WHERE: Killorglin, Ireland
WHEN: from 10 to 12 August 2023
Are you ready to join thousands of diners to attend the most incredible marriages of the year? If you were to be in Ireland, from 10 to 12 August, you are invited, too, to the royal wedding …. Puck Fair. Do not expect, however, to witness the union of two bold, beautiful young people.
No sovereign future and, above all, no nation to govern. You will not attend a Royal parade; you will not hear a trumpet; you will not see any prince on horseback
At the Puck Fair, the one who will take the hand of the beautiful young woman of the country will be King Capra!
That’s right. Every year, during the month of August, in the small Irish village of Killorglin, not far from Cork, the marriage between the King Goat and the most beautiful damsel of the village takes place. Because a king can not remain alone! Precisely for this reason, every year, a girl, chosen among the most beautiful, will accompany the king goat during the festivities.
It is a popular celebration, colorful and lively, which has always distinguished the town; the celebration is exclusively symbolic. The goat is celebrated and nourished for three days. The ceremony, halfway between the sacred and the profane, no matter how absurd it may appear, is inspired by a legend.
It is said that at the time of the invasion of the Irish lands, led by Oliver Cromwell (British condottiere and politician), a billy goat abandoned the herd. Frightened by the arrival of the soldiers, he headed for Cill Orglain (Killorglin). His arrival made the inhabitants sense the danger; thanks to the warning of the animal, people managed to counteract the invaders and largely to save themselves. This is one of the most accredited theories about the origins of the Puck Fair.
Photo, 2010 IrishFireside
Killorglin, on the occasion of the party, is transformed. To date, the event is among the most important and followed. It is not for the undersigned to judge the content and modality of the party. Certainly a goat will not like being deprived of its habitat, and thrown into the fray of thousands of people. The organizers, however, have always stressed that the welfare of the goat was of utmost importance. There are strict protocols in place to ensure this, and they are supervised and supervised by an independent veterinarian surgeon. There are also specific committees.
Reception and hospitality have always been a feature of the Irish people. Killorglin is no less.
The small town is located in the south of Ireland, not far from the beautiful Killarney National Park, about 100 kilometers from Cork. To get to Killorglin from Cork, take the n.40 bus to Killarney; from the latter, with the 279A bus you can reach your destination in less than half an hour. Further info, on the Irish transport site from this link.
Of course, the town can be easily reached by car. Killorglin, is located along the famous Ring of Kerry Road. From Killarney, take the N72, while from Tralee, take the N70. Once in the city, you have to follow the signs for the parking. Many areas, in fact, are limited to traffic during the 3 days, to ensure the correct flow of tourists. There are two large parking areas at Annadale Road Car Park (opposite Bianconi Inn), Killarney Road (near Puck Goat Statue) and Tralee Road. The cost is €5 for the day.
The program of events and activities of the Festival is quite rich. Every day, you will be able to attend musical, theatrical and comic performances, at different times and places in the city.
Every evening, free live concerts in the central square. Appointment from 22:00 to 00:00. On August 10, at 17:30, the Gathering ceremony begins, with the parade and the coronation of the Goat King. At the stroke of midnight, don’t miss the fireworks display.
But the Puck Fair is also a festival for families. Every day, at all hours, fun is guaranteed with Face-Painting, Street Performers, Music, Puppet Shows and lots of workshops for the little ones. There will also be several competitions such as Bonny Baby, Fancy Dress and Pet Show. All activities are FREE! For the older ones, however, entertainment is guaranteed with the Horse and Livestock Fair. Anyone wishing to buy something can visit the Craft Fair. You will find many local, national and international handicrafts and traditional products, such as handmade jewellery, cosmetic and beauty products, clothes, accessories, and much more.
Closing on August 12 (Dispersion Day) with the dethronement of the King and the final fireworks display.
Photo ©, John Foley
Those wishing to stay in the city, keep in mind that the facilities available are not many. In particular, during the Puck Fair. The alternatives, of course, are not lacking. Through this link, the best offers to stay in Killorglin and surroundings. Killarney e Tralee have a good availability of B & B and accommodation. In Tralee you will find facilities at cheaper prices.
Located in the center of Tralee, the Tralee Townhouse, recommended by us, offers rooms with private bathroom just 300 meters from the National Folkloric Theater of Ireland – Siamsa Tíre. Each room features free WiFi, a TV, a work desk, ironing facilities and tea / coffee making facilities. The en suite bathroom comes with a shower or a bath, free toiletries and a hairdryer. Close to the event, you will hardly find free rooms. Book in advance, from here.
The biggest concerts, shows and events around the world in 2023 and 2024. The calendar of the most beautiful and renowned parties, and the most absurd and incredible ones