Top 65 attractions to explore in Galway
County Galway is a county in Ireland. It is in the West of Ireland, taking up the south of the province of Connacht. There are several Irish-speaking areas in the west of the county. The traditional county includes, and is named for, the city of Galway, but the city and county now have separate local authorities: Galway City Council administers the urban area, while the rest of the county is administered by Galway County Council.
An Trá Mhór is a long sheltered sandy beach situated at Inverin, Co. Galway. It is a whie sandy beach with clear water and great views of the coastline. This beach has a gradual slope into the water, making it a great place to swim. There is a car park and toilet facilities are provided.
Ardoileán, is a small island off the northwest coast of Connemara in County Galway, Ireland. It was once the site of an early Irish monastic community. It is one of thirty-odd islands off the west coast of Ireland, between Inishtrahull and Clear Island, which were settled by hermits and monastic communities in the early Christian period.
This restored 13th-century fortification was originally built by Meiler de Bermingham and is located within the heritage town of Athenry. The imposing three-storey hall-keep survives from the mid-thirteenth century. It is solidly impressive from the outside, although the interior was simply built, containing only a hall at first-floor level and dark storerooms below.
Athenry Heritage Centre is the ideal starting point to discover the best preserved medieval town in Ireland. Its exhibits include the torture dungeon, models of the medieval town, storyboards and a replica street of medieval crafts. You can experience this history with interactive exhibits of weaponry, armour, dressing up in medieval costume and Have-A-Go Archery.
Aughnanure Castle was built in the 16th century as a stronghold of the O'Flaherty clan, and is renowned for its unusual double bawn. The castle was built by the O'Flaherty family in the 16th century, one of Connacht's most notable lord families. Aughnanure is one of over 200 tower houses in County Galway, constructed mainly by Gaelic and Anglo-Norman land owning families. The tower lies close to the shores of Lough Corrib, and translates to "the field of the yews" in Irish.
Bencorr at 711 metres, is the 82nd–highest peak in Ireland on the Arderin scale, and the 102nd–highest peak on the Vandeleur-Lynam scale. It is the second-tallest mountain of the Twelve Bens range, after Benbaun 729 metres; it lies close to Benbaun, separated only by the third-highest mountain in the range of Bencollaghduff 696 metres (2,283 ft), and the col of Maumina.
Carraigin Castle is a 13th century lakeside castle in seven acres of private parkland on a lake shore. It was surrounded by forests with rich parkland, the castle offers a variety of activities to its visitors. Boating and fishing is available close to the castle along with pleasant woodland walking, cycling and horse-riding.
Claregalway Castle is a fully restored 15th century Anglo-Norman tower house. The castle is the original home of the Brian Boru Harp and it was Situated on the banks of the River Clare, in Claregalway village. You can walk the corridors of time and follow the history of the Castle from Norman times to its current restoration, experiencing the masterful woodwork of the great hall and the stonework that has stood against time.
Clifden Castle was built by John d'Arcy in a Gothic Revival style between 1812 and 1815. Overlooking the Clifden Bay, the castle features a round tower to the southeast, as well as two round turrets, a square tower and the entry tower. Entering through the large medieval gateway, you will see a number of standing stone erects. Uninhabited after 1894 it fell into disrepair. In 1935, ownership passed to a group of tenants, who were to own it jointly, and it quickly became a ruin.
Clonfert Cathedral is a cathedral of the Church of Ireland in Clonfert. It stands on the grounds where St Brendan founded a monastery in the 6th century. The monastery was a thriving centre of learning for centuries and at one time it is estimated there were 3,000 monks based at Clonfert. The current building was erected in the 12th century at the site of an earlier 6th century church founded by Saint Brendan, which was associated with a monastery he founded and at which he was buried.
The Connemara Giant, known as Conn of the Sea, is said to be protector of Connemara. The statue was created by Joyce’s Craft Shop, located across the road, “for no apparent reason”. It is believed that if you touch the hand of the giant you will be blessed with the knowledge of his ancient tribe.
This is a part of the Wild Atlantic Way is a scenic route that will take you in a loop around beautiful North West Connemara. It was blessed with its ever changing landscape, presents visitors with the most spectacular mountain views, mist covered lakes, pre-historic bogs, shady glens and remote, unspoilt beaches facing out towards the wild Atlantic.
A majestic national park covering some 3,000 hectares of scenic mountains, expansive bogs, glorious grasslands and enchanting woodlands. 500 metres high, Diamond Hill rises above the small village of Letterfrack. This is one of the finest hikes in the country. There are many remnants of human habitation within the park. There is a 19th-century graveyard as well as 4,000-year-old megalithic court tombs. Much of the land was once part of the Kylemore Abbey estate.
The Coole Park is one of Ireland’s most spectacular nature reserve covering approximately 400 hectares of wetland and woodlands located in Gort. The park is in a low–lying karstic limestone area characterised by seasonal lakes, known as turloughs, which are almost unique to Ireland. The most unique features of Coole Park are the turloughs which are said to be the best examples of turloughs in the world.
Derryclare, is the 119th–highest peak in Ireland on the Arderin scale, and the 145th–highest peak on the Vandeleur-Lynam scale. This is a popular viewpoint for visitors to the area and a great place for photo opportunities. The Derryclare Lough on its southern slopes is a scenic location in Connemara, while the Derryclare Wood, on its eastern slopes, contains a Statutory Nature Reserve.
Derryclare Lough is a lake in Connemara, Ireland. This lake is recognizable by its islet located in the middle, and covered with trees. The lake is a popular scenic location, and extensively photographed, and offers views directly into the Glencoaghan Valley of the Twelve Bens and the peaks of the Glencoaghan Horseshoe.
Devilsmother is a 645-metre-high mountain in Connemara, Ireland. It was located at the head of Killary Harbour, overlooking the Western Way long-distance path. It sits on the border between County Galway and County Mayo. A good trekking destination and also there are so many other options too.
Diamond Hill is an isolated peak, situated beside the village of Letterfrack, in the northwest corner of the Twelve Bens in the Connemara National Park in Galway, Ireland. Despite its moderate size and isolated position, Diamond Hill is a popular peak with tourists due to its paths and boarded mountain trail, and relative ease of access, together with well-regarded views of the core Twelve Bens range, and western Connemara.
Dogs Bay is a horseshoe shaped bay with more than a mile long stretch of white sandy beach. It backs on to Gurteen Bay, and together they form a tombolo which juts out into the Atlantic Ocean. The wild headland which stretches out into the Atlantic between the two beaches is an area of great beauty and is a fantastic walk where you will be surrounded by water on three sides.
Dún Conor is a stone ringfort and National Monument located on Inishmaan, Ireland, measuring about 69 m N-S and 35 m E-W; although smaller than Dún Aengus, it has thicker walls, up to 6 m in places. The fort is believed to date back to the first or second millennium BC.
Map of attractions in Galway