48 hours in Galway

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Galway is filled with traditional pubs, unique shops, friendly locals, and an endless list of things to do. Everyone has a different idea of the best way to spend 48 hours in Galway, and no one is wrong. We have highlighted some of the best things to do in Galway, sights to see, and places to eat so you don’t miss any of the highlights. If you can’t fit it all in, you’ll have to come back! Imperial Hotel Galway is a conveniently located, welcoming Galway City hotel that is ideal for exploring the city, soaking up the culture & history, or sleeping off a few too many in the Roisin Dubh! Book on our website where you’ll always save €15 per night, guaranteed.

Day 1

2 pm

Hop off the train and walk a short way across Eyre Square to Imperial Hotel Galway where a warm welcome always awaits. Guests can check in from 3 pm but we will assign a room early if we have one available. If not, you can drop your bags and head straight to 810 Restaurant and Bar and grab a late lunch before you head off to explore. We have a varied menu with something for everyone with plenty of traditional Irish favourites. Start as you mean to go on by sampling a delicious local beer.


Before shops close, take the opportunity to enjoy a walk down Shop Street. If you’re looking for local and independent shops, Galway is the ideal place to find it. As well as high street shops, Galway City has a variety of specialist stores, many of which have interesting gifts. Galway has amazing vintage and second-hand shops, like The Flea Style Market, Public Romance, and Charlie Byrne’s Bookshop. Many of the most interesting shops are located in small districts within the city centre including The Latin Quarter, The Westend, and Galway’s famous bustling outdoor market, which only opens on weekends.


Head back to your central Galway Hotel and freshen up before heading out for dinner and drinks. We recommend a stroll down The Westend, which is home to some of the best restaurants, bars, and venues in Galway. Try Daróg Wine Bar for some top-tier tapas and small plates and vegans will love the delicious Greens & Co. Martine’s Restaurant and Wine Bar on Quay Street is a crowd-pleaser and has something for everyone. After dinner, walk around the city following the sound of music. Traditional music is at the heart of Galway and you won’t have to walk far to find fun. Tig Choili and Taaffes Bar are the perfect places to drink, listen to music, and soak up the culture.



Start early with a walk to Salthill, a 30-minute stroll through town toward the sea. Clear your head of all of last night’s cobwebs with a walk on the beach or if you’re really brave, a dip in the Atlantic Ocean. You’ll never regret a cold swim to wake you up. Afterwards, visit a local bakery or coffee shop in Salthill and grab a warm coffee and a delicious homemade bun.


One of the most notable events happening every Galway weekend is the St. Nicholas Street Market. Filled with local vendors selling everything from fresh produce to artisan crafts. This is the perfect place to spend your Saturday morning. If you don’t see the market, you’ll smell the delicious food drawing you closer. It’s the ideal place to grab a bit of lunch or gift for a loved one at home.


Galway is not all shopping and drinking. The city is a cultural hub for lovers of heritage and history. Enjoy the unique and traditional architecture when you walk around the city and visit the Galway City Museum for a true step back in time. The Spanish Arch is located right by the museum and is a significant historical landmark. You also find the perfectly preserved 16th-century Lynch’s Castle on Shop Street.


After a day of exploring, head back to the Imperial Hotel Galway to freshen up and for an early dinner. Our nearby restaurant, Zappi’s is an authentic Italian-style restaurant serving the most delicious Italian dishes along with an extensive wine list. After a great feed and a debrief with your group, head back to town to enjoy some famous Galway pints and hospitality. We recommend visiting the nearby O’Connell’s which has won awards for its fantastic outdoor space. After you’ve seen enough and drank enough, pop into Prátaí for some delicious Irish chips or Dough Bros for an award-winning slice of pizza.

Day 3

Enjoy a lie-in on your last morning in Galway before joining us for breakfast in Imperial Hotel Galway. Enjoy a selection of homemade bread, muffins and pastries, Irish cheese, and cold meats, or a full Irish breakfast if you fancy it. Before you head for your train. Enjoy a stroll on The Long Walk, a deceptively named short stroll along Lough Corrib to enjoy the last sights and sounds of Galway. Take a last stroll down shop street grabbing a bite to eat in one of the cafes, bars, and restaurants along the way. Grab your bags from our Galway City hotel and head off to the train station for a relaxing ride home.


Book a two-night stay in Imperial Hotel Galway and enjoy 48 hours in our beautiful city for yourself. We look forward to welcoming you, your family and friends to Galway for a short break you’ll remember forever.

Robyn Hurley

Robyn Hurley

Robyn Hurley is a keen traveller with a big heart for animals. She writes about her journeys and loves sharing tips on where to go. Galway is one of her favorite spots to visit and write about. She also loves meeting new animal friends on her trips. Her stories will help you plan an unforgettable trip.

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