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Galway City on Foot with Seán: Stories, History, Local Tips, Chat and More..

5 (60)
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Galway City on Foot with Seán: Stories, History, Local Tips, Chat and More..

5 (60)
Share
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Discover the vibrant city of Galway like never before with Seán, the exceptional tour guide, teacher, and storyteller who will take you on an unforgettable journey through history, local insights, and captivating tales. Seán's mastery of storytelling and his infectious sense of humor will make this walking tour a truly enjoyable experience. Explore the medieval archways of the Spanish Arch and dive into the rich history of Galway as Seán shares the city's rise from a Gaelic settlement to a prosperous trading port. Learn about the Claddagh Ring and its fascinating tale of love, loyalty, and adventure. Quay Street, Kirwan's Lane, and St. Nicholas' Collegiate Church are just a few of the enchanting stops on this tour. And don't forget to hear the thrilling story of Mayor James Lynch Fitzstephen and his unruly son, Walter. End your journey at Tigh Neachtáin, one of Galway's finest pubs, and raise a glass to the extraordinary life of Humanity Dick. With Seán as your guide, this experience will be more than just a tour. It will be an immersive and memorable adventure through the heart of Galway.

About this experience

  • Free Cancellation For a full refund cancel at least before the start of your booking
  • 1 hours 30 minutes
  • Suitable for 1-15 Participants
  • Small Group Tour
  • Guided Experience
  • Discover the fascinating history of Galway
  • Immerse yourself in captivating storytelling
  • Explore the medieval city streets and laneways
  • Learn insider tips on where to eat and drink
  • Uncover the extraordinary life of Humanity Dick
  • A comprehensive and entertaining introduction to the story and stories of Galway.

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More about this experience

Introduction

Explore the enchanting city of Galway like never before with Seán as your guide and storyteller. Seán is not your average tour guide; he is a master storyteller, a teacher, and a true local who knows every nook and cranny of Galway. Get ready for an extraordinary experience filled with stories, history, local tips, and captivating chat.

What to expect?

Prepare to immerse yourself in Galway's rich past and vibrant present. During this 90-minute tour, Seán will take you on a journey through time as he unveils the hidden stories and ancient secrets of this remarkable city. Get ready to be mesmerized by tales of Gaelic settlements, astonishing rise to wealth, and the 14 influential families known as the "Tribes" who ruled Galway. Discover the origins of the world-famous Claddagh Ring, encounter pirates and galleons, and witness true love that never wavered.

Who is this for?

This tour is for anyone with a curious mind and a love for history, storytelling, and adventure. Whether you're a solo traveler, a couple, or part of a small group, Seán's tour is the perfect way to experience Galway. Guests of all ages and backgrounds will find themselves captivated by his infectious enthusiasm, humor, and warm personality. Don't miss the chance to embark on this delightful journey that will leave you with a deeper understanding and appreciation of Galway's rich heritage and cultural significance.

Why book this?

Seán's tour is not your ordinary sightseeing experience. It is an immersive and unforgettable journey that brings Galway's history and legends to life. With his magnetic personality and poetic storytelling, Seán will transport you back in time, painting vivid pictures with his words. His in-depth knowledge, combined with a genuine love for Galway, shines through every anecdote and tale he shares. This is your chance to discover the real Galway, beyond the guidebooks, and connect with the city on a deeper level. Prepare to be entertained, educated, and inspired by Seán's exceptional storytelling skills.

Good to know

Please note that this tour has a duration of 90 minutes and operates with small groups of fewer than 15 people to ensure a personal and intimate experience. The meeting point is at the Spanish Arch, one of the last remnants of Galway's medieval city walls. From there, Seán will guide you through significant landmarks such as Claddagh, Quay Street, Kirwan's Lane, Saint Nicholas' Collegiate Church, Lynch's Castle, and Tigh Neachtáin, one of Galway's finest pubs. Be prepared to receive frank advice on the best places to eat and drink, as Seán knows all the hidden gems in town.

Reviews

Past guests rave about their experiences with Seán, describing his tour as the best walking tour they have ever taken. They praise his knowledge, wit, and ability to make history come alive. According to one guest, "His storytelling was compelling and his sense of humor made it one of the most enjoyable tours we have ever taken." Another guest expressed, "This man is the real deal for a first-hand guide to Galway." Join Seán and discover why visitors are raving about his informative, funny, and passionate walking tour.

How long before the event do I need to book?

  • You can book at any time before the event

Vouchers accepted in the following formats

  • Mobile

Your Itinerary

The Spanish Arch

We start the tour at the Spanish Arch on the banks of the River Corrib, part of the only remaining fully-intact section of the medieval city walls. Here, we begin the story of Galway, charting its unlikely rise from a Gaelic settlement to a fabulously-wealthy Anglo-Norman walled city state, ruled over by 14 families (the "Tribes"), an international trading port characterised by its loyalty to the Crown and deep suspicion of the Gaels who still surrounded its walls.

The Claddagh

(Pass by)

Across the river from the Spanish Arch lies the ancient fishing village of Claddagh, the place that gave its name to the rollicking 17th century tale of how the world-famous Claddagh Ring came to be. Be ready for galleons, pirates, slave markets, a test of loyalty... and a tale of true love that refused to quit.

Quay Street

Entering the medieval city proper, we make our way onto Quay Street, the centre of Galway's life since before the city was founded almost 800 years ago. Today, it is a bustling hub of several pubs, a variety of restaurants, a good few cafés, a few good cafés, lots of music, one very good toy shop, one Claddagh Ring museum.... and one medieval castle. Frank advice on where to eat and drink (and possibly where not to eat and drink) are freely available at no extra cost.

Kirwan's Lane

We duck off Quay Street to savour this secluded medieval laneway (and, occasionally, to avoid the crowds!). Named after one of Galway City's famous 14 merchant tribes, Kirwan's Lane's beautiful streetscape gives a glimpse into a time when Galway was one of the finest (and wealthiest) cities in Britain or Ireland.

Saint Nicholas' Collegiate Church

The story of Galway's glorious rise and tragic fall comes together at the 700 year-old Church of St. Nicholas (patron saint of sailors and... well, some other professionals). Hear tales of merchants with too much money and too few morals, English soldiers with a serious grudge against art, slow sieges, fast plagues and, ultimately, a 300 year-long decline that left Galway ready to rise again to become the city it is today. If you ask nicely, you might also get a nod in the direction of Galway's finest cheese and wine bar. And if you're very lucky, you're visiting on a Saturday, and all the wonders of Galway's Saturday Market are on offer here, too (do not miss out on the doughnuts, the fresh oysters or the otherworldly air plants).

The Lynch Memorial

With most of the history out of the way, it's time for one of Galway's oldest, darkest and most entertaining tales: the 15th-century story of Mayor James Lynch Fitzstephen and his entitled, naughty son, Walter. The story of two hot-blooded young men, rivalry for the affections of a young woman, a violent encounter on the streets of Galway, and one very stern and unbending father. Oh, and Ireland's oldest tourist trap.

Lynch's Castle

Standing on Shop St., the city's central thoroughfare, Galway's finest medieval building was home to the most powerful of the city's oligarchs, the Lynch family, for centuries. Today one of Ireland's most splendid banks, the building features many beautiful crests and carvings, one of which leads to the story of a terrible fire in the castle, and a most unlikely rescue. You'll get a recommendation for one of Galway's finest whiskey pubs, also the setting for the story of an unlikely lavatorial encounter between a well-meaning tourist and a smart alec barman in the 1980s. (And, if you don't object, the only mild swear word on the tour!)

Naughton's Pub (Tigh Neachtain)

No better way to finish our tour than with the story of Galway's most remarkable son: Humanity Dick! Back on Quay St., we stop outside one of Galway's finest pubs, Tigh Neachtáin. This pretty building wasn't always a pub, though: in the 18th century, it served as the townhouse of Galway's most underappreciated celebrity, Humanity Dick himself. Martin's life quite literally defies belief: Blazing a trail of triumph and tragedy through the public life of Ireland and Britain, he was, by turns, the most famous duellist in the land (earning him the moniker "Hairtrigger Dick" in his youth), the singular pioneer of legislating for animal rights in the London Parliament, a founding member of the Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (hence "Humanity Dick"), and landlord of almost all of Connemara. Between times, he was also a regular bankrupt, an exiled fugitive from the law... and one of the late 18th century's most infamous cuckolds.

Reviews

(60)

5 (60)

H3073OGjamiew

My family of four took a tour of Galway with Sean. He was knowledgeable and entertaining. My daughters, 12 and 9, were captivated with Sean’s storytelling. I’d definitely recommend this tour. It was fun and educational. Thank you, Sean!!

BrianL406

After combing through dozens of reviews for walking tours of Galway City, Seán was a shoe-in for our group of eight unruly seventy year olds. Humourous and knowlegable, he recounts the Galway of the past and present in an exhuberant and compelling way that makes you wish that he had been your history teacher back in the day. Despite the rain and the cold wind, the 90 minute tour was over in what seemed like a half hour, and we came away enchanted - and better informed! Seán really engaged with every member of the group. All the different nationalies and different backgrounds in our party felt the magic of what is clearly a passion mixed with the gift of telling a great story. Don't miss this!

Dustin_R

Seán was a great story teller and we really enjoyed his tour on foot around Galway. He told about the city's history and folklore stories as well. We all really enjoyed the time spent with him.

StephenInWSeattle

Sean met us at the Spanish Arch and our history lesson soon began. He shared so much information about the importance of Galway in trading and militarily to the region. Interesting stories about how Galway was settled and grew along with tales of the people who lived and died in Galway. Sean has a quick wit and keeps the tour moving and he does a great job of getting to know his group and it seems like your walking around with a Galway historian friend. The walk is pretty much level and easy to navigate and Sean’s personality and stories make the tour go by so fast. We were all sad that it had to end. Thank you Sean for a fantastic walking tour of Galway.

samfC3624NV

Entertaining, funny and informative - Seán’s walking tour has it all. It gave us a great overview of the city’s past as well as delving into some of Gallway’s lesser-known historical curiosities. Seán even stopped off by the street market to get us all muffins! Couldn’t recommend highly enough.

Culture65109095546

My partner and I really enjoyed Seán’s walking tour of Galway, which was in equal parts educational and entertaining. We had spent a few days in Galway by the time we did the tour, but Seán’s engaging storytelling brought the city for life for us. I’ll remember his comedic telling of the legend of the Claddagh ring for years to come. I’d highly recommend visitors to Galway to book onto the tour.

Joseph_L

For me, this was the highlight of my Galway trip. Sean did an amazing job telling stories and introducing us to what makes Galway unique. I not only was entertained and had a great time, but felt that I understood Galways much better afterwards!

laurabloomm

Sean gave one of the most interactive and entertaining walking tours I’ve had the pleasure of attending. He even personalized our tour based on our family’s history. He has certainly been blessed with the “gift of the gab” and if one is in Galway, they should absolutely give him a go!

CherylSabes68

Sean was amazing! He was knowledgeable, entertaining, articulate, happy to answer ?’s…Can’t say enough good things!

Alan B

Saw this free walking tour advertised in Skeff, just alongside Eyre Square. 11am so we met there with our guide Connor. A young man who has lived in Galway all his life. His walk was not too harsh as I have arthritis. He had time to chat to people from all over the world who came on the walk. His delivery was informative but also a lot of fun,. The idea is to give him a tip for how good the tour was. More than happy.
Collected by Evendo, Tripadvisor & Viator
2024-04-14 06:12