The 2024 Australian Celtic Festival celebrating the Year of Ireland & The Isle of Man

Renowned as the premier Celtic event of New South Wales, the Australian Celtic Festival is the only event of its kind in the country to recognise different Celtic nations each year. It also boasts the unique setting of the Australian Standing Stones National Celtic Monument in Glen Innes.

For its 32nd year, the festival will highlight the Celtic nations of Ireland and The Isle of Man over four days from Thursday 2 to Sunday 5 May 2024, with events held both at the festival site and throughout the local township. The event attracts clans and societies, cultural groups, performers, artists, and festivalgoers from all around Australia and the world for a unique celebration of Celtic music, dance, art and culture.

The main event

With performances taking place across three stages, attending the festival is the perfect opportunity to immerse yourself in the rich tapestry of Celtic music and dance as you discover an incredible lineup of artists.  Don’t miss the highly anticipated Australian Celtic Dance Championships on the Saturday, where solo, duo, trio and team dancers will put their best foot forward in a competitive multi-genre fusion of Celtic dance styles.

The celebrations will continue into the night, with two ‘Fire & Feasting’ events taking place, including the ‘Friday Night Ceili’ and ‘Saturday Night of Craic!’, both of which will have you toe-tapping and thigh-slapping as you sing and dance the night away with performers, food trucks, and a bar combining to bring you a Celtic gathering experience like no other.

Throughout the weekend, there will be plenty of live action including horseback jousting tournaments by Nova Hollandia, traditional highland games with the team from Highland Muscle, Celtic wrestling matches, the New England Medieval Arts Society reenactment village, and living history group An T-Arm Albannach. Over at the Celtic Kids Marquee, which is home to the very popular Knight School, the kids will be entertained for hours with loads of fun activities.

There will be a range of food and beverage stalls within the festival grounds, as well as the brand-new Celtic Kitchen Marquee, where you can experience culinary demonstrations and tasting opportunities. As you soak in the festival atmosphere, be sure to browse the array of Celtic-inspired markets and connect with your clan to learn about your Celtic heritage.  After a full day of excitement and adventure, kick back at the Boar and Drum Bar, where you can relax to the music with friends, old and new, beside the outdoor screen.

Events around town

A range of exciting events are set to take place around Glen Innes for visitors and the community, catering to all interests and ages.  On Thursday 2 May, Highlands Hub will welcome all to attend the Celtic Cultural Symposium, featuring a variety of free talks and presentations about all things Celtic. That night, the official 100,000 Welcomes Concert will take place at the Glen Innes and District Services Club, setting the scene for what’s to come at the festival, which is a popular event for early arrivals. It’s also the night of the official prize announcement for The Australian Celtic Cultural Awards exhibition at Gawura Gallery.

The Official Opening Ceremony will take place in Town Hall Square on Friday, and talented buskers will contribute to the lively atmosphere throughout the town over the weekend.  A special Australian Standing Stones parkrun on the Saturday morning will see participants make their way around the iconic festival site, which is home to the highest altitude parkrun in Australia at 1,140m above sea level. The street parade that same morning will see the crowds gather to watch the massed pipe bands, clans, and societies marching in solidarity.

Following the parade, be sure to check out the local businesses getting into the spirit with their Celtic-themed shop window displays for all to admire, as well as those participating in the festival’s very first Celtic Food Trail, inviting you to immerse yourself in the tastes and traditions of Celtic fare. Many of the local pubs, clubs and eateries will also play host to a smorgasbord of Celtic-inspired entertainment.

Free shuttle buses to and from the festival will operate throughout the town all weekend, with stops at the Glen Innes Visitor Information Centre, Glen Innes Showground, and various businesses in town.  So prepare to get your Celt on, kilt up, and experience the exciting festival atmosphere and friendly country hospitality for a Celtic celebration like no other in the beautiful Glen Innes Highlands!

Tickets for all official Australian Celtic Festival events are on sale from 9am (AEDT) 1 March 2024, available online at For more information and updates, visit the website and follow the Australian Celtic Festival on Facebook and Instagram. 

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