Galway has a mild, humid, temperate and, why not say, unpredictable weather all year round due to winds from the North Atlantic Current. However, temperatures below 0 °C and above 30 °C are rare over there. The city receives an average of 1,156 mm of annual precipitation, which is evenly distributed throughout the year. In January the average temperature is 5.9 °C and in July it’s 15.9° C. Although extreme weather is rare, the Province and County of Galway can experience heavy wind storms - the result of vigorous depressions of the Atlantic that occasionally pass along the northwest coast of Ireland. Most of these storms happen between late fall and early spring. Due to the city's northerly location and longitude, Galway has long summer days. Daylight in midsummer comes before 04:30 am and lasts until 11:00 pm. During the winter, daylight comes around 08:30 am and is gone by 4:00 pm.
A blend of styles that’s suitable to people looking for a quieter, countryside city, while at the same time suiting the liveliest people with several pubs and restaurants that rock the nightlife in Galway.
City of the Tribes, as it is known, was originally founded as a fishing village near the Spanish Arch, where the Corrib River flows into the beautiful Bay of Galway.
By 1230, it was ruled by the Anglo-Normans under the command of Richard Mor de Burgh, but constant raids by the various clans in the region required the construction of defensive walls. Only then did the city begin to grow and prosper.
A letter was issued in 1396 by Richard II, who delegated governance powers to 14 families of local merchants. Each of the 14 tribes kept some independence, while still maintaining respectful links with the British crown.
In other parts of the county, however, the battles continued. The Battle of Aughrim, fought on July 12, 1691, was the last major land battle in Ireland. It involved the Williamite and Jacobite armies and its result changed the course of Irish history. The Williamites emerged victorious, but an estimated 9,000 soldiers lost their lives on that fateful day, remaining one of the bloodiest battles in Irish history.
In the 18th century Galway was more peaceful, with wealthy Protestant landlords building their estates instead of defensive castles. The Aughnanure Castle (15th century), as well as the Portumna Castle (17th century), are examples of beautiful historical heritage that remain perpetuated. However, these were times of great inequality, with Galway and other counties devastated by the Great Famine of 1845, thousands of people died and so many others emigrated from Ireland.
Galway's strategic coastal location and port have corroborated for successful trade routes with Portugal and Spain. In this way, the city prospered for many centuries. Later, other prominent seaports were built on the east coast, such as Dublin and Waterford, and the trade with Spain came to an end. It would be many years before Galway start to prosper again, but the legacy of the city's long and colorful history is still evident in the city's character and style.
Cost of Living
Cost of Living
Monthly estimate for one person (without rent): € 748.91
All available public transport in Ireland travels on land. Whether by bus, train, boat or ferry, the great advantage they have in common is that you can contemplate the beautiful landscape along the way.
To save money, the tip is to use the Leap Card (a prepaid card that works as a local Single Ticket).
The billing system, however, is different from Brazil, where fares have the same price, regardless of the itinerary. In Ireland, this varies depending on the distance traveled.
Buses are the main form of public transport in Galway. There are 15 routes in the city that operate by the companies Bus Éireann and City Direct. In Eyre Square, in the city center, is Galway's only train station - which connects the city with Dublin in just two and a half hours and departs every two hours.
Study and Work
With 35 beautifully preserved historical sites, 31 museums, 10 art galleries, and home to over 100 festivals a year, the city and county of Galway reverberates history and culture.
A favorite destination of exchange students, the city preserves its countryside mood, yet offers a buzzing nightlife around Eyre Square, the main square with the flags of the 14 merchant tribes that shaped the city in the Middle Ages. Today, however, there is no shortage of pubs over there, or musicians playing on the sidewalks to welcome so many people looking for fun. O'Connors and Taaffe are two of the region's main pubs that, in addition to the variety of labels you might expect, bring together a young crowd and top-quality music.
The natural landscape in Galway is also awesome and attracts visitors from all over Ireland to see the extraordinary Cliffs of Moher, as well as its beautiful beaches, waterfalls and mountains, which invite extreme sports practitioners and have great entertainment options for those looking for quality of life.
Learn more about studying in GALWAY
Find out why study in Galway with WEST 1
Why study in Galway
Home to major universities such as the National University of Ireland, Galway-Mayo Institute of Technology and Galway Techical Institute, the city is the perfect place for those looking to do more than just study English.
Due to its universities and technical courses, the region has also attracted foreign multinationals that are constantly arriving in Ireland. This scenario favors the search for the best prepared young people, willing to grab vacancies in the professional market.
6 Reasons to study in Galway
1. Students can work 20 hours a week. And 40 in June, July, August, and September, and from December 15th to January 15th
2. The region has 35 historic sites, 31 museums and 10 art galleries.
3. Queens College Galway opened in 1849 with only 68 students. Now the institution has more than 20,000 students enrolled.
4. Welcoming and very polite people
5. Free attractions like museums, parks and art galleries
6. One of the best cost-benefit places for exchange students looking for Ireland
It’s no wonder Galway is among the most sought-after regions in Ireland. Versatile, it provides a blend of styles that’s suitable to more reserved people seeking a quieter, countryside city. However, it doesn’t fail to honor its cultural appeal, hosting more than 100 festivals a year, or gifting the liveliest people with several pubs and restaurants that rock the nightlife in Galway.
The city that radiates light for more than 17 hours during the summer has a mild, humid, temperate climate and, why not say, unpredictable weather all year round due to winds from the North Atlantic Current. But extreme temperatures are rare over there, to the delight of those who prefer to escape the tropical heat.
Accommodation in Galway
Accommodation costs vary according to the state, city and type chosen. But regardless of your destination, when it comes to researching a place to live, always keep in mind the distance from your school and accessibility by public transport. That being said, let's see each type:
The hostels are good options for those who want to save money with accommodation. The rooms in general are shared, but there are also rooms for couples and private options. Preferred by young travelers, they have quite relaxed environments, with lots of socialization and therefore are very sought-after during high seasons.
They are kinda like hostels but offer private, couples and group rooms. The environment is less busy and more private than hostels, the prices are a bit more expensive, but still cheaper than hotels.
WEST 1 recommends that, at least for the first few weeks, students stay in a homestay, which are homes of Irish families or immigrants who have been in the country for many years. It’s there that the student begins to have contact with the Irish culture, put into practice what they learn at school, get to know the city and ask questions. To participate in this type of program, families are accredited by the Irish government, which guarantees total safety for the student.
After the homestay period, the student will already be more familiar with the school and the city. Feeling more independent, the next step is to share an apartment or a room with other students, many of them of different nationalities, which is a great experience and great for improving the language. The rent is usually paid weekly, furthermore it’s important to be aware of any additional fees.
Work in Galway
Many exchange students opt for Ireland for the possibility of reconciling study with regulated work. Opportunities, for the most part, are focused on hospitality and restaurants, cleaning companies, au-pairs or pubs. As language studies evolve, options expand into sales, reception, and other positions in various segments of local commerce.
Attractions in Galway
From the medieval street to the modern roads, there is plenty to see and do in Galway to appreciate its history. The Claddagh, meaning "the coast", is an example of an area notable for its historical repertoire. Originally, the region was an old fishing village dating from the 5th century. Today, the Claddagh area includes the Saint Mary's Dominican Church, a national school, and a community center. The original village was demolished in the 1930s and replaced by summer houses.
Legend has it that this area was most famous for the Claddagh ring created by jeweler Richard Joyce. The story tells that he was kidnapped by pirates on his way to the West Indies and his master taught him jeweler crafts. When he was released, he returned to Galway and set up his trade. The ring's design symbolizes love, friendship and loyalty and has two clasped hands holding a crowned heart. It’s a very popular souvenir among city visitors.
Lynch's Castle is another tourist spot that dates back to the medieval period. The castle has four floors with carved windows, gargoyles and ornamental moldings. Built by the powerful Lynch family as a protection against invasion, parts of the limestone building date from the 14th century, but most was built in the 16th century. The Lynches, of Anglo-Norman ancestry, were one of the powerful fourteen tribes that ruled Galway. Nowadays you can visit the ground floor, where there is a bank in operation. Pinned panels explain the building's history and architecture in detail.
Historical chapters aside, the natural landscape in Galway is also spectacular and attracts visitors from all over Ireland to see the extraordinary cliffs of Moher. Towering 214 meters above the ocean at its highest point, the cliffs extend eight kilometers along the West Clare coast. From the top you can choose which view you prefer to contemplate. To the north and west are the Aran Islands, Galway Bay, the Twelve Bens Mountains and The Maumturks. And atop the iconic Cliffs of Moher is the O'Brien Tower, another of Ireland's most photographed places, which stands firm against winds and the relentless Atlantic Ocean. But even more fascinating than the Cliffs of Moher’s panoramic views, is the view of the raging Atlantic Ocean below. Massive waves crash against the Cliffs over and over, tearing the rock and emitting an explosive sound wave and sending a salty mist into the air. It's a trip you’ll never forget!
Did you know?
Galway hosts an average of 122 festivals and events per year.
The (Roman Catholic) Cathedral of Our Lady Assumed into Heaven is built on the site of the old Galway gaol.
Galway was one of the counties most affected by the Great Famine (1845-47); approximately 20% of the population died.
St. Nicholas of Myra has been the patron saint of Galway since the 14th century. He lived in Greece in the 4th century, is considered the patron saint of children and is said to be the inspiration for the Santa Claus of modern times.
Lynch’s castle (the residence of one of the Mayors of Galway and now a bank) is the oldest building in Ireland in daily commercial use.
In 1473, Galway was almost destroyed by fire. However, this provided the impetus for its local wealthy citizens to erect lavish houses. The Lynch’s Castle, is an example of that.
In 1477, Christopher Columbus visited Galway, and the people of his birthplace, Genoa in Italy, presented a memorial to the people of Galway in commemoration of this visit.