Where to celebrate St Andrew’s Day in Scotland

Friday 09 February 2018

St Andrew has been the patron saint of Scotland for over 1,000 years, and is commemorated across Scotland on St Andrew’s Day, 30 November, with festivals, traditional Scottish dancing, and plenty of whisky. The exact reason for his sainthood is cloaked in mystery and myth alike, though one thing is for certain, the Scots certainly know how to throw a celebration in his honour! Grab your kilt and join in the fun at one of Scotland’s many events – here are a few to get you started.

St Andrew’s Day Celebrations in St Andrews! St Andrews, east Scotland

St Andrews Day parade, Scotland

What better way to celebrate Scotland’s patron saint than in the town that bears his name. Start the 6-day extravaganza of St Andrews events with ‘Beating the Retreat’, an open-air pipe band parade that will snake through the town. Afterwards, dance the day away at Scotland’s largest open-air ceilidh, or sing your heart out at the street party, featuring top Scottish artists. Look out for the Open Doors event, where notable local buildings open across the town, ready to be explored.

When: 25-30 November 2016.
Getting there: located in the east of Scotland, St Andrews is an 80-minute train journey from Edinburgh, or less than a 2-hour drive.  

Head to the capital for St Andrew’s Day, Edinburgh, east Scotland

Celebrate Scotland’s national day in the nation’s capital city, Edinburgh, where storytelling events and traditional music meet food and drink markets offering street food, sweet treats and seasonal crafts. Edinburgh’s St Andrew’s Day celebrations start off the city’s winter season of events, including Christmas and Hogmanay, making it a festive time to visit. While in the area stop by at the Saltire Festival, just outside of the city to celebrate Scotland's heritage, culture, delicious food and traditions. 

When: dates to be confirmed. Check website for details. Saltire Festival: 24-30 November 2016.
Getting there: Edinburgh is in the east of Scotland a 70-minute flight from London.

Have your fill at the St Andrew’s food and drink festival, St Andrews, east Scotland

Running a range of innovative food and drinks events throughout November, the ‘Savour St Andrews’ food and drink festival is held in and around the Fife town that bears the patron saint’s name. Expect live performances, one-off golf events, whisky tastings, and lots of storytelling. On St Andrew’s Day itself, top chefs will join forces to offer a St Andrew’s Day dinner like no other. While you’re there, explore the ruins of the cathedral, one of Scotland’s largest medieval churches, or take a stroll through its idyllic medieval streets. The event will culminate in special celebrations at the end of the month.

When: throughout November, check website for details. 
Getting there: located in the east of Scotland, St Andrews is an 80-minute train journey from Edinburgh, or less than a 2-hour drive.

Light up the dark at Oban Winter Festival, west Scotland

Oban town, Scotland

Head to the beautiful town of Oban for the celebrations and you won’t be disappointed. Its 10-day winter festival also includes St Andrew's Day celebrations, with a food and craft market, Haggis Festival, Whisky Festival, ceilidh, and St Andrew's Day 'Tartan Dash'. Bursting with seasonal cheer, the 10-day event will celebrate the town's unique culture, and sees Oban awash with street parades, international and local performing artists, fire art, pipers, and lantern parades. This year's theme is 'a Taste of Winter', and will also include vivid light projections onto the historic McCaig's Tower.  

When: 18-27 November 2016.
Getting there: Oban is on Scotland’s west coast, a three-hour drive from Edinburgh.

Be immersed in culture for St Andrew’s Day, Glasgow, west Scotland

View of Glasgow city at night

St Andrew’s Day in the great city of Glasgow will see a vivid programme of events, including one-off film screenings, as well as special events at The Hunterian Museum and Art Gallery, Kelvingrove Park and the Riverside Museum. Sample delicious food and drink from some of the region's finest producers, and immerse yourself in all things Scottish.

When: dates to be confirmed, check website for details. 
Getting there: Glasgow is in the west of Scotland, less than an hour by train from Edinburgh.

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