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Galway Things to Do – Attractions & Must See

SmarterTravel

Galway Things to Do

An eclectic mix of art, music, and tradition, many consider Galway the “most Irish” of Irish cities.

Walk

In Town – Plenty of shops,  pubs, and restaurants line the streets of Galway and make for an enjoyable walk on a nice day.

The Riverwalk – An excellent promenade runs alongside the Corrib River from the Salmon weir down to Bridge Street. Along with ducks and swans, you’ll see plenty of wild birds here and there.

Guided Tours – For a tour that covers both history and current events, take a Galway City walking tour.

The Canal – For an interesting and relaxing stroll, follow the walkways that run alongside Galway’s canal system.

Galway Bay – Be sure to walk down to Galway Bay. It’s windy there, but also quiet and a nice break from the crowded streets of the city.

Sightsee

The Burren – The Burren’s rocky landscape resembles the moon. It hosts a collection of prehistoric monuments, including several small dolmens.

Eyre Square – In 1964, John F. Kennedy gave a speech here just a few months before his assassination. In 1965 the city renamed it the Kennedy Memorial Park, but everyone still calls it Eyre Square. In the summer, the park attracts a motley collection of hipsters, backpackers, and young lovers.

Lynch’s Castle – Standing since medieval times, the formidable Lynch Castle dates back to about 1500. Sometimes known as the “Town Castle”, it demonstrates an excellent example of a medieval fortified house.

Galway Cathedral – Opened in 1965, the Cathedral of Our Lady Assumed into Heaven and Saint Nicholas holds the distinction of being the youngest stone cathedral in Europe. Inside you’ll find impressive cut stone, wood carvings, and wall paintings.

Pubs – Of course, you must go to a pub. Actually, you should try a different pub every night. Some have better food than others, but they all have a great atmosphere and plenty of friendly locals.

Day Trips

Connemara – One of the most popular day trips from Galway goes to Connemara. The twelve Bens (mountains) rise up between the peat bogs and dominate the landscape. If you have a car, take a drive around the sky road loop for more stunning scenery.

Cliffs of Moher – About six miles long, and 600 feet straight down, the Cliffs of Moher will take your breath away. As one traveler put it “I think they’re the most magnificent stretch of cliffs I’ve even seen.”

Aran Island – Take a day trip to the beautiful Aran Islands. Drive 45 minutes to Inis Mor, and the take the 20-minute ferry across. Make sure to rent a bike.

Dunguaire Castle – Built in 1520, this picturesque castle situated on the shores of Galway Bay has been completely restored.

Editor’s Note: The information contained on this page was compiled using real traveler reviews about things to do in Galway.

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