•Experience Oyster mania at “ Hillsborough International Oyster Festival, The Clarenbridge Oyster Festival and the Galway International Oyster & Seafood Festival”
All India, 31 August, 2016 : They say native Irish oysters are the best in the world, but to find out if it’s true you’ve simply got to do a taste test at one of the fabulous festivals running through the island’s annual oyster season.
First to kick off the oyster mania this year is the Hillsborough International Oyster Festival in County Down in Northern Ireland, an opportunity to sample the famous meaty Dundrum Bay Oysters.
Running from 30th August to 4th September, this one includes the Oysters Masters Golf Day, the Pearl and Oyster Ball, a soapbox derby, a gourmet food market and the World Oyster Eating Championships— the number to beat is currently 233 oysters in three minutes.
The Clarenbridge Oyster Festival (9th to 11th September) takes place just south of Galway City, in a picturesque village at the mouth of Dunbulcan Bay.
The villagers will tell you that theirs are the best oysters in the world, formed in a perfect mixture of fresh and sea water. To celebrate the start of their season the village throws a three-day party full of music, dancing and, of course, oysters.
However, for one of the biggest events in Ireland’s social calendar it’s got to be the Galway International Oyster & Seafood Festival, the world’s longest running oyster fest and one of the most internationally recognised Irish events.
Running in Galway City over the last weekend of September (22nd to 25th September) , this boisterous celebration of all things oyster involves not just sensational seafood, traditionally washed down with champagne or Guinness, but a major party of celebrity cook offs, music, street entertainment and parades.
Central to the festivities is the World Oyster Opening Championships where ’shuckers’ from all over the globe compete to win the coveted title – undoubtedly a world-class event and a great time of year for visiting Galway.
Celebrating its 62nd year , during this popular food festival, you can expect to experience a wide variety of tantalising events to enjoy from seafood trails, oyster hot spots, oyster opening (shucking) championships including the Oyster ‘Olympics’ or World Oyster Opening Championship, foodie talks & tasting events in some of Galway’s finest restaurants, food provenance tours, sample delights at the intimate food village at The Festival Marquee, a Mardi Gras style Gala Event through the streets of Galway, Best Dressed Lady competition, the Tribal Oyster Feast Off oyster eating competition along with family activities, live music, cooking demonstrations, ‘Hot Oyster Awards’ cooking challenge and more.