Great for: Nightlife & Pubs, Historic City Walks, Food Lovers, Culture & Festivals
Galway is one of the brightest and most intriguing jewels of the West of Ireland. It marks the halfway point on the Wild Atlantic Way and is the only city on the entire 2500km route. The city is wild and bohemian, and at the same time full of culture, artistry, exceptional food and music. As well as being a popular seaside destination with long sandy beaches, Galway is also a thriving and cosmopolitan city centre.
It is always a joy to explore with its wonderful cobbled streets, colourful shop facades, and its offbeat café/bar culture. Galway is also well known for its proliferation of festivals and civic events, with huge crowds gathering for the much-celebrated Galway International Arts Festival, the craic of the Galway Races, the spectacular Macnas Halloween Parade and numerous other events throughout the year. Ireland’s great traditions of hospitality have their place in the city too, with turf fires and traditional music featuring in many of the city’s pubs.
Galway City has some of the best nightlife Ireland has to offer. The city offers something to cater for every taste.
You can find cosy, traditional Irish pubs complete with nightly trad music and beautiful pints of creamy Guinness. Or if that’s not your style, the city boasts a range of vibrant, trendy cocktail bars and hip wine bars.
Galway might be a little sleepier than other cities by day, but it really comes alive at night. The bustling patrons of Quay Street bars spill out onto the cobbled, medieval street at night. This is an experience to never forget. A warm summer night, cool pints of beer and surrounded by the craic-loving natives of Galway City.
Galway City’s maritime location makes it a perfect stop-off if seafood’s your thing!
Galway boasts its own International Oyster Festival at the end of September, where you can sample the best the county has to offer.
Maybe oysters and mussels aren’t your thing! Well, don’t fear. You can stop off at the timeless classic ‘McDonaghs‘ for a traditional serving of battered fish and chips. The perfect cure if you treated yourself to a few too many Guinness the night before!
Galway is a city steeped in history. The cobbled, medieval streets feature constant reminders of the historic grounds the city is built on.
The main attractions include: Spanish Arch, Lynch’s Castle, The Hall of the Red Earl, Galway Cathedral, and last-but-not-least, the historic fishing village of the Claddagh – which gives the docks their iconic look.
Galway is known locally as ‘the city of a thousand festivals’.
It almost doesn’t matter when you visit Galway, as you’re likely to catch at least one festival in Ireland’s cultural capital.
No matter what your interests are, Galway will have a festival for you.
The major ones to look out for (which usually happen during summer) are:
Galway International Arts Festival (mid-July)
Galway Races (late-July)
Galway Film Fleadh (early-July)