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Day Four In Galway: A Walking Tour of the City

Sunday was a fairly lazy day catching up on some rest. In the evening, I caught a lift into town with my AirBnB host Laura’s friend Brien. Brien’s plans for the evening were canceled, so he offered to show me around the city instead. We stopped first at the National University of Ireland Galway campus, formerly Queens College, and wandered around the grounds for a few minutes.

Brien lived in an apartment across the street from the Mill Street Garda Station, which was handy for my research, and while he was taking some groceries up into his apartment, I took some photographs of the station and the surrounding area, including a beautiful cherry blossom tree on the bank of the canal.

We then walked up along the docks toward the Spanish Arch and Claddagh as the sun began to set. Claddagh, meaning ‘the shore’ in Irish, is an area close to the centre of Galway city, where the River Corrib meets Galway Bay. It was formerly a fishing village, just outside the old city walls. It is just across the river from the Spanish Arch, which was the location of regular fish markets where the locals supplied the city with seafood as recently as the end of the 19th century. People have been gathering seafood and fishing from the area for millennia. It is one of the oldest former fishing villages in Ireland – its existence having been recorded since the arrival of Christianity in the 5th century.

Brien then proceeded to show me the sites of the city, including

 

We decided to get a bite to eat at McDonagh’s Fish and Chip Shop. Opened in 1902, McDonagh’s have been in business for four generations, and serve a great piece of fish with chips and mushy peas!

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After McDonough’s we decided to have a drink at Tigh Neachtain, a bar which stocks over 130 whiskeys.  Twenty euros got me a whiskey tasting platter- being no expert myself, all I could tell you was that the outside two were sweet and fruity and the middle one was very strong! And then there was the pint of Cosmic Cow, a locally brewed dark stout made with milk!

I intended to go to Letterfrack the following day to research the site of St Joseph’s Industrial School, a former reformatory school responsible for many deaths of children. I had a little sleep in instead, but I will get onto that in the next post.

 

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