Cliffs and The Quays

Galway Travel Blog

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Nikki and I

People who made my travels more enjoyable: Nikki (USA)

We woke up early and made our way to the dining room at our B&B. It was quite a large place (10+ rooms) and there were a number of guests already eating breakfast. I enjoyed some yogurt and fresh berries, while Nikki ate a cheese omelet. After our breakfast we packed up and hit the road. Destination Galway, with a brief stop at the Cliffs of Moher.

By this point I was feeling pretty comfortable in the car. We cruised along on a series of N class roads that were considerably wider than the day before. The directions to our destination were pretty straightforward and we were making good time. An interesting thing we noticed while driving was that the majority of radio stations in Ireland are some form of news/talk radio.

The Cliffs of Moher
Quite different from American radio that is mostly a mixture of music/commercials (not including NPR, the best radio station period). On a number of these stations there would be a conversation, followed by an open ended question that listeners could call in and respond to. The problem was that the listeners would call in on their cell phones and they were impossible to hear. It ended up being pretty comical hearing some muffled response that I'm sure the DJ couldn't even understand!

After severals hours of driving, that included a very windy ferry crossing, we reached the Cliffs of Moher. The cliffs were probably the most naturally beautiful site we saw in Ireland. There isn't much to do except walk up to the edge and take some pictures, which is exactly what we did. There is a gift shop and a little museum, but we didn't spend much time in either.
But I am le tired!
I could tell you again and again how spectacular the cliffs were, but I think the pictures speak for themselves.

I started to realize how the driving and long days were starting to take their toll on me. Here I was, at one of Ireland's most famous tourist attractions, and all I wanted to do was curl up in a bed and go to sleep! I'm sure most travelers feel this way, your mood and energy level will greatly affect how much you enjoy a particular place. This level of exhaustion only became worse as we departed for Galway.

The drive to Galway was, again, very straightforward. The only problem was the terrible condition of the road and the fast pace of the traffic. As we drove around Galway Bay, we saw some fascinating hills that were devoid of any trees or plant life.
Castle above the Cliffs
Unfortunately, Nikki was asleep and it wasn't safe for me to take pictures while driving.

We reached Galway and somehow (there were hardly any signs once we actually reached the city) made our way to the hostel. Directly in front of said hostel was a conveniently located parking garage. Naturally we parked our car and went inside. Upon check-in, the front desk manager told us that the parking garage was privately owned. Even worse, he did not have a key to unlock the main gate. The conversation went something like this...

Me: "We just parked our car in the garage next door, hope thats ok"
Front desk manager X: "Wow thats crazy! That is a private garage and we don't have a key"
Me: "Well all of our stuff is inside our car... How are we going to get out"
Front desk manager X: "I've never heard of such a thing! I really have no idea"
Me: "Can I use your phone so that I can call the building manager and see if he/she can let us in?"
Front desk manager X: "No, sorry dude, that phone is for staff only.
Our Hostel :(
.."

At this point I almost strangled the guy. It seemed absolutely impossible that we were the first, and only, people to ever park their car in a garage that is literally 5 feet from the entrance to the hostel. The attitude of the front desk manager was completely infuriating, and he offered no help whatsoever. When I explained that my change was in the car so I couldn't use the pay phone, he simply shrugged his shoulders. Luckily, the manager of the entire hostel showed up. He had a key that could unlock the gate, so he went outside with me and Nikki. Again the extreme lack of courtesy was apparent when he opened the door, and promptly left. This meant, we had to sprint to the car, get in, and drive out before the gate closed. We drove up the ramp as quickly as possible and got close enough to force the gate to stop closing.
Galway
I managed to squeeze out with about 3 inches to spare on each side of the car! The whole experience was beyond ridiculous.

After parking in a public lot that was 5 minutes away (obviously we should have known that was the preferred parking location) we made our way back to the hostel. We dropped off our stuff and headed for town. Literally the only redeeming quality of the place was its location.

We wandered around downtown and it became apparent that things were pretty dead. We eventually settled on a place to eat, The Quays (I'd read about it on travbuddy). It had a bit of a reputation as a hot party spot and I was hoping for something to liven up my evening. Sadly, this eclectic pub/restaurant was also dead. According to our waiter, a combination of the recession, and approaching exams at the local university were to blame.
The Quays
We ate our dinner and returned to the hostel. With nothing to do we went to sleep at about 9pm. Overall, I had high hopes for Galway, but in many ways it turned out to be a bit disappointing. On the bright side, we'd be traveling to Dublin the following morning.

kkrater says:
Well then you are much braver than I! hahah. I don't think I could ever bike in Ireland.
Posted on: Sep 20, 2010
jart2b says:
I feel your pain about the roads in Ireland! We opted to take the train and buses--it took alot of planning--(not the best system), but I didn't want to miss all that beauty while trying to navigate those scary roads!!--We felt the same way about Galway--Dingle was so much more beautiful--And we BIKED that scary road around Dingle Pennisula! What a ride!!-but better than a car!!!
Posted on: Jun 06, 2010
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Nikki and I
Nikki and I
The Cliffs of Moher
The Cliffs of Moher
But I am le tired!
But I am le tired!
Castle above the Cliffs
Castle above the Cliffs
Our Hostel :(
Our Hostel :(
Galway
Galway
The Quays
The Quays
Galway downtown
Galway downtown
Its so windy!
It's so windy!
More Castle
More Castle
Cars on the ferry
Cars on the ferry
Scared of heights?!
Scared of heights?!
Better view
Better view
Castle structure
Castle structure
North side of the cliffs
North side of the cliffs
More Cliffs
More Cliffs
Galway Hostels review
Terrible Service (Even for a Hostel)
I have nothing against hostels, I've stayed in a few that have been nice enough. Unfortunately, the Sleepzone Galway doesn't fall in to the nice enoug… read entire review
Galway
photo by: AleksandraEa