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Things to do in
Galway Bay

Galway Bay: Our most recommended tours and activities

Dublin: Cliffs of Moher, Atlantic Edge & Galway City

1. Dublin: Cliffs of Moher, Atlantic Edge & Galway City

Escape the hustle and bustle of Dublin for a scenic full-day drive through the counties of Kildare, Limerick and Clare, passing the 15th-century Bunratty Castle and world-class golf and surf resort of Lahinch. Your ultimate destination is the dramatic Cliffs of Moher, where you will get 2 hours of free time to explore and premium entrance to the new Atlantic Edge, an interpretive visitor experience that gives you a virtual reality birds’ eye view of cliff edge life above and below sea level. Then, you can choose to walk along the cliff face and experience the power of nature at work. Feel the fresh air blowing off the ocean, and the sheer height of the cliffs overlooking the Atlantic. Visit O'Brien's Tower, standing proudly on the headland, with panoramic views of the Aran Islands and Galway Bay. Next, drive deep into the Burren, traveling along Europe’s edge! See native flora, ancient monuments, and megalithic tombs in Burren National Park, and look out for the unique Fairy Forts and Celtic Crosses. Continue around Galway Bay to medieval Galway City, passing the Blackhead Lighthouse and fishing village of Kinvara, famed for its Galway Hookers (boats). Upon arrival in Galway, described by W.B. Yeats as “The Venice of the West”. Enjoy a 30-minute guided walk, and learn about the city’s trade connections with Spain. You will have some free time to explore the narrow streets on your own, or relax in boutique stores and quaint cafés. 2 hour stop. Then, sit back on the return drive to Dublin, enjoying the on board entertainment, including extracts from the show “Riverdance” and other examples of Irish culture.

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

2. From Galway: Full-Day Cliffs of Moher & Burren Guided 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 Galway: Aran Islands Day Trip & Cliffs of Moher Cruise

3. 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 we depart the Cliffs we travel alongside the edge of Galway Bay which is perhaps the most beautiful coastline in Ireland and is part of the larger, world-renowned Wild Atlantic Way.

Cliffs of Moher Full-Day Tour from Dublin

4. 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 Liscannor or Doolin to experience Ireland's traditional village life. 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.

From Galway: Aran Islands & Cliffs of Moher Day Cruise

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

Take a day trip to the Aran Islands and see the Cliffs of Moher by cruise on this tour awarded the "Best Irish Experience" award by travel2ireland and the ITTN and 'Boat Tour of the Year in Ireland 2024'. Enjoy exploring Inis Mór with an audio guide. Sail through the sea and take in incredible views of the Cliffs of Moher on your return to Galway. Depart from the Galway city docks and admire the stunning views of the Connemara and Clare Coast before arriving on Inis Mór, the largest of the Aran Islands. Learn about the history, heritage, and culture of the Aran Islands via an audio guide. Spend 4.5 hours on the island to enjoy sandy beaches, stone forts, and the serenity of island life. Your return journey takes you along the Cliffs of Moher. Formed 300 million years ago, the cliffs rise to a magnificent height of over 200 meters which you can only truly appreciate from the water. Listen to your audio guide while onboard to learn why the Cliffs of Moher are so iconic. See Ireland’s largest sea bird colony, 'An Branán Mór Sea Stack,' and a sea cave used during a Harry Potter film. Watch out for puffins, dolphins, and seals that call these waters home.

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

6. 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.

Cliffs of Moher and Galway Tour in Italian or Spanish

7. 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 Limerick: Full-Day Guided Tour of Cliffs of Moher

8. From Limerick: Full-Day Guided Tour of Cliffs of Moher

Experience the highest cliffs in Europe on this full-day tour from Limerick. Embark on a journey to the historic city for the Burren and the Cliffs of Moher. Admire the stunning natural biodiversity of Galway Bay and stop at Bunratty Castle. Hop aboard the spacious and climate-controlled bus at Arthurs Quay in Limerick. Lean back and take in the views on the comfortable drive. Stop along the way to view King John’s Castle and the River Shannon. Continue to County Clare to explore the Cliffs of Moher. Spend 1.5 hours to enjoy the geological beauty of the cliffs. Receive a complimentary ticket to the award-winning Atlantic Edge exhibition which examines all aspects of the mighty cliffs. Depart the Cliffs of Moher for Doolin village, where a pint and lunch in a traditional Irish pub can be purchased. Along the way, enjoy superb views of the Atlantic Coast and Aran Islands. Visit one of the unusual limestone landscapes of the lunar-like Burren where the Arctic, Alpine, and Mediterranean flowers flourish side-by-side. If it's the right season, see one of 26 different types of orchids that grow on Galway Bay. Drive along Galway Bay and take a rest stop at Bunratty Castle. Imagine the days when Norman knights, Gaelic warriors, and jousting chieftains hung out at the hallowed spot. Depart from Bunratty Castle and drive back to your meeting point in Limerick. 

Rossaveel, Galway: Ferry Transfer to Inis Mór (Aran Islands)

9. Rossaveel, Galway: Ferry Transfer to Inis Mór (Aran Islands)

Prepare for a warm Irish welcome as you board the luxury vessel, which includes a full bar and refreshment service. The ferry departs daily at 10:30 AM from the sheltered fishing harbor of Rossaveel in Connemara, Galway. Sail for about 40 minutes to Inis Mór (Inishmore), located just off the coast of County Galway in the heart of Galway Bay. The largest of the Aran Islands, Inis Mór offers visitors a glimpse into a way of life that has long since disappeared from most of the world. Upon arrival at the island choose from a variety of activities. Rent a bike or hop on a bus tour with a local guide. Explore ecclesiastical ruins and prehistoric stone forts such as the world-renowned Dún Aonghasa. Enjoy live music, taste seasonal local foods, or visit the Aran Island Sweater Market. Hop back on the ferry at 5:00 PM at Kilronan Pier on Inis Mór for your journey back to Rossaveel Harbor in Connemara.

From Galway: Connemara and Connemara National Park Day Trip

10. From Galway: Connemara and Connemara National Park Day Trip

Explore Connemara National Park on a day trip from Galway. Pass through charming villages along the Wild Atlantic Way and enjoy 3 hours to explore the beautiful rural areas of Connemara. Meet your guide in the heart of Galway early in the morning and hop on the comfortable tour vehicle which will first take you through the Claddagh and Salthill and along the coastal road of Connemara which forms part of the Wild Atlantic Way. Learn about the unique culture and history of the area from your professional local guide. Travel along the Sky Road and enjoy panoramic views of the Atlantic Ocean as you pass local villages like Barna and Spiddal. Stop for 3 hours at the Connemara National Park. Take your time to explore trails that meander through 3,000 hectares of bog, mountains, grasslands, and woodlands. Afterward, board the bus for the return journey to Galway, with photo stops at Kylemore Abbey and the Quiet Man Bridge featured in the 1952 John Ford film.

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What people are saying about Galway Bay

Overall rating

4.6 / 5

based on 6,017 reviews

Alan was our driver/tour guide for the day trip, and he was SUPERB! He shared such amazing, knoledgable information throughout the trip, we took multiple stops at some amazing places including a chocolate factory in Burren which makes all their chocolate in house, as well as an old castle, lunch, and then of course the cliffs. He played great music along the way, was super interactive, and gave us all great pub recommendations to try out in Galway such as Taaffes! Amazing place for live Irish music, and great environment! So many of us from the day tour saw each other there that evening, and got to know one another! This trip is worth every penny and I would say its a must do, during a trip to Ireland!

Overall very good, the time at the Cliffs could be a little longer. A small drawback for us as Germans, our guide spoke very quickly and with an accent, so we had a bit of trouble understanding him.

We were incredibly lucky with our guide Susanne. She was very friendly, helpful, funny and made the trip even more perfect with her warm personality.

the guide Cristian was simply wonderful, he told us a lot of interesting things. very caring attitude towards passengers. 10 of 10

Excellent service from the driver and guide Alan, it could be improved that cell phones can be charged on the bus.