March is a month where everything is shifting. Winter is turning into spring, snow is melting, and flowers are blooming. There are many festivals, parades, holidays, and events happening in March in the USA. If you're planning a trip around one of these big days, be sure to plan ahead and be prepared for large crowds and many tourists.
Easter, and celebrations preceding Lent, are celebrated on the first Sunday after the full Moon that occurs on or just after the vernal equinox. So sometimes these holidays are in March, but not always.
In addition to these fun events, many college students in the United States have their spring breaks in March. Popular beaches and cities in Florida and California will be full of young tourists looking to take a break from their studies. If you'd like to avoid the crowds, you might want to avoid the classic spring break hubs such as Miami, Los Angeles, and Daytona Beach.
Mardi Gras/Fat Tuesday and the Beginning of Lent (February or March)
Mardi Gras (also called Carnival or Fat Tuesday) festivities are plentiful in the USA, but most especially in New Orleans. New Orleans holds the biggest and most popular celebration before Lent. On the Tuesday before Ash Wednesday, which marks the official beginning of Lent, Christians celebrate and party before a 40-day solemn period. Mardi Gras is usually in February but sometimes falls in March depending on the year.
Though New Orleans has the biggest Mardi Gras celebration, there are plenty of fun events and parades for the holiday happening across the country in cities like Mobile, St. Louis, Orlando, and more.
Easter (March or April)
While the United States is a secular country, some businesses and schools will close on the Good Friday before Easter Sunday or the Monday after (Easter Monday). While Mardi Gras marks the beginning of Lent, Easter marks the end of it, which of course calls for another big celebration.
One of the nation’s biggest Easter-related festivities is the White House Easter Egg Roll, held on the South Lawn of the White House. Tickets to the Easter Egg Roll are free but limited and available only via a lottery system on the White House website. The date of Easter each year is not set and is sometimes in April.
National Cherry Blossom Festival
One of spring's most glorious events sees the blooming of hundreds of pink and white cherry blossom trees around the Tidal Basin of the National Mall in Washington, D.C.
While the trees are the main attraction for visitors, organizers of the National Cherry Blossom Festival also plan a Japanese cultural festival, a parade, and numerous art and food events throughout the capital to coincide with the blooms. March is also a great time to visit Washington D.C. before the heat hits in the summer.
The Cherry Blossom Festival typically begins in mid- to late-March and runs through April.
St. Patrick’s Day (March 17)
Many people in the United States are of Irish ancestry, while others simply like to celebrate the Irish holiday with traditional Irish food, music, and pints of Guinness.
No matter where you are in the United States on St. Patrick’s Day, you are bound to find a celebration and lots of "wearing o’ the green."
St. Patrick's Day is a big holiday for Irish Americans—and Americans of all nationalities actually. Celebrations tend to include parades, Irish dancing, and lots of drinking.