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Wednesday 29 November 2023 Dublin: 2°C
Shutterstock/STLJB Galway city
heritage hotspots

Your summer in Ireland: 5 must-see sites in Galway city

Take our challenge and tick off as many glorious sites this summer as recommended by heritage officers around Ireland.

EVERY CORNER OF Ireland has something unique to showcase – but how much of it have you seen? has been chatting to heritage officers in every part of the country to compile their top five picks that they think you might enjoy visiting this summer.

Heritage includes monuments, archaeological or architectural objects, seascapes, wrecks, geology, inland waterways, gardens and parks.

We are publishing recommendations for every local authority area over the course of a fortnight, along with the details you need to know to plan your visit.

Get motoring!

Galway City

1. Geology Museum, The Quadrangle NUI Galway 

Located within the 19th century quadrangle, the museum holds a collection of rare rocks, ancient fossils and precious gems.

Visitors have the opportunity to view displays of these samples from the field of earth and ocean science.

Amenities: There are nearby toilets and cafés on the campus, the museum has no wheelchair access.

Opening hours and costs: The museum is open on weekdays from 10am-4pm and is FREE to access.

shutterstock_656713279 Shutterstock / STLJB Quadrangle NUI Galway Shutterstock / STLJB / STLJB

2. Zoology and marine biology museum, NUI Galway

Known as Galway’s dead zoo, here visitors can see a collection of over 500 specimens of mammal, bird, fish and other creatures.

This zoology and marine biology museum contains four specimens once owned by the famous naturalist Charles Darwin.

Amenities: There are nearby toilets and cafés on the campus, the museum has full wheelchair access.

Opening hours and costs: The museum is FREE to access and is open Monday-Friday from 10am-4pm.


3. St Nicholas’ Collegiate church

Founded in 1320, this medieval church is the largest of its kind in Ireland.

Visitors can enjoy a tour of the church and see medieval tombs as well as World War I memorials.

Amenities: Access is available to wheelchair users with refreshments available on request.

Opening hours and costs: The church is open daily from 9am-7pm FREE of charge but small donations are welcome.

shutterstock_1088492555 Shutterstock / Michael_Kentucky St Nicholas' Collegiate church Shutterstock / Michael_Kentucky / Michael_Kentucky

4. The Red Earl’s Hall, Druid Lane

This medieval hall is part of the Castle of Galway and dates back to the 13th century.

There is an exhibition of items and replicas found during archaeological excavation, during which over 11,000 artefacts were uncovered.

Amenities: The hall is wheelchair accessible and guided tours are available on request.

Opening hours and costs: The hall is FREE to visit and open Monday-Friday from 9.30am-4.45pm as well as Saturdays 10am-1pm. 

shutterstock_580783813 Shutterstock / futuristman Druid Lane Shutterstock / futuristman / futuristman

5. Galway city museum

With three floors of exhibitions, the museum focuses on medieval and prehistoric Galway as well as more modern history such as World War I and revolution in Galway 1913-1923.

The museum also includes exhibitions on the Galway Hooker, GAA and sea science.

Amenities: The museum has wheelchair access, a restaurant and toilet facilities.

Opening hours and costs: The museum is FREE to visit and open from Tuesday-Saturday from 10am-5pm and Sundays 12-5pm. Donations are welcome.

shutterstock_642020551 Shutterstock / Kit Leong Inside the Galway city museum Shutterstock / Kit Leong / Kit Leong

Thanks to Galway City Council heritage officer Dr Jim Higgins for his recommendations.

TOMORROW: Top 5 must-sees in Kilkenny and Dublin city.

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