Before you leave Quay Street, have a look at the mural on the wall of Claddagh and Celtic Jewellery (1 Quay Lane), which depicts the Claddagh fishwives selling the catch at the Spanish Arch. The arch, which was completed in 1584, is the perfect starting point for exploring the West End, Claddagh and the waterways. When the tide is high and the weather fair, you can sit and admire the graceful Galway hookers under sail.
The cathedral stands on the site of the old gaol and deserves an hour with a full visual display to self-guide yourself around this majestic building. A five-minute walk from here is the university, one of three established under royal charter in the mid-19th century. Children especially will enjoy a look around the museum across the green.
Perfect for all ages, with interactive maps and exhibitions over three floors. Filling the atrium is a Galway hooker suspended from the ceiling and in full sail. Artefacts dating from the Neolithic age and found locally are on permanent display. (Spanish Parade, galwaycitymuseum.ie)
The original makers of the Claddagh Ring (since 1750), this quaint jeweller’s shop, which is the oldest in Ireland, has a small museum in the back that tells the story of one of the world’s most iconic items of jewellery. 1 Quay Street
Everyone who spends a weekend in Galway ends up strolling around the open-air market in Church Lane and grabbing a snack from one of the many food stalls. Top tip: the pea and potato curry from Bean Tree, which specialises in vegan and vegetarian dishes, is phenomenal.
If you would like to include a visit to Galway during your Perfect Irish Trip, get in touch with us at Perfect iIrish Trip and let us help you save time to planning your trip.
A ‘Gaeltacht’ region is an area where Irish only (or mostly) is spoken. Unfortunately, the national language of Ireland is not spoken commonly amongst the Irish people. Everyone learns it in school, but very few go to on speak it after or even remember how to speak it, bar cúpla focal (a few words). Certain areas in Ireland are known as Gaeltacht areas, where only Irish is spoken. It is spoken at home, at school, in shops and to family and friends. These areas are mostly quite rural and densely populated, with few people living in them. All the road signs will also be written in Irish, as well as posters and what not in shops and public places. If you can get to a Gaeltacht area, it is highly recommended to do so, where you can immerse yourself in the language.
Where are the Gaeltacht area’s?
As of 2016 there was an estimated 99,617 people living in Gaeltacht areas. Parts of counties Donegal, Mayo, Galway, Kerry, Cork, Meath and Waterford are all Gaeltacht regions.
In Galway the best Gaeltacht regions are An Spiddéal and An Cheathrú Rua, which are both west from Galway City Centre. In Kerry, the best Gaeltacht regions are Corca Dhuibhne (The Dingle Peninsula) and Uíbh Ráthach (Iveragh Peninsula). Dingle town is a pretty place to see and visit and is famous for being home to over 30 pubs and Fungie the friendly Dolphin.
Some Irish words and sayings to know.
Hello -Dhia Dhuit (Dee-a Gwitch)
Good Bye – Slan (Slaawn)
Thank You – Go raibh maith agat (Gu rev maw ag-at )
How are you? – Conas atá tú? (konis ah-taw to)
Good – Go Maith (Gu maw)
Where is – Cá bhfuil (Caw vu-wil)
Rain – Báistí (bawis-tee)
Wet – Fluich (fluck)
My name is ****** – ***** is anim dom (***** is an-im dum)
5 of The Best Eco-Friendly Eateries Across Ireland
Traveling across Ireland can be done in a very eco-friendly manor. We are very lucky here that many people and business owners are aiming to make the world a better place. Every day more and more companies are doing their part to make great changes, some companies however have set out with eco-friendly ethos in mind from the beginning. Here is a list of 5 of the most eco-friendly places for you to dine in while touring Ireland or even if you live in Ireland and you want some healthy sustainable food choices, we have made this list by covering somewhere in almost each of the four corners of Ireland.
Located in Rathfarnham, County Dublin, The Carrot’s Tail is not only a place to eat delicious food, but also acts as a ‘Zero Waste Shop’ too. Customers opting for some zero-waste shopping can bring their containers in and fill up on nuts, seeds, flours, grains, beans, herbs and spices as well as purchasing some zero waste essentials and reusable tools. Working from a full vegan menu, the Carrot’s Tail deliver filling, tasty and delightful food keeping all their customers happy.
In the heart of Dingle Town you will find The Fishbox, who serve the freshest of fish from their very own family trawler, very much a sustainable farm to table, or sea to plate method. All seafood, fruit and veg are locally sourced, even the desserts are handmade at home by the mother of the family, Deirdre, each morning, breads are sourced from local bakers and even the beer served is produced in a macro brewery 100m down the road. The Fishbox is not only delicious, but is sustainable and organic and puts huge pride in their ingredients.
Ard Bia at Nimmos is tucked away past the historic Spanish Arch and overlooking the waters of the River Corrib. Ard Bia offers a full days menu, consisting of: Breakfast, brunch, lunch and dinner. Serving seasonal and locally sourced food Ard Bia deliver high quality, sustainable and healthy meals to their customers. Taking menu inspiration locally, but also with Mediterranean and Middle East influence, the food leaves customers feeling satisfied and full.
The Gallery in Westport, County Mayo has been paving the way for a more eco-friendly and fairer trade within the food industry in Ireland (and worldwide) since 2014. Being Ireland’s first natural wine bar (each wine is at the very minimum, organically farmed and most are biodynamic), members of the world’s ‘Kiss The Ground Movement’ (a global movement of regenerative farming), was the first coffee shop to ban single use plastics and instead opted to use recycled jam jars for takeaway coffee, works from a ‘palm free menu’ and was the first to ban avocados from their menu (due to the negativities behind the scenes that many do not see involved in the farming process). They are only some of the reasons why The Gallery has made our list. All food and drink is organically and ethically sourced and is always local where possible. The Gallery should be on any eco-friendly food lovers list.
Drumanilra Farm Kitchen is located just outside of Boyle in County Roscommon and offers very much a ‘farm to table’ menu in every aspect of the word. All produce is organic and local (where possible). All fresh meats cooked in the Farm Kitchen are certified organic, Irish and fully traceable back to their organic farm of origin. Most are produced on Drumanilra Organic Farm. With a mission to ‘reconnect people with local, organic, wholesome, sustainable food, rooted in place and assured provenance, grown by Drumanilra Farm and other like-minded producers’ and two new premises being opened over the coming year Drumanilra Farm Kitchen is not be missed.
These are only a few examples of some lovely eco-friendly places to visit in Ireland. If you would like more examples or you would like help preparing a plan/ itinerary of where you would like to stay and dine in Ireland you can look at ourEco-Friendly Tour of Ireland or have a look at our Perfect Irish Trip Packages. Happy Traveling.