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10 Things to Do in Galway

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Tucked alongside the Atlantic Ocean next to sweeping bays, craggy inlets and some of the rarest and most precious wild terrain in the world, County Galway is an obvious choice for your Wild Atlantic Way getaway.

From the buzzing streets and vibrant festivals of Galway City itself to coastal idylls, wide open skies and unforgettable island escapes, Galway is one county that knows how to make the most of its charms.

Here are 10 ways to see the best of it:

  • Connemara National Park, County Galway

1. Aran islands

Head northwest out of Galway Bay and travel back in time to an Ireland before mobile phones and social media. The Aran Islands are home to a rich and unique way of life and a natural, cultural and linguistic heritage that leaves a lasting impression on every type of visitor.

2. Salthill

When the sun is out in Galway, there’s no better place to be than at Salthill. Sheltered among the many beachy coves along this Blue Flag-designated shoreline, you can sunbathe, explore among the rocks, join the swimmers in the lapping waves, or simply relax.

3. Galway City Museum

The fascinating artifacts and ever-changing exhibitions housed within the Galway City Museum make this cultural institution a must-see. Perched on the banks of the River Corrib, it’s the perfect place to spend a day learning how the city was shaped over the centuries.

The Aran Islands, , County Galway

4. Clifden

Northwest of Galway City, the beating heart of Connemara welcomes visitors with its array of shops, pubs and eateries nestled between the Twelve Pins Mountains and the Atlantic Ocean. Don’t miss the nearby Sky Road, one of Ireland’s most impressively scenic drives.

5. Connemara National Park

Thrumming with wildlife and a treasure trove of prehistoric sites, the Connemara National Park is easily one of Ireland’s most beautiful. A bird watcher’s delight, its 2,957 hectares of mountain, forest and grassland boast three unmissable trails that with scenery in spades.

6. Galway City

Creative yet relaxed, dynamic yet inclusive, the ‘City of the Tribes’ is a must-visit cultural hub in Ireland. As famous for its fantastic food and nightlife as for its cutting-edge arts, music, design and theatre scenes, there’s no end to the fun you can have in Galway City.

  • Galway City, County Galway
  • The Galway Races, County Galway
  • Salthill, County Galway

7. Kylemore abbey

Delve into the romance, intrigue and stunning beauty of one of Ireland’s most popular destinations at Kylemore Abbey. Set in Connemara, this former monastery turned visitor attraction is the perfect family day out, with a castle, lush gardens and forest trails to explore.

8. Galway Races

The quintessential Galway experience, the Galway Races is about more than horse racing - it’s a major annual cultural event for locals and visitors alike. Expect music, culinary delights, cutting-edge fashion, and fun for all as one of the longest Irish meets gets underway.

9. Inishbofin

Meaning 'Island of the White Cow', Inishbofin, off the northwest coast of County Galway, is a dream destination for nature lovers, art aficionados, beachcombers, and history buffs alike, with broad sandy beaches, archaeological sites and a buzzing community to explore.

10. Cleggan

Crowning Cleggan Bay, the fishing hub of Cleggan is known for its laid-back pace of life, opportunities for great deep sea angling and its natural splendour. From the pristine waters of the bay to one of the last surviving blanket bogs in Europe, it’s a tranquil haven.

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