7 Hidden Gems to discover and things to do off the beaten path in Galway City; from food tours, markets and experiences that enrich and enhance your stay in Galway.
Charlie Byrnes Bookshop – A hidden treasure trove full of gems to be discovered. Brimming with books on every imaginable subject, Charlie Byrne’s is Ireland’s best-loved independent bookshop, a book lovers paradise with a higgledy-piggledy layout and somewhere you may need an afternoon to browse at your leisure.
Off the beaten track, located in Áras na Gael on Dominick Street, the Tiny Traders Market is not to be missed every Saturday. With a selection of vendors who stock authentic, handmade local crafts, creatively repurposed materials, and who make choices intentionally with both individual and eco-wellbeing in mind. From local Irish traditions and language to international artists sharing their skills, Tiny Traders is an amazing community of vendors and a perfect place for a Saturday shopping trip in town.
Galway is fast becoming a mecca for foodies – with a host of new restaurants and local food producers. If you don’t have time to try them all, make sure to book in on a Galway Food Tour, which takes just 2 hours. During the tour, you will get to experience a taste from artisan producers, cheese makers, creative beer projects, artisan chocolatiers, traditional family-run businesses to young entrepreneurs with devotion and commitment to showcasing the best of Irish produce. Book Your Galway Food Tour.
Throughout the summer months, every Monday to Friday in June, July and August, ‘Tunes in the Church’ takes place in St. Nicholas Church, just behind Shop St.
An acoustic, authentic and personal concert in spine-tingling surroundings. The Interactive involvement between the audience and the performers is central to the experience and you get to engage with some top traditional musicians in a unique way.
Our neighbours on Quay Street, Coffeewerk + Press is well worth a visit. A quirky little coffee shop, with a design gallery upstairs – a space created to showcase the overlap between Irish and international design and art with the perfect cup of coffee! Check out Artwerk Press for their story. Great to watch people go by and listen to the vibrant busker music outside.
The story of Ireland’s famous Claddagh ring tells of pirates, lost love and great romance. Thomas Dillon’s Claddagh Ring Museum, located here on Quay St, tells the story in fine fashion. They’ve also got curious exhibits of stone age axes, famine memorabilia and an interesting photographic collection of old Galway.
7. Buskers and Street Performers
The centre of Galway City is pedestrianised and the perfect to amble down if you want to experience some of the street performances and buskers. Throughout the summer months, the city buzzes and its energy and creativity are evident with so much to see and enjoy.
Just a short ferry ride from Galway Bay, the Aran Islands are made up of Inis Mor, Inis Meain and Inis Oirr. On the islands, the pace of life is set to leisurely. Getting around is easy, whether by foot or bicycle. With winding roads, historic ruins and cosy /pubs, the islands are a little slice of Irish heaven. Whether you wish to bask on sandy beaches, sailboard, or just walk the quiet winding byways, the Aran Islands have it all.
Easily done in a day trip, with buses to the ferry port available from Eyre Square. Pop into any of the Aran Island Ferries ticket offices
Located smack-bang in the centre of Galway, on Quay St.
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