Celebrating St. Andrews Day in St. Andrews: What’s On

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St Andrew’s Day is Scotland’s official national day, and what better way to spend it than in the town namesake of Scotland’s patron saint?

St. Andrews turns into a hive of activity on Saint Andrew’s Day, and 2019 will be no different! From markets to ceilidhs, live music and fireworks- these St Andrews Day activities will appeal to everyone.

Do you need accommodation while celebrating St. Andrews Day? St. Andrews Tourist Hostel has beds for as little as £11 per night!

Who was St. Andrew?

Saint Andrew (whose name means ‘strength’ or ‘manliness’) was a very charismatic Galilean fisherman who was known for having great social skills. He was responsible for introducing the first foreigners to Jesus, and encouraged a large crowd of 5000 people to share their food with their neighbours.

He was the brother of Saint Peter, and this allowed the people of Scotland to appeal to the Pope at this time for protection against the English king who was trying to conquer Scotland. He was given his saintly honour when Scotland signed the Declaration of Arbroath (that cemented the country’s independence) in 1320.

St. Andrews, the town, was named after him as it is believed to be his final resting place. His supposed relics were discovered on the site of where St. Andrews Cathedral (once Scotland’s largest church) was built. David I built was responsible for building the cathedral and named it after the saint. Scotland’s flag also bears the saint’s Saltire Cross- the ‘St Andrew’s Cross’.

The Scottish are well-known for their friendliness and having some of the best hospitality in the world, so it is fitting that Saint Andrew was named their patron saint!

St. Andrew’s Day is celebrated every year on November 30, and is marked with a celebration of Scottish culture that includes ceilidh dancing, music, food and drink.

St Andrews Day Activities

Friday – November 29

St Andrews Day Crafts 1-4pm

Did you know St Andrew is also the patron saint of fishermen?

The Scottish Fisheries Museum is running free drop-in crafts from 1pm – 4pm. You can make banners, flags, or anything else you might need to join in on the St Andrews Day celebrations.

Sweet Treats at Jannetta’s Gelateria

Head along to the award-winning Jannetta’s Gelateria where milk chocolate and vanilla filled ‘Heilan Coos’ will be available on the run-up to St Andrews day.

Delicious milk chocolate Heilan Coo Chocolate Bombes will be available on the 29th of November which will include two scoops of Jannetta’s award-winning ice cream, a topping and sauce of your choice topped with fresh cream. Mmmm!

Two Scottish ice cream flavours, Haggis and Drambuie, will run for the week leading up to St Andrews Day.

Saturday – November 30

Free entry to Historic Sites

On St. Andrews Day there are a number of attractions in town which are free to get into. This includes St. Andrews Cathedral, St. Andrews Castle, and The British Golf Museum. St. Andrew’s Day is also the only day of the year that you can visit the Royal and Ancient Clubhouse.

St Andrews Day Big Hoolie

In 2019 there will be ceilidhs, parades, food & drink, a huge fireworks display on West Sands Beach, music as well as a festive artisan market taking place at Madras College Quadrangle.

Saturday – December 1

Market

Time: 11:00- 16:00
Where: Madras Lawn, St Andrews 

The market stalls will showcase local produce, food and drink, craft and societies from the University of St Andrews. 

This element of the day is in partnership with the Community Relations team, enhancing relations between town and gown. 

Live music and entertainment

Time: Throughout the day
Where:  Madras Lawn/ West Port, St Andrews 

There will be a variety of live music and entertainment throughout the day from the students of St. Andrews University and locals from the community.

Street Ceilidh

Time: 18:00-19:00
Where: Westport/ South Street 

Take to the streets for some traditional Scottish song and dance! The Kilrymont Ceilidh Band will be entertaining one of the largest outdoor street ceilidh’s in Scotland.

Torch Parade

Time: 19:00-19:45
Where: West port/ South Street

At the conclusion of the street ceilidh, a torch parade and procession will head towards the harbour.

Fireworks

Time: 20:00
Where: St Andrew’s Harbour 

After the Torch Parade, there will be an awesome fireworks display down at the harbour. 

For more information on events in St. Andrews celebrating St. Andrews Day, visit standrewsday.com

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