Although the sun does often shine in Galway, we’re used to having a rainy day or two… so we’ve got great ideas to keep you entertained, even if it’s a bit wet outside!
From indoor attractions to keep the kids entertained, to museums that keep you all dry AND educated, spend just one rainy day in Galway and you’ll soon learn that your fun doesn’t have to stop.
And best of all, because the city is so compact, getting to most of the destinations below is easily achieved on foot (especially if you’re staying at our Galway city centre hotel). Trust us, you’ll never find yourself traipsing through the rain for hours trying to find something to do.
9 Things to Do on a Rainy Day in Galway
Whether you’re on your own, looking for some indoor activities in Galway for adults, or have your family in tow, there are plenty of fun things to do in Galway on a rainy day! Granted, you might not be strolling merrily down Quay Street, but you can still choose from one of these activities to do in Galway in the rain:
1. Galway Coffee Shops
Start the day off with a warm comforting cup of coffee (or tea) and a scone from one of Galway’s cosy coffee shops (our picks are the Badger & Dodo and the Secret Garden). These Galway coffee spots have loads of comfy sofas and chairs to snuggle up into while you get yourself ready for the day ahead.
Once you’ve got your caffeine fix, race through the showers our next destination…
Is there a better way to spend a rainy day in Galway than in food heaven? With hundreds of stalls under Galway Market’s roof canopy, this market not only provides fresh local produce but also the biggest variation of foods. Whether it’s a quick coffee, lunch-on-the-go or a perch down dinner you’re after, you’ll find it here.
Whatever you’re in the mood for, Galway Market can provide it – from crepes to falafel and Banh Mi, the list is endless!
2. Galway Aquarium
Whether you’re traveling with little ones, or your group is all adults, any fan of marine life will want to save some time to explore this fascinating and diverse aquarium. At the Galway Atlantaquaria, Ireland’s biggest aquarium, the octopus always steals the show.
If you can tear yourself away from this fascinating creature, you’ll also be able to help out with feeding the smaller fish at set times of the day. From native Irish sharks to clownfish to a giant fin whale skeleton, visitors can step up close to the glass and feel like they’re diving under the Atlantic ocean. Plus, it’s only a few minutes away from Galway city centre.
Other rainy-day activities in Galway the kids will love include:
3. Galway Museums
Galway is in no short supply of galleries, with Galway City Museum, Galway Arts Centre and the Vanda Luddy Art Gallery remaining perennially popular choices for tourists seeking refuge from bad weather. Happily, the bulk of these are also free and the fascinating artifacts and displays will keep you amused for hours, with absolutely no need to go outside.
But why not try some of the many smaller galleries that the surrounding countryside has to offer, while you’re at it? Whitethorn Gallery in Clifden is renowned for its landscapes produced by local artists, while Spiddal Crafts in Connemara exhibits the folk art of noted Brazilian artist Andrea Rossi.
4. Galway Escape Rooms
After you’ve spent a couple of hours wandering around a Galway museum, make a quick dash over to one of Galway’s escape rooms. Escape rooms have become all the rage in recent years and with the amount of fun that you can have with a group of friends in an hour, it’s no real surprise why. Galway has a couple options here for you:
The basic premise of all of these? You and a team of escapees are locked into a room full of hidden clues and cryptic pieces. You all have one hour to work together to solve the puzzles, find the key and get yourself out of there.
5. Galway Cathedral
Another great option for bad weather is a journey inside one of the city’s most iconic religious structures – the historic Galway Cathedral.
One of the most recognizable exteriors in all of the city centre, with its impressive octagonal dome, the cathedral also boasts one of the most beautiful and elaborate interiors.
6. Galway City Karting
If you’re looking for another rainy-day activity that both kids and adults will love, Galway City Karting might be it.
This 20,000 square feet indoor kart track is nothing short of spectacular and will be the entertainment you need for hours and hours of enjoyment.
7. Galway Cinemas
A trip to the cinema is a staple when it comes to rainy day activities for family members of all ages. With cinemas like the IMC Cinema Galway, the Pálás Cinema and the Eye Cinema on your doorstep, you can choose to catch the latest blockbuster flick or arthouse film.
If you have your heart set on some outdoor activities in Galway and exploring the surrounding countryside, we always say not to let a little drizzle (not counting a full-blown storm, of course) derail your plans. (It’s worth keeping a close eye on the weather forecast for Galway.)
Galway is one of those places where you can experience all four seasons in one day, so you’re bound to encounter rain at some point as you go about your sightseeing. Once you have a rain jacket and some waterproof boots on, you should be all set for the activities in the articles below, come rain or shine!