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  • Address: Spanish Parade House, Merchants Road Lower
  • Hours: Tues-Sat, 10am-5pm. Closed Sun, Mon.

Galway ATTRACTIONS See all

Galway City Museum

Overlooking the famous Spanish Arch, the Galway City Museum has been devoted to preserving the history and heritage of Galway since it opened its doors in 1976. The award-winning building is worth a visit for the views from the roof deck alone – spanning the Claddagh, the River Corrib and Galway Bay, as well as the iconic Arch – but those looking to understand the city’s unique cultural roots will find plenty of intrigue inside.

Three floors of exhibitions focus on contemporary Galway and the importance of the Arts, medieval Galway, and the Claddagh village, featuring among them a collection of local artworks, historic photographs (including one of President John F Kennedy's 1963 visit), artifacts dating from Prehistoric and Medieval times and personal items chronicling the history of the people of Galway.

Highlights include the Galway Civic Sword dating back to the Charter of King James I; the Great Mace, an impressive silver ornament presented to the town in 1712 by Edward Eyre, then Mayor of Galway; a statue of the famous Irish writer Padraic Ó Conaire, who was born in the city in 1881, and the specially designed ‘Máirtín Oliver’, a ‘Galway Hooker’, or traditional sailing boat.

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