TOP 5 Best Outdoor Activities in County Galway, RANKED

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Whether you’re looking for some fresh air or a big adventure, here are County Galway’s five best outdoor activities.

Galway is a coastal county with some of Ireland’s most beautiful natural scenery.

From rugged islands and freshwater lakes to the sprawling expanse of Connemara, Galway has something for everyone. If you want to relax and soak up it all or get your hiking boots dirty, County Galway is the place to be.

With warm weather gracing the Irish coasts as summer hits the road, now is the perfect time to put on your walking shoes and enjoy the incredible scenery of Ireland’s west coast.

5. Take a walk on the Salthill promenade enjoy nature near the city

Walking the Salthill Promenade is one of County Galway's best outdoor activities.
Credit: Fáilte Ireland

Located along Galway Bay, the Salthill Promenade is ideal for walking, biking, rollerblading or simply taking in the views of the water and the Aran Islands beyond.

It is a 1.2 mile (2 km) walk just beyond Galway City and borders stunning beaches perfect for a dip in the ocean. There is also a diving board for the more adventurous swimmers.

Taking a stroll along the Salthill promenade is an ideal activity for city dwellers who want to enjoy the fresh air and scenery while still being close to the beautiful and vibrant city of Galway.

Our recommendation is to whet your appetite along the coast before heading back to town for a pint and fresh locally caught fish, served in one of Galway’s many pubs.

4. Cycling around the Aran Islands Go off the beaten track

Take a bike ride around the Aran Islands.
Credit: Fáilte Ireland

Ireland is home to many islands. Some of the most famous are the Aran Islands off Galway.

If you have little time, we suggest heading straight to Inis Mór, the largest of the three islands. With various Christian and Celtic historical sites to visit, the best way to get around the island is by bicycle.

For around € 15 a day you can hire a bicycle and explore ancient pagan standing stones, old churches, beaches with seal colonies and, of course, the famous Dun Aengus Fort.

The variety offered by the Aran Islands makes it one of County Galway’s top five outdoor activities. Just be sure to check the weather forecast before planning your trip!

3. Horseback riding on the beach – an adventure for experienced and novice riders

Horseback riding on the beach is one of the best outdoor activities in County Galway.
Credit: Facebook / @MoycullenRidingCentre

Galway is home to one of Ireland’s biggest horse races. It is no wonder then that there are many places all over the county for visitors to experience the joys of horseback riding.

Whether you are looking for a trekking vacation or a few hours in the saddle, Galway is the best place for equestrian adventures. While you’re at it, why not combine your horseback riding excursion with the incredibly picturesque beaches of Galway?

With professionals guiding you every step of the way, horseback riding along the beach is a must for anyone looking for an adventure in Galway.

2. Take a boat trip on Lough Corrib – soak up the scenery in style

A boat trip on Lough Corrib is a relaxing experience.
Credit: Facebook / @corribtours

Lough Corrib is the largest lake in the Republic of Ireland (the second largest on the island of Ireland) and is said to have 365 islands.

Taking a boat trip on Lough Corrib will allow you to sit back and relax while absorbing the natural beauty of the lough and learning about the history of the area.

You can even tour the islands of Lough Corrib, the most famous of which is Inchagoill Island.

If you are looking for a more adventurous way to explore Lough Corrib, you can always book a kayak tour. This allows you to explore the islands, coves and beautiful nature up close and in a personal way.

1. Explore Connemara National Park – a must for anyone visiting Galway

Connemara National Park tops our list of the best outdoor activities in County Galway.
Credit: Tourism Ireland

Connemara National Park is one of Ireland’s greatest treasures. That’s why we picked it as one of County Galway’s Top Five Outdoor Activities.

From breathtaking mountains to ancient bogs, the national park offers scenery for everyone. Connemara National Park offers hiking trails for all skill levels, whether you are a seasoned hiker or exploring the countryside with the kids.

If you are looking for a real adventure, the park allows wild camping. However, be sure to check any restrictions in place before visiting.

There are also picnic facilities and walking tours for families on a day trip. A popular hiking route is Diamond Hill, which has four different routes ranging from easy to difficult.

The national park offers some of the most breathtaking views on the island of Ireland. Whether you climb one of the Twelve Bens or walk through a bog, natural beauty abounds. Make sure you dress for the weather and wear appropriate walking shoes.

By Audrey Martin


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