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Getting Around Galway

The best way to get around Galway is by foot. There are lots of tiny streets and pedestrian-only areas, so it's easy to get anywhere within the central business district on your own two feet. Another convenient, inexpensive option is the city's bike-share program. However, if you're hoping to explore the Wild Atlantic Way or the Cliffs of Moher on your own, you may want to rent a car. If you'd rather let someone else do the driving, you'll find several tour companies offer sightseeing packages. What's more, the city's bus system, Bus Éireann offers seasonal service to some of the more far-flung attractions, including the Cliffs of Moher.

The closest airport to Galway is Shannon Airport (SNN), which sits about 60 miles south of Galway. Bus Éireann provides service from Shannon Airport to Galway; tickets start at 60 euros (about $72) per adult. Major car rental companies, such as Hertz, Avis and Europcar, are also available for hire at the airport. Dublin Airport (DUB) is another option that's located approximately 130 miles east of Galway. Bus Éireann, along with a handful of other operators, also offers service from Dublin to Galway. Ireland West Airport Knock (NOC) is another option about 60 miles north of Galway, though it offers limited daily arrivals and departures from cities like London and Liverpool. From Knock, you can rent a car or hop on Bus Éireann to Galway. If you're looking for a more scenic route, consider taking the train from Dublin to Galway, which takes about 2 ½ hours. Irish Rail runs trips several times a day. Fares start at 16.99 euros (around $20) for adults when you book online. 

On Foot The city center is best seen on foot as many streets are pedestrian-only and you can easily reach all of the city's major attractions.

Bus Éireann offers bus service in and around the city. Most routes leave from Eyre Square in the center of town. For any route in the city longer than 7 ½ kilometers (4.6 miles), the fare costs 2.70 euro (around $3.20). Any route less than 7 kilometers costs 2.30 euro (or $2.70). If you purchase a rechargeable Leap Card, you'll get a 30-percent fare discount. You can purchase a Leap Card at various stations and shops.


There are 195 bicycles available to borrow or rent, at 16 stations around the city, through a bike-share program sponsored by Coca-Cola Zero. If you want to use a bike for less than 30 minutes, your trip is free, but even a three-day rental, at 3 euros (around $3.50) is a bargain.

Car If you need a car for daytrips and for exploring outside the city, rental cars can be picked up at the airport or in the city center. If you do rent a car, don't forget, you'll need to drive on the left side of the road. Speed limits are designated in kilometers per hour, so it’s a good idea to familiarize yourself with the conversions or print out a cheat sheet. Most car rental companies require a driver's license issued by the country you reside in, not an international driver's license. Check with your rental company in advance of your trip.  
Taxi If you need a taxi in town, it's easy to find one near hotels and major attractions.

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