Galway is one of Ireland’s most beautiful and cultural counties. Galway City is the third largest city in the Republic of Ireland (a population of 75,414 according t the 2011 census) and the only city in the province of Connacht. Galway city may not be the biggest city in Ireland, but it definitely has the biggest heart. From narrow streets alive with activity and Irish culture to amazing landscapes and seascapes – Galway has it all.
Galway is home to the longest place name in Ireland, Muckanaghederdauhaulia (a townland in the civil parish of Kilcummin). In Irish, its name is Muiceanach idir Dhá Sháile which means “piggery between two briny places”. Galway City is nicknamed “The City of Tribes” („Cathair na dTreabh“) after the fourteen merchant families who led the city during the Hiberno-Norman period.
The most famous person born in Galway is Hollywood actor Peter O’Toole. Peter Seamus Lorcan O’Toole was born in Connemara in 1932. Most famous for his role in the 1962 film “Lawrence of Arabia,” poor O’Toole holds the world record for Oscar nominations without actually winning. He was nominated an incredible eight times without bringing home a golden statue.
The Claddagh Ring is Galway’s own symbol of love and friendship, worn the world over. Among other symbols of Galway there are the Aran Sweater, an amblem, not only of the Aran Islands, but of Ireland itself, and the Galway Hookers, ships that distinguish themselves as Galway’s signature upon the water. In 2007, Galway was named one of the top eight “sexiest cities” in the world and 14th in Europe in 2008.There are 7,000 Irish speakers in Galway city, which is nearly ten percent of the population.
Galway is often referred to as the “Cultural Heart of Ireland” as it is most associated with the Irish language, music, song and dance traditions.The city is known for its vibrant lifestyle and numerous festivals, celebrations and events including the summer’s Galway Arts Festival which is known for its famous Macnas (the arts group) parade.Galway City is on the doorstep of Galway’s Gaeltacht (an area where Irish is spoken).The park at the centre of Galway City is officially called John F. Kennedy Park after the presidential visit of 1970. But, the park is still known by most Irish people as Eyre Square. The square is home to the old city gates and its defending cannon.
The Aran Islands, probably Ireland’s most famous islands, are located just off the coast of Galway. The three islands – Inishmore, Inishmaan and Inisheer – are the perfect place to visit to see Ireland at its best. They are also Gaeltacht areas.
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In an effort to create a haven that will reflect the beauty of Galway County, hotel owners have left no details to the case. From picturesque gardens and manicured lawns to elegant entrances, cozy reception areas and friendly staff, your senses will enjoy every moment spent at one of the Galway hotels.