Galway is home to a vibrant nightlife scene

The city has many, many pubs and bars as well as a few nightclubs.  The possibilities are endless, from a quiet night out with friends to traditional Irish music and storytelling, or a night out dancing.  The legal drinking age in Ireland is 18. There is a a Galway based website called Galway City Pub Guide  which gives great reviews and tips including video & photos from pubs in galway. For a listing of pubs, bars and events in Galway visit IrishTourist's pub page.

 

TRAD MUSIC SESSIONS

Many come to Galway to party as much as they can, but many a connoisseur will come to find the best Galway has to offer, in terms of good quality trad music. If this is what you're looking for, your best bet among all pubs is The Crane Bar on Sea Road: 2 floors, one bar on each of them - ground floor is open to anyone willing to play trad music (and there are usually a lot of musicians there), while the 1st floor is reserved for musicians 3 nights a week, some well known, some less. It is well worth to cross the bridge and walk the extra 5 minutes to spend an unforgettable evening there. Second and third: Taaffes, on Shop Street, and Tigh Chóilí, almost facing each other in the pub district, are good trad pubs too, just check inside, next to the door, if musicians are there or not, and if the style suits you (Taaffes 6 PM sessions sometimes do not materialize)

Cookes Thatch Pub which is one of only two Thatch Pubs left in the City and dates from the 1600's has Trad music sessions on Wednesday and Sunday nights which generally consist of 5 or more musicians.

Off the beaten track, but well worth the short walk, is the Thursday night music session at the Western Bar, just up from  Eyre Square. This is one you won't find in the tourist books, but in the last year or two has become one of the liveliest city jams. Sessions, despite what is advertised in the windows, usually begin at 10PM (used to be 9:30) :

Western Hotel

The best bar scene is small country pubs. Here you get a taste of old Ireland. Galway city pubs are great too, but you will still find traditional ireland, despite the huge changes this country has gone through.

 LATE BARS AND NIGHTCLUBS

Galway has a young population and twentysomething visitors will see that the city will not be found wanting for lively nightspots. The Front Door, on the corner of High St and Cross St is a very popular establishment with the young working crowd who fill the place to capacity Thursdays thru Sundays, the pub stays open til 2am these nights. Other popular choices include Kellys(formerly the Living Room) on Bridge St, The King's Head at the junction of Shop, Mainguard and High Streets, The Quays, which has a great club over it for live music (The Quays Live) on Quay St, and The Skeff on Eyre Square.

As the city's nightlife thrives on it's student population during midweek, Sunday - Thursday nights are dominated by a very young age group of drinkers, and things can get slightly boisterous as the night progresses! At the weekends the students are largely replaced by locals, and parties of revellers from all around the country (and further afield) also descend on the city. Popular nightclubs include Central Park (commonly referred to as CP's) on Abbeygate St, Halo, which is right beside CP's, Carbon on Eglinton St and  Karma just off Williamsgate St opposite Holland's Newsagents.Also don't forget Coyotes late bar and club which is on Forester St just off Eyre Square, which is open Wednesdayv to Sunday and Admisson is free!  Doors are usually 11pm on nightclubs in Galway and closing is at 2.30am, admission can cost between 5 and 12 euro depending on the venue and what night of the week it is, though there are usually a host of club reps around Shop street giving out stamps for free or reduced admission.

Galway has its own latin quarter made up of medivial streets and this is where the crowds usually head at the weekend. One such bar is Busker Brownes and it was a former convent in the 1600's. It is very impressive and serves breakfast, lunch and dinner as well as being one of the busier night spots. There is usuall a live band every night. We saw the Black Magic Big band - an 18 piece jazz band that perform every Monday for free.