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GALWAY INTERNATIONAL OYSTER FESTIVAL | GALWAY, IRELANDby Norma Poindexter


Galway’s culture is one giant celebration of the most breathtaking seascapes and the tastes of the sea, along the world renowned Wild Atlantic Way that stretches 800 miles from Cork to Galway Bay with its abundance of top quality, family harvested oysters, mussels, salmon, lobster and crabs. The atmosphere, the culture, the people and events of Galway, the Festival Capital of Ireland with over 122 extraordinary festivals and events annually, pour over Galway’s historic Medieval cobblestone streets, all packed with artists, writers, musicians, and philosophers, who everyday embrace their proximity to this incredible ocean bounty and beauty. Ocean is in their blood.



As the unofficial cultural capital of Ireland with multitudes of Michelin awarded restaurants, gorgeous 5-star hotels, beautiful art galleries, and music-filled pubs, you can walk everywhere, except to take stunning day trips to the starkly, resplendent Aran Islands directly offshore and Galway Bay’s coastal inlets that harbor white beaches and incredible sunsets. Galway strongly embraces the finest local foods, and you can choose to dine at a multitude of Galway’s 5-star restaurants like the innovative, Michelin-starred restaurant, Aniar, with contemporary terroir-based dining and local earth ingredients and influences, or at the Ard Bia, one of Galway’s most enduring restaurants and Food and Wine’s regional award winner with the finest locally grown ingredients. Galway is known to produce the most successful traditional Irish musicians performing their vibrant traditional Irish music. So, after your dinner, you stroll the streets filled with melodic music and lively pubs, stopping at our favorites, Tigh Coili, and Tigh Neachtain, famous for their Irish Music sessions and having a sing-song with local mixed clientele and musical celebrities. For your 5-star overnight experience after a vibrant day or evening celebrating Galway’s atmosphere, you can choose to stay directly on the picturesque Galway Bay at the luxurious Sea Breeze Lodge B&B with the coveted International Five Star Award or the award-winning Galway Bay Hotel; at an elegant 1740 manor house, Glenlo Abbey Hotel with its challenging golf course, or intown at the historic, grand Hardiman or award-winning polished hotel designed by Philip Treacy, The G Hotel and Spa, both in the Galway City Centre at the center of all the action.

You’re visit to Galway should include Ireland’s longest running and greatest gourmet extravaganza, The Galway International Oyster and Seafood Festival, run since 1954. The oldest oyster festival in the world, deemed by gourmet organizations as “1 of 50 things you must do before you die”, draws thousands of gourmet foodie visitors to sample the world-famous native Galway Oysters at the end of September each year. You’ll find the festival featured prominently in global media such as Travel and Leisure Magazine, Conde Nast and the New York Times for the World Oyster Shucking Championships, fun-filled Mardi Gras, animated street parades, renowned global entertainers and celebrities, and of course, for the celebrated Irish hospitality.

Named the European Capital of Culture for 2000, Galway offers you the celebratory experience and diversity of its culture and its people, and a sample of the freshest, tastiest seafood along the West Coast, with no chance of ever getting bored.


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