Its beginning to look a lot like Christmas! And nowhere more so than in Galway city. Galway is usually one of the first cities to kick off the markets and this year the festive stalls opened on the 18th November. It’s also one of the only city markets in Ireland that stays open continuously up until Christmas. A lot of the other markets are closed Monday- Thursday. So if you have days off during the week- you know where to go!
Whenever I travel to Galway city I always park in Q-Park at the Eyre Square shopping centre. You can walk from the car park straight into the shopping center which is really handy and you are also right in the center of the city. Its €2.50 per hour here so it’s one of the cheaper options. My galavanting partner for the day was Emma and after we had a good nosy at the decorations in the shopping center, we made our way out to Eyre Square. The layout of this years market is a little different from last year in that most of the stalls are situated at the top of Eyre Square. We started down at the bottom of the square, opposite the Meyrick Hotel. The market stalls run the lenght of the square and you will find all sorts of crafts along here as well as Fudge, hot chocolate, nuts and mini Donuts! (The donuts are delish!) As you walk along here there is Christmas music being blasted out at you also so it really gets you in the festive mood. At the top of the square you will find Santa’s grotto for the kids. Up at this end of the square, you will find more food stalls such as The Charcoal grill (Love their food :)), cheesy chips with savage dips (Love that, but it was too early for chips), and steak burgers! You will find more stalls with Christmas decorations and arty farty stuff. I picked up a really cute Christmas bauble here for Ali for her Christmas tree.
For all of you beer lovers this is where you will find the Bier Keller (not too far away from Santa’s grotto- dump and run??) and although it was early in the day we found a few brave souls sampling the German beer, cider and mulled wine on offer here. Me and Emma decided that 12pm probably was a bit early so we decided to head across the road to the amusements.
This year there is a vintage carousel for the kids outside Supermacs, a helter skelter slide (also for the kids I presume) and a big wheel. We made our way around the crowd of people at the carousel and headed straight for the big wheel. Its €5 per person to take a spin on it and I must say it was well worth it. I was a bit nervous going up on it but it was very sturdy and the views were amazing! It was a pretty misty day in Galway but I reckon if you were up there at dark it would be pretty spectacular. We were up there for a good ten minutes so it was well worth the €5. We had spent a good hour and a half mooching around the markets and it’s a really nice way to spend the day- or just to take a break from the craziness of the shops. The markets are open up until the 22nd December. Monday to Wednesday they are opened from 12-8pm and Thursday to Sunday they are open from 10am to 10pm. Be sure to visit shop street also and experience the fantastic atmosphere that Galway has to offer (especially this time of year). I have attached a link to the website for you. There is plenty of accommodation in Galway if you decide to make a night of it. The Skeff, Hotel Meyrick, The Victoria and the Imperial Hotel are all situated right on the square. As always- Happy Galavanting! xxx