Book Shelf - Default Image

Galway – Winter Wonderland

Where to begin, basically a two day catch-up here. I woke up Friday to a foggy and colder Galway. Considering I barely escaped Dublin, all I could think was my Saturday ferry to Inis Mór might be in danger, but what can you do?!

I went to find the departure point for Saturday because there’s nothing fun about being lost with a 40lb pack on your back plus whatever my camera stuff weighs. It was weighed for the plane in Nicaragua, but I’ve conveniently forgotten. Oh and I have a bag of food too!

Anyway found the spot and in the process found the more commercial side of the harbour. Quite fun. Massive ships in big chunks of ice! Rest assured, there are photos!

Then a partial rewalk of the day before because now I wanted fog photos. And did I get em! By evening, it was pea soup, but I’m jumping ahead.

Before I talk about my night roam in the fog, I have to give a small shout out to a little Mexican restaurant called La Salsa on Mary Street in Galway. One thing I always miss over here is Mexican food. I’ve tried it several times in the UK (with mixed results). This was the first time I saw one in Ireland. I have to say the menu was limited and included a section of burgers and fries titled “Gringo Food”. However, my nachos were excellent and there was an American couple in front of me who got yummy looking quesadillas. The lady who does it all was busy when I left but I did stop her just long enough to tell her that I never expected to see a Mexican restaurant in Ireland but she did it well. Would love to know where an Irish lady learns to cook Mexican! oh and it was a proper hole in the wall. Downstairs is just big enough for her kitchen and counter. She takes your order and sends you upstairs to a pretty realistically decorated Mexican dining room and then yells up the stairs when it’s ready. Yes, you wait on yourself, but it’s worth it. I may go back as I figure on a few more days there after Inis Mór.

Anyway, after lunch I chilled in the hostel awhile and then grabbed a light dinner before taking off for some, I think, atmospheric pea soup and city lights fog. It was really amazing how little you could see. The dome on too of the cathedral simply was invisible. Still it was fun. After that a little live music withanother hosteler who I left behind with apologies as I had to get up on time today.

Did really well today. Up and at em even if not chipper about it. Got to the pickup spot. My ferry ticket was purchased through the hostel, but I had to get a bus ticket to the pier in a wee village which is the departure point for Inis Mór. The lady behind the counter said “student ticket?”. Nooo! I didn’t think much about it but she told me the hostel charged me a student fare for the ferry! Oops! I’m flattered, and I saved money!!

On the bus here had a lively conversation with a local to Galway who frequently comes to the island. We were talking about the weather. What I’ve failed to mention is that all of Galway is white today! Not snow (although predicted), no last nights thick fog was freezing fog! I really wish I’d gotten photos of it but she thought it would last. She has a chid and grandchild in California. She was going to email them photos when she’s back. She said she’d lived in Galway 10 years and only seen the like of this once before.f course the news said overall, Ireland hasn’t had a winter like this since 1963. That one lasted six weeks, so I may not see much different. Hopefully they figure out how to cope soon. News also reported buses down in Dublin and airport was, at least this morning closed. No matter how long I try to avoid Dublin, I have to go back to get to Paris, and from there home. Nothing to do far it now, though. Worrying gets nothing but worried.

Anyway, made it to Inis Mór. It’s gorgeous, tiny. Just what I expected. Hostel seems nice and tonight a room to myself. I gather not many here. The guy at the desk said would likely be just me in this room. I know there are at least a couple (who checked in front of me) and Ive heard the voices of a couple of women two rooms down when coming in.

Not to let the day get lost, I walked over to one of two Celtic forts on the island. The nearer one is less impressive (apparently), but mostvof the hour walk to it was without benefit of road. The near fort is called the “Black Fort” – just don’t ask me why. It was VERY hard to find, even with the map handed to me coming off the boat. No road names on the map or streets and all the streets are not on the map. So it did boil down to finding the road that veered the same way as the map! After several turns, came to a sign that pointed and said “Black Fort”. Better late than never I suppose. No turns after that but the gravel path just dies into pastures. Nit one but a ton of tiny pastures with dry stacked rock fences. So over the pasture walls and onto the coast I’d about given up but finally spotted it. Over several more walls until I was at the cliff fort. Yes, CLIFF fort. A wonderfully defensible spot but I hate heights. Not in a paralysing way, but I’m not going near a cliff edge. Wil E Coyote may have come back from his falls. I won’t. So I walked around the outside of those 4,000 year old walls and marveled and took photos and left.

Halfway back, I saw the couple from in front of me at the hostel. They were in the distance – hugging the cliff side as they walked. I waved and kep going on my inland path. I was a mite jealous when I saw them walk on the cliff ledge into the fort, but they obviously have better luck than I do. Well, I never saw them come back either! LOL

Anyway, quiet walk back and I think I’m in for the night. It started to snow just as I got here! Really, this stuff is following me! The lady on the boat mentioned traditional live music at a pub a good walk from here but a simple meal in the one attached to the hostel sounds splendid! No more cold for moi! Today anyway!


  1. Galway the third largest and the fastest-growing city in Ireland and the only city in the province of Connacht. It is located on the west coast of Ireland. In Irish, Galway is also called Cathair na Gaillimhe (City of Galway).

    1. I never walked anywhere to here it on Inis Mor. It was windy and cold (and wet most of the time)…. brrr… A walk across the street wasn't inviting never mind some country lane with no street lights in the dark.

      Ironically, the one night I went out for music in Galway, it was all rock music. =D

Leave a Comment:

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *