What to see in Galway and its county, a city that connects Ireland with Spain

In the west of Ireland is the city of Galway, a small but beautiful town with a great university atmosphere and that is very close to the main attraction of the country, the Cliffs of Moher, making it a good base to visit this wonder of nature as well as the Connemara region.

This city has always had important ties with Spain thanks to the trade relations between the two countries and the historical alliances in the wars against England.

If you want to know what to see in Galway, here we make a tour to get to know it.

What to see in Galway in one day

Ireland - Galway - Shop StreetOne day is enough to visit Galway. All points of interest are very close so it will not take you long.

A tour of Galway can start at its most central square, Eyre Square, where there is a park dedicated to JFKennedy.

From there starts the pedestrian area of ​​the city including Shop Street, the most famous street in Galway and where the life of the city is concentrated.

Along Shop Street we find numerous shops, in some you can buy authentic Celtic jewelry, and restaurants, as well as monuments such as Lynch Castle, whose appearance resembles a castle but is now a bank. He belonged to the Lynch family, one of the 12 tribes of Galway.

Ireland - Galway - Spanish ArchAt one corner of the street is St Nicholas’ Church, which has the honor of being the largest medieval church in Ireland, founded by the Lynch family in 1320 and even visited by Christopher Columbus in 1477.

At the end of the pedestrian zone, reaching the Corrib River, which runs its last few meters before its mouth, is Spanish Arch.

It is a small remnant of the old Galway wall built in the 16th century and is located next to the Galway City Museum where a journey through the history of the city is made.

From the bridge that crosses the River Corrib you can see the other great religious temple of the city, the Galway Cathedral (its full name is the Catholic Cathedral of Our Lady of the Assumption and Saint Nicholas).

Its dome and its towers are a symbol of the city and it is worth going up to it. Nearby are the Court of Justice and the Old Town Hall, currently a theatre, both from the 19th century.

Other places to see in County Galway

Ireland - Kylemore AbbeyCounty Galway is one of the most beautiful counties in Ireland with many important points of interest.

One of them is the Connemara National Park, which is reached from Galway through a winding road with a lot of traffic but which crosses some spectacular landscapes that you can enjoy.

Along that road you pass through pretty villages like Oughterard, the traditional gateway to Connemara, although a little before you get there you have Aughnanure Castle, a 16th-century castle on the shores of Loch Corrib.

Ireland - RoundstoneIn the Connemara Park you have very beautiful landscapes, which you can enjoy especially from the top of Diamond Hill, which can be reached thanks to a path that is not very complicated.

From above you can even see the lake on which Kylemore Abbey stands, arguably County Galway’s main landmark.

Kylemore Abbey was built in the 19th century on the site of a castle and today is one of the most visited places on the island.

Its gardens and neo-Gothic church are a must, as is the Stone of Desires, which consists of a huge triangular-shaped rock. Legend has it that if you turn your back on it, throw a stone and it touches the vertex of the triangle, then your wish will come true.

Ireland - Connemara - SheepNearby is Clifden, a small but very friendly town from which the Sky Road starts, one of the most famous routes in Ireland that you can travel by car.

From there you can return to Galway along the coast, passing through different towns and admiring beaches and cliffs that will not leave you indifferent.

One of these towns is Claddagh, one of the oldest fishing villages in Ireland situated on the other side of the River Corrib as it flows into Galway and famous for the Claddagh Ring, a symbol of love, friendship and loyalty.

And finally we want to highlight the Aran Islands, some islands that are located in front of Galway Bay that have a special charm and in which you can discover some aspects of traditional Irish life if you visit them. The famous Aran sweaters originate from here.

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