Burns Night Celebrations
Each year on 25 January, Scots around the world celebrate Robert Burns, the famous Bard.
Haggis, whisky, poetry and ceilidh dancing is the perfect recipe for a Burns Night celebration. Typically, a Burns Supper includes a gathering, before the haggis is piped in and the host performs Address to a Haggis. The meal – which includes haggis, neeps and tatties, and cranachan, clootie dumpling or a tipsy laird for dessert, often followed by a cheeseboard, is enjoyed widely across the world.
Traditionally, the first Burns recital is performed after the meal, followed by the Immortal Memory – a speech highlighting the work of Burns. Other toasts may also follow, including A Toast to the Lassies, followed by a Reply to the Toast to the Lassies. Entertainment includes recitals of Burns poems and songs including A Red, Red Rose and Tam O’ Shanter.
A vote of thanks concludes the evening, followed by a rendition of Auld Lang Syne, where guests come together with a parting song.
We’ve created a list of some of the top events across Scotland and London this January. If you’re travelling with Caledonian Sleeper, enjoy a meal of Haggis, Neeps and Tatties in our Club Car in celebration of Robert Burns.
Ghillie Dhu will be celebrating the great bard with a Rabbie Burns Experience until Sunday 26 January. Greeted with a dram on arrival, the haggis will be piped into the room with a Robert Burns reading and toast, with live Scottish folk music throughout the night and a ceilidh to round off the celebrations.
The Royal Yacht Britannia will be hosting a traditional Burns Supper on the weekend of 24 and 25 January. The supper will be prepared in the original Royal Galleys, with Scottish music played throughout the evening.
Each year, Oran Mor in Glasgow’s West End hosts one of the city’s biggest Burns Night celebrations. Led by BAFTA award-winning actor Iain Robertson, guests will be piped in, served a three course Scottish menu and will include performances by Iain, Dave Anderson and friends.
Under an hour from Glasgow, Alloway is the birthplace of Robert Burns, so it is no surprise that the town has a big celebration for Burns Night. Burns On the Beach takes place on Ayr beach, with winter bonfires, an aerial light show, poetry path and moving images at The Watchful boat. The event will launch Scotland’s Year of Coast and Waters programme in South Ayrshire and is free.
Celebrate Burns Night on the River Lee at Burns on the Barge. Toast the haggis and enjoy a traditional supper, with live music and poetry readings.
Inverness’ very own Burns Club holds a Burns Supper each year, with a meal and speakers taking each of the toasts and recitals.