St. Patrick’s Day is really focused on all things Ireland, so what is there to do on March 17 in Seoul (essentially the complete opposite of Ireland)? The answer is simply to celebrate anyway.
I went to the Irish Fest in Sindorim, which was every bit as green as an Irish Fest back home might be. People were dancing, a Korean U2 cover band played, and there was even Irish bread available for a 2,000 won donation to help build a memorial for the Irish victims of the Korean War (because apparently they exist… well, existed). Though the crowd was primarily foreigners there was still a significant amount of Koreans out celebrating a holiday I never thought would have made it to this part of the world. After the Irish Fest, we all went to Itaewon, the major foreigner section of Seoul. A lot of the bars seemed to be having specials of some sort so we spent the majority night barhopping. I ended up going to one bar that was supposed to have Irish bands playing all night who ended up being a lot of the same performers I saw earlier at the Irish Fest but, after a few pints of Guinness, I wasn’t really bothered that much.
So even though my St. Patrick’s Day was more kimchi-oriented than would have ever thought possible, the day ended up being a lot of fun. But just to give everyone out there reading this an idea of what exactly a Korean St. Patrick’s Day is like, I present to you the Korean U2 cover band: