Things to do in Galway

Discover castles, cliffs, and crafts in this lively Irish city by the sea where music is always in the air.

Our most recommended things to do in Galway

From Dublin: Cliffs of Moher and Galway City Full-Day Trip

1. From Dublin: Cliffs of Moher and Galway City Full-Day Trip

Witness the dramatic features of the Cliffs of Moher and The Burren on a full-day guided tour of Ireland’s west coast from Dublin. Explore the vibrant city of Galway and enjoy a pub lunch in Doolin. Depart from Dublin and learn about the region from your guide as you go west. Arrive at the Cliffs of Moher and follow the cliff path to the edge for breathtaking views over the Atlantic. Breathe in the ocean wind and hear the waves crashing below you. Explore on your own for 1.5 hours. Get a bird's-eye view of the cliffs and see the underwater caves on a large multimedia screen at the interactive Visitor Centre. Continue to the charming village of Doolin for lunch in a local pub and spot the Aran Islands in the distance along the way. Stop at The Burren for 15 to 20 minutes and get photos of its otherworldly landscape. See rare orchids and admire views of the Baby Cliffs.  Then, explore the vibrant city of Galway, known for its strong tradition of Irish music, language, and dance. You will have around 1 hour to explore on your own. Finish your day with the scenic journey back to Dublin. Expect jolly commentary, anecdotes, and even some Irish music to keep you entertained on the road back to the capital.

Dublin: Cliffs of Moher, Kilmacduagh Abbey & Galway Day Tour

2. Dublin: Cliffs of Moher, Kilmacduagh Abbey & Galway Day Tour

Embark on a guided day trip to discover the iconic Cliffs of Moher by bus. Visit Galway and its stunning surrounding landscape and see famous landmarks, including Dunguaire Castle and Kilmacduagh Monastery. Depart Dublin at 6:45 AM and journey through the flat open plain of the Curragh. Pass the Irish National Stud thoroughbred horse breeding facility as your guide shares a wealth of history and information. Head to the ruins of Kilmacduagh Monastery and its roundhouse—unique for the way it leans over by more than 2 feet. Spend 15-20 minutes here. Then, arrive at the Cliffs of Moher for a view of the Atlantic Ocean and explore on your own for around 1.5 hours. Go to the visitor's centre for the interactive Cliffs of Moher Visitor Experience with a large multimedia screen displaying a bird's-eye view from the cliffs, and a video from the underwater caves. Next, discover the lunar landscapes of The Burren with a 15–20-minute visit and hear about the many secrets of this atypical landscape, home to the warmest ground temperature in Ireland. Arrive in the city of Galway, where you will have around 1 hour to explore on your own. Discover its old-world charm on cobblestone streets that evoke an authentic Ireland of times gone by. Then drive along the coastal route of the Wild Atlantic Way to Kinvara, passing Dunguaire Castle and the 12 Bens mountain range along the way. Return to Dublin and get dropped off at the meeting point at around 7:30 PM to 8:30 PM.

From Galway: Full-Day Cliffs of Moher & The Burren Day Tour

3. From Galway: Full-Day Cliffs of Moher & The Burren Day Tour

Discover the history and landscapes of Ireland on a day trip from Galway with a local driver and guide. Marvel at centuries-old buildings and striking natural features before taking in one of the best views the country has to offer from the Cliffs of Moher. Stop for plenty of photo opportunities. Meet your trained driver and guide outside the Kinlay Hostel. Climb aboard the bus to head to your first stop, Dunguaire Castle on the outskirts of Kinvara. Looking at the 16th-century medieval tower house castle, discover why it is one of the most photographed castles in the whole of Ireland. Then, drive through the unique glaciokarst landscape of the Burren and past the 12th-century Corcomroe Abbey, a Cistercian monastery noted for its distinguished carvings and rich ornamentation. Then, follow the Wild Atlantic Way as it wends its way along the coast of County Clare. Pass Black Head and Fanore Strand, Discovery Points on the Wild Atlantic Way, from where you can marvel at views of the three Aran Islands, Inishmore (Inis Mor), Inishmann (Inis Meain), and Inisheer (Inis Oirr), locking in Galway Bay, and in the distance the Connemara mountains. Next, stop for photos at Doolin pier. Feel the Atlantic wind in your face and admire the power of the sea as it crashes onto the shore. After you've worked up an appetite on the beach, tuck into lunch at the Doolin Hotel (not included). Try any of the local seafood dishes. You won't be disappointed. Then, head to your main stop of the day, the Cliffs of Moher. Enjoy 2 hours at this signature point along the Wild Atlantic Way. Admire one of Ireland's most spectacular sights. Rising 214 meters out of the Atlantic Ocean, the Cliffs of Moher offer one of the most amazing views in Ireland. After the Cliffs of Moher, return to Galway via Lisdoonvarna, famous for its annual matchmaking festival.

From Dublin: Cliffs of Moher and Galway Full-Day Trip with Visitor Centre Entry

4. From Dublin: Cliffs of Moher and Galway Full-Day Trip with Visitor Centre Entry

Witness the dramatic features of the Cliffs of Moher and The Burren on a guided full-day tour of Ireland’s west coast from Dublin. Explore the vibrant city of Galway. Depart from Dublin and learn about the region from your guide as you go west. Arrive at the Cliffs of Moher and follow the cliff path to the edge for breathtaking views over the Atlantic. Breathe in the ocean wind and hear the waves crashing below. Go to the interactive Cliffs of Moher visitor center, where a large multimedia screen displays a bird's-eye view from the cliffs and the underwater caves. Then, stop at The Burren and get photos of its otherworldly landscape. Take in the mighty coastal views on the way to your next stop, the city of Galway. Discover the city's old-world charm on cobblestone streets and stroll through the city’s quaint streets full of music, shops, and typical Irish atmosphere. Finish your day with the journey back to Dublin.

From Galway: Connemara and Cong Full-Day Tour

5. From Galway: Connemara and Cong Full-Day Tour

Experience the wild beauty of Ireland on this full-day tour of Connemara from Galway. Visit Cong Village, which was featured in the classic "The Quiet Man" and Kylemore Abbey. First, stop at Cong Abbey, an Augustinian Abbey dating back to the early 12th century and one of the best examples of medieval ecclesiastical architecture.  Enter Cong Village and explore Cong Woods, stroll around the village that was in the 1950s classic movie, ‘The Quiet Man,’ or feed the ducks on the edge of Lough Corrib - the Republic of Ireland's largest lake. Admire Connemara's hidden valleys upon entering on the Lough Nafooey route.  Continue to Kylemore Abbey and enjoy a lunch break. Entrance into Kylemore Abbey and Gardens is not included in the tour price (purchase discounted entrance tickets from your driver on the day of the tour).  Leaving Kylemore in the late afternoon, drive through Inagh Valley, Maam Cross, and Oughterard. Complete the circuit of Lough Corrib before arriving home to Galway City. 

From Galway: Connemara & Kylemore Abbey Full-Day Guided Tour

6. From Galway: Connemara & Kylemore Abbey Full-Day Guided Tour

Experience the unspoiled natural beauty and rugged landscapes of Connemara on this day trip from Galway. Travel in an airconditioned bus and explore Kylemore Abbey and its elegant gardens with the included entry ticket. Stop in the charming mountain village of Leenane and take in the views of Ireland's only fjord at Killary. Then, get 2 hours to explore Kylemore Abbey and go for a nature walk in the Victorian Walled Gardens. Continue along the coast to the pretty Gaelic-speaking village of An Spideal to take a stroll amongst the many traditional thatched roof homes and admire the beautiful beaches.

Cliffs of Moher Full-Day Tour from Dublin

7. Cliffs of Moher Full-Day Tour from Dublin

Discover the Cliffs of Moher, the number 1 attraction in Ireland on a full-day sightseeing tour. Depart Dublin in the morning by luxury bus, and drive across Ireland to the Atlantic coast, arriving at this natural wonder in the early afternoon. Stop en route at Doolin to experience Ireland's traditional music capital. Pull over for a hearty Irish lunch and pint of Guinness on the lovely western shore, at your own expense. Drive along the dramatic limestone coast and lunar landscape of the Burren to see the only place on earth where the Arctic, Alpine and Mediterranean flora grow together. Look out for 28 different types of orchids in season. Arrive at the cliffs to enjoy a short hike among the staggering rock formations. Soak up the stunning views of the Atlantic Ocean and Aran Islands before entering the interpretive Atlantic Edge Exhibition and award-winning Visitor Center. Visit the set of the movies “Princess Bride” and “Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince.” Capture photos of the scenic spots along the way, including the traditional fishing village of Kinvara and the 15th-century Bunratty Castle.

Cliffs of Moher and Galway Tour in Italian or Spanish

8. Cliffs of Moher and Galway Tour in Italian or Spanish

Discover the beauty of the west of Ireland on this day tour with your expert, guide. Depart from Dublin and cross the country from east to west before arriving in Galway. Here you will have 1.5-hours of free time to explore the lively streets and stroll around the colorful town. Take the river walk to the Cathedral and explore the banks of the river Corrib.  Continue your journey and pass the pretty villages and castles along Galway Bay. Cross the stony Burren region and admire the curious rocky landscape, on route to the spectacular Cliffs of Moher.  Feel the sea spray at 220 meters high. See puffins and other birds that are almost extinct in the rest of the continent. Spend 2 hours enjoying the scenery and walking along the cliff path. You can visit the visitor center exhibition and the self-service restaurant for lunch. Then, return to Dublin via Limerick through the Obama center.

From Galway: Full-Day Cliffs of Moher & Burren Tour

9. From Galway: Full-Day Cliffs of Moher & Burren Tour

Discover two of Ireland's most spectacular national landmarks on a Cliffs of Moher and Burren Tour from beautiful Galway. Start with a stop in the quaint fishing village of Kinvara to see Ireland’s famous Dunguaire Castle. Visit the rolling hills of The Burren. Discover the Gleninsheen Wedge Tomb, the Poulnabrone Dolmen, and Ballyalban Fairy Fort. Pass through Kilfenora, home to the famous Celtic Crosses, and Lisdoonvarna, home to the world’s famous matchmaking festival. Make your way to the coastal village of Doolin for a lunch stop before visiting the 200-meter high, 8km long Cliffs of Moher. Return to Galway via the Coast Road and make a short stop at the lunar-like landscape of the Burren.

From Galway: Aran Islands Day Trip & Cliffs of Moher Cruise

10. From Galway: Aran Islands Day Trip & Cliffs of Moher Cruise

Take a day trip to Inisheer (Inis Oirr) from Galway and discover the ancient churches and castles on the smallest of the Aran Islands. Visit the Cliffs of Moher and admire the coastal scenery. From the meeting point in Galway, get driven south along the Wild Atlantic Way and into the lunar-like Burren region. From there, head to the picturesque fishing village of Doolin where you’ll board the ferry to Inisheer. Once there, explore the island's churches, castles, lighthouses, shipwrecks, cafes, and pubs. Discover one of Ireland's most beautiful beaches and, if you like, take a pony and carriage, hire a bicycle, or stroll the country roads. Stop for a hearty meal at a traditional local pub before arriving at the Cliffs of Moher. You will receive free entry to the cliffs and the eco-sensitive visitor center. Take a stroll along the cliff edge and consider how tiny everything looks from above. Once you depart the cliffs,l take the coast road home, following the Wild Atlantic Way. Make one last stop at the stunning Baby Cliffs in Ballyreen where you can walk atop the Burren, before returning to Galway.

Frequently asked questions about Galway

What top attractions are a must-see in Galway?

The must-see attractions in Galway are:

What are the best day trips and excursions from Galway?

The best day trips and excursions from Galway are:

Cliffs of Moher

What are the most popular museums and exhibitions in Galway?

Other Sightseeing Options in Galway

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What people are saying about Galway

Overall rating

4.7 / 5

based on 13,826 reviews

My visit to the Cliffs was UNIMAGINATIVE!! It's been over a week & I still can barely convey my thoughts/feelings into words. The ride there/back was informative, lengthy, yet very fun & the other stops were a perfect addition to the trip. The REAL MVP was the Cliffs! The weather was absolutely PERFECT & we could see for what seems like miles & miles! I took so many pics but they just don't do the actual place justice. The hike up & down the cliffs will give you a great workout, so be prepared! Also being able to listen to the people playing instruments in certain spots was quite nice. I briefly visited the museum after admiring the cliffs, then a quick stop in the café for a few beverages & crisps (chips) for the road. My guide was Gina & driver Liam (I think). Gina was extremely nice & knowledgeable about ALL-THINGS-Ireland!! I enjoyed her tidbits about the culture, her good-natured humor & overall enthusiasm for the tourists! I HIGHLY recommend this trip to all!!!

Had a great time on this excursion. The tour guide, Fergal, really made the trip. He was funny and entertaining and got everyone involved. Cliffs of Moher were beautiful and were able to stop off at other locations. Was a little disappointed with Galway as there wasn’t much to sightsee as we were in the central shopping area so after we wondered the shops we were ready to go but had time to wait but otherwise this was a great experience.

We read reviews that this tour was exceptional & it really EXCEEDED expectations! Stephen was so incredible & thank you JP for navigating with such ease. This was a once in a lifetime opportunity and definitely a bucket list item! Thank you both so so much! I can’t recommend this tour enough!

If you do this trip, find Micheal Flaherty's horse (Murphy) and trap on Inisheer. Born and raised on the island, he's a treasure and his tour and stories were easily the best and most authentic experience we had in Ireland.

the greatest tour guide he is awesome i recommend it so much