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Let’s not lie, we all love to get a good Instagram picture. Whether you admit it or not, you feel that buzz of joy with every like notification. Luckily, Galway is the most picturesque city filled with Instagrammable Places. With narrow criss-crossing cobbled streets, colourful street art, and medieval architecture. The whole city is heaving with atmosphere and more importantly, places to make your gram stand out.

It won’t be hard to start wracking up those likes with these Insagrammable places in Galway City:

But first, What does Instagrammable mean?

Instagrammable basically just means anything that is worth posting on Instagram. But in recent years, this definition has really developed into a whole lot more.

As well as referring to anything worth posting on the gram, it means photogenic, attractive and generally, following some Instagram trend – A mysterious girl from the back in a beautiful location, a flat lay of a cup of coffee in a cafe. You know it when you see it!

Instagram is now influencing so much in our lives from our outfits, to our holiday destinations. I mean, people have always wanted to wear nice clothes and visit scenic places, but Instagram has taken this to the next level. So are you ready for your Instagram fix in Galway?

Let’s get into some of the most Instagrammable places in Galway City. 

*BUT FIRST, if you would be interesting in taking a tour of Galway’s Instagrammable spots with a Galway photographer and Instagrammer to really up your game, check out the end of the post for Insta Tours Galway*

Instagrammable Walls and murals:

Kelsey Montague Mural – Instagrammable Angel Wings Galway City

What says Instagram more than wall murals? Well just on Eyre Square you’ll find stunning wings painted on a wall beside O’Connell’s bar. These were painted by Kelsey Montague. Kelsey is a US artist and has left her artwork in cities all over the world.

The Wings in Galway are part of her “What Lifts You” campaign. The idea is to take a picture at the wings and post it along with what inspires you most. Such a beautiful idea. And there you go, an Instagrammable place in Galway, as well as the caption, sorted all-in-one!

This is the only work done by Kelsey in Ireland, so get Instagramming! My shot will be coming soon.

Streets

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The Long Walk

The Long Walk is an iconic row of houses along Galway Bay in the Claddagh area of Galway City. It’s sometimes described as the most photographed street in Galway. While I’m not sure if that’s true, it certainly would be close. It screams Instagram with its row of cute coloured, uneven-sized houses along the waterfront.

*This street also features heavily in Ed Sheeran’s Galway Girl Video – Check back for a post of all the other locations in the video soon.

So, get your creative juices flowing with a stroll down the Long Walk where you’re bound to get that shot for the gram.

Quay Street, Cross Street & Shop Street – Instagrammable Streets in Galway

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The linear walk from pedestrian shop street to High Street, Quay Street and perpendicular Cross Street is undoubtedly the most walked and most popular streets of the city. Each street bleeds into the next. The cobbled and paved pedestrian path is so charming and picturesque. And on a summers day, the atmosphere is infections. My uncle once said “you can’t walk down shop street without smiling”, and it’s true.

Instagrammable streets in Galway, cobbled street, colourful shopfront, wooden heart

This is probably the most Instagrammable place in Galway and you will see cameras and phones snapping away in every direction. Bustling with tourists, buskers, music, colorful shopfronts and flags; it really is the heart and essence of Galway city. A trip to Galway City would not be complete without getting an Instagram here.

The Canal Walk – Instagrammable Walk in Galway

The Canal Walk is a short, but pretty walk placed between the canal and the river Corrib, winding its way along the edge of the city. It starts at the stone archway beside the born clothing store near the Salmon Weir bridge. You can follow it right along to the Claddagh, coming out at the Wolfe Tone Bridge.

There are Instagrammable locations the whole way along the walk but there is one specific place id recommend. Just before coming up at Bridge Street halfway through the walk, you will get perfect views of the river passing under the bridge and a canal pouring in from the other side. Such an Instagrammable place in Galway!

Medieval Galway

Galway has a strong history and is the only medieval city in Connacht. There are great instagrammable places in the city reflecting this past.

Spanish Arch

the spanish arch in galway, stone, medieval, archeway, instagrammable places galway

No one knows for sure where the name came from. The Spanish Arch likely received its name due to the Spanish boats that were in and out of the bay regularly. The archway still stands and is the entranceway to the long walk.

It is an extremely Instagrammable place in Galway with the archway and the piece of quay jutting out into the river beside it being popular with locals and tourists alike for sitting and taking in the views.

The Latin Quarter

The Latin Quarter is one of the oldest parts of the city that encompasses its medieval past. It is undoubtedly the most picturesque part of Galway and definitely the most instagrammable. It takes in some places already mentioned like Quay Street and Cross Street but another instrammable place in the Latin quarter is Kirwan’s lane.

galway city, ireland

 

Other Instagrammable places in Galway

The Claddagh – Instagrammable places in Galway City

The Claddagh was once a separate fishing village and the oldest area of the city. it’s close to the city centre being just a couple minutes walk away. In its day, the area was lined with thatched cottages but sadly these are gone now.

It is so beautiful at sunset and a great place to get your camera out. In summer you’ll find every inch of ground occupied. As the place is thronged with people, drinking along the water enjoying the sun.

The Claddagh ring also originated here over 400 years ago.

Galway Cathedral

The cathedral stands bold along the River Corrib and although not religious myself, I can’t deny that it makes for a great photograph. With the Salmon Weir Bridge and the canal and river running in front, you are sure to get that Instagram shot.

Blackrock Diving Board Salthill – Insgrammable spot

While not technically part of the city, Salthill diving board can not be left out of instagrammable places in Galway. In the nearby village of Salthill just 1.4 km from the city, it is walking distance along the beautiful coast.

The diving board is for sure the most instagrammed part of Salthill. Whether there are people queuing down the steps to jump off in summer or the angry waves are hurling themselves over the top of it in winter, it’s a great place to get some shots.

Although originally rejected when being built, it’s now the most iconic spot in Salthill.

Map of Instagrammable Places in Galway

Luckily with Galway being such a small city, all the attractions are super close together and are walkable distance from one another. You can see all the instagrammable places in Galway in a short space of time and while exploring the rest of the city. Below is a map of the way I recommend you see them:

Map of instagrammable places galway

While you can visit these locations in any order you wish, I’ve put this together to be the most efficient way to see the Instagrammable places in the city. I also considered the time of day and business while making the map. I recommend going early before it is too busy. From *quiet* Eyre Square in the morning, you can walk out and back in to the city, stopping off at Galway Cathedral and coming back into the city by the Canal walk.

This would be a great time to stop off for lunch which is why I have the Latin quarter next. Restaurants with mouthwatering food in every direction. If you’d like to see my favourite restaurants, click to view my “coolest places to eat in Galway” post.

After that is a good time to go out and enjoy the Claddagh, including the Spanish arch and Long walk. Hopefully, the sun won’t be too high by the time you go out this direction meaning the lighting won’t be too harsh for your Instagram shots too!

visiting menlo castle, menlo castle, galway city attractions

Instagrammable places near Galway city

  • NUIG
  • Menlo Castle
  • Silver Strand

 

Interested in a Guided Tour of the Insta Hotspots?

Insta Tours have just expanded to Cork and Galway city. What does this mean? It means you can do a guided tour of these spots plus some more with a Galway Photographer and Instagrammer. You will get the best photography tips as well as get answers to any questions on upping your Instagram game too.

What will you get from booking into an Insta Tour of Galway? 
  • You will learn how to shoot the BEST shots for Instagram, right from your smartphone.
  • Explore Galway Cities’ best photography spots including some hidden gems along the way.
  • And maybe most importantly, learn all you need to know to up your Instagram game: all about upping your engagement and reach.

If you want to book a tour, please check out this link: https://insta.tours/galway-walking-tour/

You never know, maybe I’ll be your tour guide!

Galway Instagram Hashtags

Now that you’ve got your amazing Instagram shots, you need to consider the best hashtags to use to get the best reach and show them off.

There are so many hashtags to choose from and I always recommend doing some research to pick the best ones to suit your shot, these are my go-to Galway and Ireland hashtags:

Galway:

#thisisgalway #galwayireland #galwaycity #galwaybay #galwaygirls #loveconnemara #visitgalway #connacht

Ireland:

#irelandlove #littlepiecesofireland #thefullirish_ #lovinireland #irishcentral #icuireand #irelandcalling #westisbest #wildatlanticway #wanderireland #irelandinspires #tourismeirlandais #instantirelande

Christmas in galway, galway city, christmas time, christmas lights, street photography, tourist

Instagram captions – perfect for your Galway Instagram shots

Instagram captions can also have an effect on how well your post does. While I like to discuss what was happening around taking the picture, there’s nothing wrong with a simple quote caption. It is said that longer captions do the best with your photos but ultimately it is the shot that counts. Whether you want to do a who/what/where/why caption or simply “Galway girl” it’s up to you. Personally I do prefer longer captions and enjoy reading what people have to say.

Song quotes including Mentions Of Galway

  • “my soul to sour forevermore, above you Galway bay” My own dear Galway bay
  • “Boys I ain’t never seen nothing like a Galway girl” – The Galway girl
  • “My pretty little Galway girl” – Galway girl Ed Sheeran
  • Just to watch the suds roll down by Galway bay – Galway bay

Quotes about Galway

  • There are no strangers here, only friends that you haven’t met yet – W.B. Yeats

Final thoughts

So there you have it. The best Instagrammable places in Galway city as well as the hashtags and captions to ensure your new post gets the reach it deserves.

I hope you enjoyed my post on “the most Instagrammable places in Galway City” and found it helpful. If you did,

comment below

and tell me how it helped!

And if you enjoyed my pictures, don’t forget to follow me on Instagram!

 

Tinyboots 

Instagrammable bars and restaurants coming soon! 

Please note, Images are my own and are subject to the laws of copyright.



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Other places to visit in Galway: 

Visiting Menlo Castle | A Hidden Gem near Galway City Centre

Cool Places to Eat in Galway

Why you should go to the Macnas Halloween parade in Galway

Christmas in Galway | Winter Bucket list for Galway City

Malin head is the most northerly point of Ireland and has some of the most amazing scenery. I say that about almost everywhere, but damn Ireland has some jaw-dropping landscapes. If you want to see waves hurling themselves at jagged cliffs, green lush hills, gold-sand beaches and rocky mountains, Malin head in Donegal is where you want to go.

malin head, cliffs, water, sunset, ireland

What to see / things to do at Malin Head Donegal

Banbas Crown

Banbas crown is the area of Malin Head right where you park.

There is a lower car park which now has proper toilets (amazing!- it used to just have 2 portaloos!) and up a short path there is another small car park right at the crown. On a nice day you might find a coffee or food van at the top.

At this point you’ll come across the old signal station dating back to the 1800s. On a good clear day you may be able to catch a glimpse of the Scottish hills across the North Atlantic too.

If you look down from the tower, you’ll see the old “80 Eire sign, from back in war times, used as a landmark  for pilots passing over. The area is also home to one of Ireland’s most important weather stations.

banbas crown, donegal, malin head

From Banbas Crown, you can walk along the coast by a gravel path and head out west along the coast. It’s well worth the walk so wrap up well against the wild Atlantic winds and prepare for a awe-inspiring walk.

Hells Hole

A weird name I must admit although that may be my crude sense of humour. By continuing along the path, passed the jagged rocks and swirling waves you’ll come to “Hell’s Hole”. This is a 30m deep fissure where the ocean crashes  itself at the rocks.

Continuing on from here you will arrive at the Malin Head Viewpoint:

malin head, cliffs, water

Malin Head Viewpoint

Although not the most northerly point, the viewpoint is the real treat when visiting Malin head. At the end of your walk you will come to the most insane, huge rocky cliffs which literally just drop down into the raging waters below.

This is the most amazing place to witness sunset. I was there on new years day 2019 and as the sun sunk slowly below the horizon it left an orange glow on the area. If you can get there for sunset definitely do!

When you pull up at the car park you may not even realise this insane view is just 15 minutes walk away so definitely take the walk along the coast to reach this point.

malin head, cliffs, water, sunset, ireland

Other important events you may experience at Malin head – if you’re lucky!

Star Wars – May the 4th Be With you in Donegal

Malin head, and the rest of Donegal, holds huuuge significance for all the star wars fans out there (I am a new star wars fan and pretty excited about it!). Malin head is just one of the locations in Ireland used for filming “The Last Jedi”.

In fact, the millennium falcon was actually built at Malin head for filming.

To celebrate this, the main road to Malin head (originally R242) has been renamed to “R2D2” which is pretty fun I think! So, if you’re passing by you might as well hop out of the car and get a picture by the sign!

The “May the 4th be with you” festival is highly celebrated in the area due to the Star Wars universe coming to Ireland. If you are in the area on this day, you might just see some stormtroopers taking a spin through Malin head and the nearby towns.

There is a Star Wars tour of the area. For more information go through to the website.

cliffs, ireland

The Northern Lights – Amazing Malin Head Attraction in Donegal

I’m pretty sure seeing the northern lights is on every bodies bucket list. Well, this magical light show is known to pass over Malin head during the right conditions.

I haven’t seen it yet but I full on intend to witness it and will be heading to Malin head at every chance I get when the conditions are right!

There are some Apps out there to keep an eye out for the right conditions for the northern lights in Donegal!

The History of Malin Head

 

Malin head has a rich history and the area was very useful in war times.

Signal Tower

The signal tower was originally built as a lookout in 1805 by the British, to keep watch for French invaders during the Napoleonic wars. This is very similar to the one on Valentia Island which was built for the same purpose.

The watchtower was used in both WW1 and WW2 and has concrete bunkers. During world war 2, the area was monitored 24 hours a day.

From 1902 the area by the tower was also used as a means to communicate with ships off the coast, with a signal station built nearby.

Eire Sign

The “Eire” sign also dates back to WW2. The sign was created using stones, which were painted white, used for pilots flying over the area. This sign was to indicate that they were flying over neutral Ireland. The number 80 refers to the watchtower number, which you guessed it- was number 80! This area was recently restored.

Inishtrahull – for Geology Nerds!

The inner geologist in my finds it incredibly interesting, that on an island just 5 miles northeast of Malin head is the island of Inishtrahull. This island is made up of the oldest rocks in Ireland – at 1780 million years old!

Where is Malin Head & How to get there

Malin head, as I’ve said is the most northerly point and is on the Inishowen peninsula. It is 16 km north of Malin town. You will want to be driving to reach it and many tours also visit this significant location.

 

The weather and how to prepare for Malin head

malin head, cliffs, water

As you can imagine, being at a location completely exposed to the Atlantic sea, the area is subject to crazy fierce winds most of the time. The weather can definitely get wild – it’s called the wild Atlantic way for a reason! The wind can get up yourselves and to your ears and can be bitter so you’ll want to be prepared for that. I would suggest:

  • A windproof and waterproof jacket
  • A hat that covers your ears
  • Comfy and waterproof walking shoes

The area is also on marsh and bog land so it can get pretty waterlogged. I have visited the area both very prepared for the weather and very unprepared. Not dressing appropriately can really dampen your visit (literally!) as you’ll be jumping from foot to foot trying to stay warm and will be completely terrorized by the wind out at Malin head viewpoint. Take it from me!

 

Places nearby Malin Head to Visit:

  • 5 finger strand / Lag : An amazing beach sandwiched between sand dunes and Trawbrega Bay across the water. Along here are some of the largest in sand dunes in Europe, reaching unto 30 meters in height. A great place to view from is Knockamany bends which has a small parking area looking out over the area.
  • Five Finger Strand is located right along the main road from Malin village to Malin Head.

donegal ireland, places to see

  • Carrickabraghy Castle: Carrickabraghy Castle is also nearby. The ruins stand on a rocky outcrop near Ballylifin
  • Doagh beach: another stunning beach near the castle above. It is on Doagh Island/ Isle of Doagh which as you have probably guessed, used to be an island. It’s now a small peninsula. The Doagh Famine Village is located beside it – a museum about the Great Famine.
  • Kinnagoe bay: You’ve guessed it, a beach. What can I say, Donegal has some of the countries best coastline.
  • Culdaff Beach
  • Glenevin waterfall: this waterfall in Clonmany is well worth a visit. From the car park, it is a short walk to the falls. The area was almost fully destroyed by bad weather in 2019? but it’s been restored.



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Malin Head is for sure one of the must-visit places in Ireland. Not only because it is the most northerly point, but also for the outrageous views that the area boasts.

Tinyboots 

If you want to check back at this post in future, be sure to pin it! 

 

 

 

The Gap of Dunloe is an unbelievably scenic pass near Killarney, winding its way between Ireland’s largest mountain range – the Macgillycuddy reeks – and the purple mountain. It’s a landmark that must be visited on any trip to Killarney. If you ask me, this drive is more breathtaking than the nearby famous Ring of Kerry.  Come on, a winding narrow road meandering its way through the mountains. You’ll pass over old stone bridges, you’ll see lakes,  mountains and multi-coloured sheep (yep really), ginormous boulders strewn across the landscape and noisy streams.  Ahhhh bliss wouldn’t ya say?! Visiting the Gap of Dunloe is a must on a trip to Kerry, and should take one of the top spots on your Ireland Bucketlist.

Visiting old ruins in Ireland is something I really enjoy doing. I find them so mysterious. My imagination runs wild trying to picture what life was like there. Afterward, I love looking into the history of these places. I get sentimental for all these places I’ve never been and lives I have not lived. Clifden Castle is one of these places. It is absolutely beautiful and can only fantasize about how good it looked in its day. If you’re in Clifden or Connemara in General, why not take a look?

Clifden Castle

Clifden Castle is a young gothic castle and came to be in 1818. The castle was home of John D’arcy, the founder of Clifden town. It can be found on the scenic Sky Road drive in Galway, just 3 km outside of the town and if you ask me – it’s worth a visit!

clifden castle, clifden, galway, ireland, ruins, ivy

The History of Clifden Castle – Magical Castle in County Galway

John D’arcy

The castle was built in 1818. It was built for John D’arcy and his family and was a gothic style castle overlooking the Atlantic ocean. It seems John had a thing for history, as this he built the castle to look like an Irish castle from hundreds of years previous. In addition, he also added standing stones to mimic the many megalithic relics around the country.

As well as the castle, he owned an estate across Connemara over 17,000 acres. John had dreams of improving the lives of those in the area. As most of you will know, Connemara is a pretty desolate region. It was even more so back then. This is why he created Clifden town, which is just 3 km from the castle. It’s nice to know that by the time of his death he had achieved this. He had established Clifden which still stands as the friendly and charming tourist town we know today.

After his death in 1839, he left the castle and estate to his son. However, within a decade it sold again. Due to the Great Famine, his son Hyacinth could not afford to keep the castle.

clifden castle, clifden, galway, ireland, ruins, ivy

The Eyres

The castle was purchased and became a holiday home to the Eyres. They were an English family who bought the castle and the town. They lived here until almost 1920s after which, the valuables were sold.

Joyce

From here the history of the castle becomes quite crazy. A local butcher -Joyce- bought the land to use for his cattle. Although this caused an uproar in the region. A number of small farmers wanted to purchase the land to expand their farms. Things got a bit out of hand as they barricaded Joyce from the land and replaced his herd with their own. Joyce finally sold the land as the locals repeatedly drove his animals away. It was decided up by the farmers and anything left in the castle was stripped and sold, including the roof and rafters. As you can imagine, once the roof was gone it very quickly became a ruin. Now just an empty shell on the landscape which still stands today.

It always makes me sad to see a building like this left to ruin. I’d imagine it was an amazing home back in its day.

Directions to Clifden Castle

clifden castle, clifden, galway, ireland, ruins, ivy

Clifden castle is very easy to find. It’s in Galway, on the Sky Road Drive. Just 3 km west of Clifden along the coast. In addition, there is a sign for it and you can’t miss the castle walls and gate at the entrance. You can’t actually see the castle from the road here but there are great views of it along the Sky road Drive.

Visiting the Castle

clifden castle, clifden, galway, ireland, ruins, ivy

You can only visit the castle on foot. Although, there is a small parking area at the gates. I wouldn’t exactly call it a car park people essentially just abandon ship along the road. From the gates, it is a short walk down a narrow lane. The castle emerges around a corner and even as a ruin, it is an impressive building – although not old at all in terms of the majority of Irish Castles.

The castle has no fee for entry. Truth be told, it is on private land. It is on land owned by a few locals but it appears most of them have no objection to visiting the grounds. However, they do not want people to enter the building. The ruins could be unstable so it is understandable they do not wish to be liable for any injury.

ruins galway

You can walk around the grounds to the back of the property. This is where you’ll get the best view of the castle I think. With the ivy-covered walls and an entrance to the castle.

There is a huge drop inside the front entrance of the castle as the floor is gone, so be careful.

ruins in connemara

Because it’s not widely advertised as an attraction in the area, it tends to be really quiet there. Perfect for those looking for hidden gems off the beaten track!

You may notice some standing stones on your exploration. John D’arcy had these added to resemble other standing stones around Ireland.

Note

  • There is no historical information at the castle so research before or after
  • No fee
  • It is on private property so be respectful
  • As mentioned, the owners do not want people to go inside as they could be held responsible for any injury on the property (which I don’t think is fair if you are entering voluntarily you should not be holding the owners responsible).  If you are entering be very careful and respectful.

clifden castle, clifden, galway, ireland, ruins, ivy

Other things to do in Clifden or nearby:

  • The Sky Road Drive
  • Clifden Town
  • Diamond Hill
  • John D’arcy Memorial – I think after visiting the castle, it’s nice to visit the memorial built for John D’arcy. It is up a short hike on a hill overlooking Clifden town. Known for the best views of Clifden.

Other FAQ

sanding stone

Clifden Castle ticket prices?

This attraction isn’t a public attraction. It is privately owned, with no guided tours or anyone present at the building. There is no fee or charge to visit. However, the area is owned by multiple landowners and as a result, some are less eager to have people visit than others. You may be asked to leave the property and it is advised that you do not enter the castle. As it is not being specifically used as a tourist attraction, it is not stabilized.

Are there guided tours of the building?

No. You may walk down the lane and look at the castle but there are no staff or facilities there. If a landowner comes along and asks you to leave they are in their right to do so.

Is Clifden Castle Haunted?

During the famine, the surrounding tenants gathered at the castle begging for food and work. In the region huge numbers of people starved to death. Some people like to think the castle is haunted by the poor souls who were ravished by starvation and perished during the Great Famine. However, while I was there I didn’t get any spooky vibes.

Final Thoughts on Clifden Castle

It’s sad to hear learn how a magnificent castle can fall to ruin. Clifden Castle is one such story. I absolutely loved visiting the grounds and getting to see what is left of the building. It’s in a stunning area of Connemara and just along the Sky road. Definitely worth a visit.

 

Tinybootsclifden castle, clifden, galway, ireland, ruins, ivy

If you enjoyed Clifden Castle, you might like this post on Menlo Castle – a castle ruins in Galway City with a tragic past:

Visiting Menlo Castle | A Hidden Gem near Galway City Centre

Resources:

The following links have some more information on this place.

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