Close to the midpoint of the spectacular Wild Atlantic Way driving route, and with an international reputation for its vibrant culture, Galway is one of the top destinations in Ireland. Accommodation options are plentiful in this compact city, whether you’re searching for outright opulence or cheap and cheerful properties. Here are the top hotels and bed and breakfasts in Galway.
The Twelve Hotel is in the idyllic seaside village of Barna, a short distance outside Galway city. Named after the twelve rolling peaks nearby, this hotel offers relaxation, luxury and escapism. After a day admiring the Atlantic Ocean, indulge in the unique charms of the hotel. Book a body massage at Le Petit Spa, sip an Irish stout in Pins Gastro Bar or ease your pains with an in-room seaweed bath, prepared by the bath butler.
The Galmont has a perfect location overlooking Galway Bay and is just a three-minute walk from Eyre Square. The spacious rooms vary from deluxe sea views to those with a private balcony to family rooms. There are two dining options – the Marinas Restaurant menu includes Galway Bay smoked haddock and pan-seared rump of Irish lamb, while Coopers Bar & Lounge has a signature Knickerbocker glory. There is a large heated outdoor terrace, a spa and an 18m (60ft) swimming pool.
Just outside the city, on the shores of Lough Corrib, Glenlo Abbey is a 56ha (138-acre) private estate, with a five-bay 18th-century manor house, walled gardens and a nine-hole golf course. The former seat of an Anglo-Norman family, this is definitely the place to come if you’re looking for old-world ambience and almost regal levels of comfort – even the smallest rooms are spacious, with eye-catching views, some looking towards the lake and others towards the attached abbey.
In the East Village neighbourhood of Galway, the Forster Court Hotel has 50 bright, stylish, colourful, homely rooms to ensure a comfortable stay. The ground-floor Hyde Bar & Gin Parlour leads you through an ivy-decorated entrance into a social hangout serving a whopping 623 gins from all over the world. Locally sourced Irish food graces the menu, as do craft beers and carefully curated wines.
The lavish five-star g Hotel was designed by superstar milliner – and Galway native – Philip Treacy. His concept was based around the sea, and unique maritime touches abound throughout, such as a tank of Connemara seahorses in the lobby and shell-shaped handles on each bedroom door. The two-floor destination spa here comes highly recommended, as does the hotel restaurant gigi’s, which holds two AA rosettes.
Directly on Eyre Square, the Skeffington Arms Hotel is a relaxing option for young couples and those on city breaks. Resembling a pub from the outside, it’s a great place to delve into Irish culture and hospitality, particularly at one of the six bars. One has live entertainment nightly, plus there’s a gin and whiskey bar, and a nightclub. Chefs also dish up hearty Irish stews and steaks. All rooms are of similar, minimalistic design.
Galway Bay Hotel is right on Salthill Promenade, looking across the bay to Flaggy Shore, County Clare. It’s a great place to stay with kids; there are family rooms, a kids’ club and babysitting services. Book a table at the Harvest Café and your little one can order from the kids’ menu, while you tuck into soups, sandwiches or salads or one of the homemade sweet treats.
This is an updated version of an article originally written by Kate Phelan.
Discover a place to stay for you and a furry friend with our pick of the best pet-friendly places to stay in Ireland, bookable on Culture Trip.
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1. GuatemalaAn express adventure for those with limited time off. Prepare yourself incredible experiences. You will hike a volcano, visit mayan temples and witness a ceremony and take in beautiful colonial Antigua.
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