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When you think of the most Irish city on the island, Galway immediately springs to mind. A coastal town driven by a lively traditional culture and a vibrant Gaeltacht (Irish-speaking), Galway city embodies Ireland at its best. Galway never sleeps, buzzing with the energy of the university at its heart and a calendar of festivals and events that offers something exciting for even the fussiest visitor.
For a place that embodies all that is different and wonderful about Galway City, Shop Street ticks all the boxes. The beating heart of Galway city life, this pedestrianised thoroughfare pulses with the energy of students, shoppers, visitors, buskers, workers, and all the characters that make Galway the exciting place it is. Browse the eclectic mix of kitschy shops and enjoy the street entertainment before you arrive at the magnetic pubs of adjoining Quay Street.
Clear your diary for the last week in July - the Galway Races is the place to be even if you don’t know one end of a horse from the other. Both veteran race-goers and people who simply enjoy a good atmosphere make the journey to Ballybrit every summer for this unique racing festival. It runs for seven consecutive days at Galway Racecourse from the last Monday in July.
July is festival season and competition for the best event is fierce, but the Galway Arts Festival wins hands-down. Its inclusive, accessible, and genuinely creative atmosphere makes it stand out in a field where competitors boast about their dedication to both street and “high” art but fail to deliver. Ireland’s biggest festival, it celebrates both international and Irish artists and showcases virtually every music genre, indoor and outdoor theatre, visual arts, dance, and comedy.
Where the River Corrib meets the sea in Galway city, you’ll find the historic Spanish Arch. Built in 1584 as an extension of the city walls to safeguard the quays, the arch only became known by its current name in the 19th century, when strong merchant links were established with Spain. It was partly destroyed in 1755, when a tsunami created by the Lisbon earthquake struck the walls. Today it is a popular site for buskers, and it is a natural magnet for both locals and visitors on fine day.
Galway's central public square is a wide, green area scattered with sculptures and pathways that draws amiable crowds virtually all year round. On the southwestern side of Eyre Square is a pedestrianised area lined with seating. The eastern side is dominated by the stately Victorian elegance of the Hotel Meyrick (formerly the Great Southern Hotel).
The Claddagh is an old fishing village dating from the 5th century that connects the Spanish Arch to Salthill. Its fishermen sold fish to the people of Galway at the Spanish Arch, and, as recently as the early 20th century, the Claddagh was an independent Irish speaking community ruled by its own king. The area is probably best known today for the Claddagh Ring.
Forget any ideas you may have about dusty, boring centres of learning: Galway City Museum is a bright and invitingly modern building set right in the heart of Galway, next to the renowned Spanish Arch. This thought-provoking facility presents an imaginative range of permanent and touring exhibitions centred on craft, archaeology, local history, and art. Children will enjoy the special activity sheets, designed to help them discover more about the items and exhibitions on show.
Fans of traditional Irish music already know that Galway City is a hub for some of the finest performances of this art form that you will ever encounter. The Irish music scene is exceptionally well developed here, with some of the most talented and dedicated performers delivering superb entertainment across the city. Some pubs with strong reputations for regular quality sessions include The Quays, Taaffes, The Crane, and Tigh Coili.
Tucked away in the heart of Galway’s medieval district, Kirwan’s Lane originally stood within the city walls, and is named after one of Galway's fourteen "tribes" - the families who controlled the town for many centuries. Now sensitively restored, Kirwan’s Lane is a lively spot of tempting cafes, shops, and restaurants. You’ll find part of the “Slate Nunnery,” granted to the Dominican nuns in 1686 by John Kirwan, and nearby is the site of a tiny 18th-century theatre where patriot Wolfe Tone played.
0.9km from Galway City
Within walking distance of Galway City and Salthill, each of these 3-star apartments has three bedrooms and can accommodate five people with ease. The kitchen area is bright and spacious and includes such facilities as a microwave, tumble dryer, and washing machine.
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1.8km from Galway City
Stay at a 4-star, 2-bedroom self catering apartment in the heart of Salthill in Galway, less than 5 minutes' drive or 10 minutes' walk from Galway City Centre. Each apartment offers the finest accommodation, with comfortable furnishings and modern appliances, including direct-dial phone, broadband Internet access, hair dryer, cable TV, video/CD player, fully fitted kitchen with washer/dryer and cooking facilities. The self catering properties are also electrically heated throughout.
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2km from Galway City
This luxury 2-bedroom self catering apartment is situated in Salthill, with panoramic views of Galway Bay from the living room.
Fully equipped with all mod cons, it makes the ideal base for anyone wishing to take a break in the west of Ireland.
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4.5km from Galway City
These charming self catering apartments are located very close to Galway City, in the scenic area of Ballybrit. Each of the 19 apartments contains two bedrooms, one of which is en-suite. The complex is GMIT-approved campus accommodation. All self catering properties are well equipped with every modern convenience. A balcony or patio allows you to enjoy the sights and sounds of this unique place. With the attraction of Galway City nearby, these properties are ideal for families, and there is ample parking.
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5.2km from Galway City
Enjoy the convenience of a three-bedroom apartment in a private apartment complex on the western outskirts of Galway City. They provide the perfect location, whether you want to enjoy the summer festivals in Galway city or escape to the majestic scenery of Connemara and the Aran islands.
0.8km from Galway City
This wonderful self catering apartment complex is located in upper Salthill, overlooking Grattan strand in Galway city. Perfectly situated on the seafront, the self catering properties make an ideal, family-friendly escape, where you can allow the fresh sea air to blow away the worries and stresses of everyday life.
1.3km from Galway City
These superb 3-star self catering properties are located in the Headford Road, just 10 minutes' walk from Galway City. Each self catering apartment and townhouse has four comfortable bedrooms. Bed linen and towels are supplied free. Enjoy a leisurely breakfast in the beautiful dining area. Take a stroll in the pleasant landscaped surroundings. If you would like to capture some of Galway's countryside, take a journey to Connemara. Fall in love with the beauty that is the Aran Islands. To take advantage of the clear blue surf, look no further than the nearby suburb of Salthill.
This pretty 3-star holiday rental is within walking distance of vibrant Galway City and the seaside town of Salthill in County Galway. The two-bedroom property has a kitchen with all modern conveniences, an inviting dining area, and a relaxing sitting room. A cot can be provided.
0.7km from Galway City
Enjoy the convenience of delightful self catering accommodation in the centre of Galway City, only a few minutes walk from bustling Quay Street and Shop Street.This new development of two-bedroom self catering apartments is ideally located, with secure underground parking available to guests.
2.1km from Galway City
Situated in the heart of Salthill, this newly-built apartment complex offers guests luxurious accommodation, views over Galway Bay, and the convenience of lively restaurants and pubs right on your doorstep.
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