festivals sligo

Discover Festivals in Sligo: A Cultural Gem

Sligo, located on Ireland’s Wild Atlantic Way, is a cultural paradise. It invites visitors with its rich history, beautiful scenes, and deep cultural roots. It is known for inspiring famous poets, such as W.B. Yeats, highlighting Ireland’s soul.1

Places like the Carrowmore Megalithic Cemetery and Sligo Abbey’s ruins tell ancient stories. The W.B. Yeats Memorial Building adds to the unique charm, connecting history and art1. There’s also Benbulben mountain and the Glencar Waterfall, famous for their beauty.

The town of Strandhill and Mullaghmore Head add to the natural charm1. Exploring Sligo, you’ll see its rich cultural scene. The Model arts centre and its music events blend perfectly with the breathtaking landscape1.

Key Takeaways

  • Vibrant festivals blend with historical treasures and scenic landscapes in Sligo.
  • Carrowmore Megalithic Cemetery dates back to around 4500 BCE and is a significant historical site.1
  • Sligo Abbey, despite its fire-damaged state, stands as a testament to 13th-century architecture.1
  • The Model Arts Centre hosts an important art collection and various workshops.1
  • Natural attractions like Glencar Waterfall and Mullaghmore Head enhance Sligo’s allure.1

Introduction to Sligo’s Festivals

Sligo’s culture comes alive every year at its festivals. These events mix old traditions with new celebrations, showing the area’s rich culture. Summer in Sligo means lively gatherings full of music, art, and great food. There’s always something fun to do.

Take the Sligo Live Festival, for example. It draws more than 1 million people together to enjoy over 58 million songs2. Big names like Steve Earle and Robert Plant have performed there2. Next year’s festival will run from October 28 to November 6, offering more unforgettable experiences2.

Sligo annual gatherings

The Sligo 400 Summer Festival is different. It has music for everyone, making it a popular choice3. Acts range from local talent like A Plastic Rose to international stars. It includes fun sports events, too, adding to its appeal3.

But the fun doesn’t stop at music. Festivals in Sligo also showcase local art and food. At the Sligo Live Festival, there’s an ‘Art Trail’ and a ‘Food and Craft Village’. These let visitors get close to the area’s arts, crafts, and tasty dishes2. So, going to a festival in Sligo is like diving into its vibrant culture.

Sligo Live Festival: A Musical Celebration

The Sligo Live Festival is a key event for *music lovers in Sligo*. It turns the town into a music paradise. With Irish and international acts, it showcases Sligo’s vibrant music. More than 38,000 people attend 80+ events in a weekend. This pumps €4.5 million into the local economy in just five days4. It’s loved for featuring stars like Robert Plant and The Waterboys, drawing fans from far and wide2.

Line-ups and Performances

Each year, the Sligo Live Festival impresses with 170 acts. In 2009, it hosted shows from a wide variety of genres4. With top-notch sound and lights, it guarantees a great time for everyone. Previous years saw Lisa Hannigan, Gavin James, and more wow the crowds2. The high turnout at all performances shows how well the festival hooks its audience4.

Venues and Locations

Sligo Live turns every corner of the town into a music stage. From grand theatres to cosy cafes, there’s a spot for all acts and audience sizes. The “Art Trail” showcases culture and music’s local impact, adding to the festival’s charm2. With pubs for traditional sessions and big stages for rock, the festival’s venues make it special and truly appealing.

Tickets and Access

The festival aims to be open to all, with easy access to its music events. Tickets are on sale at www.sligolive.ie2. The plan is to make future festivals even bigger and more diverse4. Workshops, talks, and a “Food and Craft Village” offer more than just music. They’re about sharing Sligo’s rich history, culture, and food too2.

music events in Sligo

The Yeats International Summer School

The Yeats International Summer School is a key literary event. It celebrates W.B. Yeats in Sligo. It attracts students from all over the world, including places like Tunisia and Australia5. This event lasts ten days, from July 27th to August 4th5cultural celebrations in Sligo

The programme costs €700 per student. Local costs might bring it up to €1,000. Sessions mostly happen at the Methodist Church, creating a cultural centre5. Along with academic sessions, there’s a boat trip, Irish dancing, and music. This adds fun and cultural activities to the learning experience5. Participants also get to see local scenic spots like Drumcliffe and Glencar5.

The school is getting ready for its 65th year in 20246. Over the years, poets like Jessica Traynor have shared their work. There have been free events, like Culture Night, to make it inclusive6.

This year is the 46th school edition. Poets Vona Groarke and Paul Muldoon will present7. They’re also celebrating the Gallery Press’ 35 years, with poets like Conor O’Callaghan7. A play, “Sword Against The Sea,” will have its Irish premiere at Hawk’s Well Theatre on August 67.

The Yeats Summer School is more than just about Yeats. It’s a big part of Sligo’s cultural life. It shows the importance of yearly cultural events5.

Festivals in Sligo: Celebrating Arts and Culture

Sligo sits in the middle of Ireland’s Wild Atlantic Way. It’s known for its lively arts festivals. These events bring together new and old ways of creating. They show off Sligo’s colourful cultural history through various artistic styles.

The Model Arts Centre

The Model Arts Centre is full of life and creativity. It’s well-known for its changing exhibits, learning programs, and events for the community. The Model is at the heart of Sligo’s modern arts scene. It welcomes people to explore different art forms. This centre is a key spot for Sligo’s arts festivals8. Open all year round, it brings together artists and art fans. This makes it important in spreading the joy of modern arts in Sligo.

arts festivals in Sligo

Local Artisan Workshops

There are many local artisan workshops in Sligo. They display the amazing work of the area’s craftspeople. Mixing old Irish crafts with new artistic methods is their specialty. Whether it’s making pottery or textile arts, these workshops show the talent of local artisans. They also offer chances for people to learn craft skills. This hands-on approach is a great way to enjoy and understand these local crafts.

Traditional Music Sessions

Traditional music is a big part of Sligo’s life. You can hear the happy sounds of fiddles and flutes in its pubs. These music nights are enjoyed by both locals and visitors. Sligo is famous for its music festivals. Events like the Paddy Killoran Traditional Music Festival are loved by many. They highlight Sligo as a place for music fans8. Music brings people together in these sessions. It shows the real fun and warmth of Sligo, which you won’t forget.

Family-Friendly Festivals in Sligo

Sligo is perfect for all ages, offering many family-friendly festivals. Enjoy learning and being entertained at places like Eagles Flying bird sanctuary and the Hawks Well Theatre. You can learn and have fun at the same time. The County Museum and Art Gallery also add educational value to the fun. In August, there’s the five-day Tubbercurry Old Fair Day Festival. It’s full of activities for families9. The May Bank Holiday weekend sees the Vogler Spring Festival with family-friendly music8.

For our young adventurers, there’s lots to explore at places like Drumcliffe Tea House and Craft Shop. They get to see local crafts and learn about history. In August, the Sligo Races mix horse racing with family fun9. Also, the Queen Maeve Festival from the 3rd to 5th of May 2024 promises fun and creative family activities10.

Sligo family entertainment

The Sligo Feis Shligigh in March and April is great for kids. It offers lots of cultural performances for families8. Hazelwood Forest is perfect for walks with imaginative children. Plus, the County Museum shares interactive exhibits, mixing fun with learning. This way, kids enjoy Sligo’s culture while having fun.

Annual Gatherings and Cultural Celebrations

Sligo lights up with festivals all year round. These events show off the county’s deep history and lively community. They range from ancient rituals to today’s parties, offering something for everyone.

Historical Festivals

Sligo’s historical gatherings are key to its link with the past. They help both locals and visitors connect with Ireland’s rich history. Events at places like Carrowmore Megalithic Cemetery let you step into the past. They show prehistoric traditions in action. With about 10 of these events every year, Sligo makes it easy to touch history9.

Modern Celebrations

In Sligo, there are many modern festivals too. They suit all kinds of tastes and interests. The Sligo Live Festival in October is a prime example9. It features vibrant live music to enjoy. The Model arts centre hosts art events to keep Sligo up-to-date with cultural trends. The Cairde Sligo Arts Festival runs for 8 days, celebrating new creative ventures in the area9.

modern festival experiences

Community Events

Community gatherings in Sligo show its strong local spirit and love for tradition. The Tubbercurry Old Fair Day has been happening for 36 years, highlighting the area’s close-knit feel9. It lasts 5 days and showcases local crafts, food, and demos. The Annual Warriors Run is another event that mixes adventure and traditional tales. It includes live music and other entertainment9. These events prove Sligo’s dedication to bringing people together in meaningful ways.

Keen to learn more about Sligo’s yearly events? Head to Sligo’s annual events page for details.

Music Events in Sligo: A Melodic Experience

Sligo becomes a hub for vibrant music festivals, making it a sound lover’s dream. The South Sligo Summer School is a prime example. It happens from 14-20 July in Tubbercurry and gathers fans of Irish tunes from all over. This event shows off lots of live shows and classes. It’s a true reflection of Sligo’s musical spirit11.

Acts like Alabama 3 Acoustic and Paul Brady greatly enhance the live music scene in Sligo. Fans eagerly await Alabama 3 Acoustic’s show at the Sligo Live Festival after 14 years. They bring a mix of old classics and new beats to excite the crowd12.

Plus, the amazing Paul Brady makes sure the audience falls in love with his songs. He makes Sligo even more of a cultural hotspot in Ireland. His performances are a highlight, showing the heart of Sligo’s music12.

melodic festivals in Sligo

Bands like Sligo Rags add their own lively tunes to the mix. Known for songs like “The Whiskey Never Lies” and “Dirty Old Town,” they are crowd favorites. They make the music scene in Sligo even richer for both locals and visitors13.

The Fleadh Cheoil na Mumhan in Tralee, Kerry, from 15-22 July, also boosts Sligo’s musical reputation. It highlights the deep pool of talent in Sligo. Such events show that Sligo is pivotal in keeping Irish music alive and well.

Sligo offers a wide range of music festivals. From big events to smaller ones, there’s something for every music fan. It makes Sligo stand out as a leading destination for music in Ireland, welcoming all to its vibrant scene.

Culinary Festivals: A Taste of Sligo

Sligo’s culinary festivals are packed with delicious food. They show off the sea’s riches and the area’s fresh produce. These events really bring out the best in Sligo’s food scene.

Seafood Festivals

The seafood festivals in Sligo are amazing. They offer a wide range of fresh catches from the Atlantic Ocean. Local chefs and seafood fans come together to enjoy the ocean’s offerings. You can eat things like smoked salmon and oysters. All this comes with the best produce from Sligo.

Local Produce Markets

Sligo’s markets give you a real taste of what the county grows. Coopershill House has 500 ancient acres and is known for its organic farming. It’s home to 150 fallow deer14. And Drumcliffe’s Pink Clover Café loves its local ingredients. They serve organic salad, eggs, and meat, and they roast their coffee beans. You must try their special drink, made with raspberry and lemon. It honours poet W.B. Yeats14.

Sligo culinary festivals

Food Trails and Tours

Só Sligo Food Festival offers a lot to visitors. They can taste over 30 house specialities for €5 each on the Só Sligo Food Trail15. There’s also a food village full of delights every Friday to Sunday. It’s a great time for food lovers15.

The festival has food demonstrations on seaweed, fermentation, and cheese making. These show off Sligo’s deep food traditions15. Neantóg Kitchen Garden School offers small classes on local and sustainable food14. Such places not only offer great food but also connect visitors to Sligo’s special culture.


Sligo’s festivals show a vibrant culture full of music, art, and food. The Sligo Baroque Music Festival happens every September. It offers concerts and workshops, including performances by groups like the London Handel Players in 202016. The festival also joins with The Hawk’s Well Theatre for a free concert on Culture Night16.

The Cairde Sligo Arts Festival is also fascinating. It runs from July 1 to 10 and features SWARM by Cian Kinsella, Breda Larkin, and Deirdre Griffin17. This festival is known for its creative energy, like the Lullaby Babies music for kids17. Big events like Electric Picnic and Castlepalooza highlight Ireland’s love for music, from rock to trance, making lasting memories regardless of the weather18.

Sligo’s festivals invite us to celebrate its lively culture. Whether it’s the quiet respect at historical sites or cheering at modern concerts. These events show how art builds a community and connects people. They welcome visitors to enjoy Ireland’s cultural gem. Come and be part of these festivals. Every second is a chance to celebrate what makes Sligo special.


What are the main festivals held in Sligo?

Sligo is home to exciting festivals like the Sligo Live and Yeats International Summer School. It also has many arts and food festivals. These celebrate Sligo’s culture and offer great experiences to everyone.

When is the Sligo Live Festival held?

The Sligo Live Festival runs over a long weekend in late October. It features music from many local and global artists. Shows happen at different places in Sligo.

What can I expect at the Yeats International Summer School?

This Summer School aims to honour W.B. Yeats’s literary work. It’s filled with talks, workshops, and debates about Yeats. It’s perfect for those who love literature to learn and enjoy.

Are there family-friendly festivals in Sligo?

Sligo does have family-friendly events. Places like the Eagles Flying bird sanctuary and the Hawks Well Theatre host fun and educational activities. They are for all family members to enjoy.

Where can I experience traditional music in Sligo?

In Sligo, find traditional music at pubs and cultural events. You’ll hear real Irish music, like lively fiddles and flutes. This music creates a happy, shared space for everyone.

What are some notable arts festivals in Sligo?

The Model arts centre hosts major arts festivals. These include exhibitions, learning activities, and community gatherings. They highlight the area’s creativity and diverse art.

How can I experience Sligo’s culinary festivals?

To know Sligo’s food scene, join the culinary festivals. Seafood fests show off fresh marine food. There are also markets and food trails for a full taste of Sligo’s fare.

What kind of historical festivals are held in Sligo?

Historical events in Sligo celebrate ancient sites like Carrowmore. They offer a link to Ireland’s past and honour the county’s heritage.

Are there opportunities to buy tickets in advance for events?

Yes, you can get tickets early for many Sligo festivals, including the Sligo Live. Pre-buying ensures you get to enjoy the music and shows without worries.

What community events take place in Sligo?

Sligo’s community events are about local involvement and tradition. They cover modern affairs, arts, and are often held at The Model. They show Sligo’s close-knit community.

How can I learn more about specific festival dates and schedules?

Check the official websites and local tourism pages for the latest festival info in Sligo. They offer details and planning guidance for your visit.

Source Links

  1. https://myirishcousin.com/things-to-see-and-do-in-sligo/
  2. https://www.viberate.com/festival/sligo-live-festival/
  3. http://www.sligoarts.ie/FestivalsandEvents/SligoSummerFestival/
  4. http://www.sligoarts.ie/FestivalsandEvents/SligoLiveFestival/
  5. https://www.independent.ie/regionals/sligo/news/the-enduring-appeal-of-sligos-yeats-international-summer-school/a592627976.html
  6. https://www.eventbrite.com/o/the-yeats-international-summer-school-8221684731
  7. https://www.poetryireland.ie/writers/articles/the-wb-yeats-international-summer-school
  8. http://www.sligoarts.ie/FestivalsandEvents/SligoFestivals/
  9. https://www.sligo.ie/visit/annual-events/
  10. https://www.sligo.ie/queenmaevefestival/
  11. https://blog.mcneelamusic.com/the-ultimate-guide-to-2024s-summer-trad-events/
  12. https://www.independent.ie/entertainment/full-sligo-live-2022-events-guide-robert-plant-gavin-james-tommy-tiernan-paul-brady-and-more/42085873.html
  13. https://www.viberate.com/artist/sligo-rags/
  14. https://www.sligo.ie/visit-sligo-taste-of-sligo/
  15. https://greensideup.ie/so-sligo-2014-food-festival/
  16. https://www.sligobaroquefestival.com/
  17. https://www.cairdefestival.com/news
  18. https://www.goldenplec.com/review-temple-house-music-festival-ballymote-sligo-

Healing Spirit festival takes place at Drummany Spirit, Milltown, Cavan, Ireland on the 4rd to 5th August 2024. Our festival is run by our small community group, Drummany Spirit, is family and child friendly and is alcohol and drug free. This boutique festival features a large lineup of live music, plus a large array of holistic events and practices including sweat lodges, yoga classes, movement meditation (ecstatic dance), pranayama/breathwork, meditation; plus alternative healing and therapies, crafts, art, drumming circles and talks by leading authorities on personal and spiritual growth, sustainability, conscious living, and healing.

We are set on beautiful sacred land overlooking Lough Oughter in Cavan. Drummany Spirit is a community group which hosts the festival each year. 2024 is our third year running the festival and it's been a major success so far with new friends from across Ireland and abroad attending. You can see the festival lineup here, see photos from previous years here and you can get tickets here (note: the festival has very limited capacity and is almost sold out) .