list would be complete without the Ploughing Championships. This festival is actually bigger than Electric Picnic in terms of attendees, with approximately 300,000 people attending every year, for a good bit of farming fun.

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10. O'Driscoll Gathering, Cork

A gathering of all and any O'Driscolls from far and wide, in Baltimore , Cork. They will learn about the history of their shared surname over this three day festival.

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11. Puck Festival, Kerry

Each year the people of Kerry choose a new goat to be "crowned" the Puck goat. The festival lasts for three days until the goat is released back into the wild, and life goes back to normal again.

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12. Poc Fada

And finally, the poc fada. Where every Dad, Grandad and Uncle vie to prove themselves the best by hitting a sliotar as far as they can. 

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READ NEXT: 12 Spots Around Ireland That Give You That Perfect Panoramic View


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