The lovely little village of Oranmore In Galway is a fine base for an adventure.
One of the great things about Ireland is that there are so many little magical places waiting to be discovered and Oranmore is no exception.
This little town on the outskirts of Galway City might be easy to miss on a map but with so much rich history and culture, is easy to see why it’s not worth missing.
In the guide below, you’ll discover everything from things to do in Oranmore to where to eat, sleep and grab a post adventure pint.
About Oranmore in Galway
Oranmore has a population of 4,990 people and can be found 9Km east of Galway City on the edge of Oranmore Bay (an inlet of Galway Bay).
One of the oldest buildings in the town is the ruins of a medieval Roman Catholic church dating back to the 13th century.
Oranmore, similar to nearby Salthill, is a fine base for exploring Galway – especially for those of you that fancy dodging the city and experiencing a lively country town.
Things to do in Oranmore in Galway and nearby
One of the beauties of basing yourself in Oranmore is that it’s a stone’s throw from many of the best things to do in Galway.
Below, you’ll discover both things to do in Oranmore and places to visit a reasonable driving distance away.
1. Oranmore Castle
Situated on the stunning shores of Galway Bay, Oranmore Castle is one of the often-missed castles near Galway City.
It was built sometime between the 13th and 15th centuries, left abandoned in 1853 before bought by Lady Leslie in 1945 and whose granddaughter Leonie currently resides with her husband.
The enchanting castle was once featured on “Scariest Places on Earth” as it’s said to be haunted. The castle is a creative hub often used for hosting unique cultural events for locals and visitors to enjoy.
Opening times can vary so it’s worth contacting the properly directly before making an arrangement to visit.
2. Rinville Park
If you’re in search of walks in Galway, grab a coffee and head for a stroll around Rinville Park (the picture above doesn’t do it any justice).
Located only 5 minutes from Oranmore in Galway, Rinville Park is a paradise of natural walks, magical woodlands and open farmland to get lost in
The park was developed around an ancient castle and a fine estate demesne that dates as far back as the 16th century.
Head to Rinville Point and Saleen Point for outstanding views of Galway Bay, Galway City and the Burren in County Clare. You will also bump into a few curious critters native to the area such as otters and grey herons.
3. The Hooker Brewery
Move over Guinness, here comes Galway Hookers. This Artisan Brewery is dedicated to producing high quality, naturally brewed and preservative free beer.
Although this is one of the lesser-known Irish beers, it has won numerous awards for its flavor profile!
It’s also Galway’s third oldest independent brewery and one of the co-founders holds a Masters in Brewing and Distilling so they know what they are doing.
The beer was named after the infamous sailing boats often used to transport goods and livestock around the wild North Atlantic Ocean.
4. Oranmore Slí Na Slainte Walking Route
If you’re in search of walks in Oranmore in Galway, the town’s Slí na Sláinte walking route is well worth a ramble along.
Created by the Irish Heart Foundation to encourage locals to take a more active approach to their health, the walking route is a fun way to get fitter while also enjoying nature at your own pace.
Slí na Sláinte translates to ‘path to health’ and there are several brightly coloured signposts located at ever 1km interval to keep you on the right path.
The walking route begins in Oranmore village just outside of the Church of the immaculate Conception and takes you on a journey where you can spot a few historical buildings such as late 18th century ‘Roseville Cottage’ and a traditional cottage from the 1800s.
5. Take a spin into Galway City
To reach Galway City from Oranmore is only a 15 minute drive or a 2 hour walk if you fancy it. Galway is a vibrant city with so much to see and do.
On the lively cobblestone streets of Latin Quarter, you will find buskers, colourful shopfronts and many a mighty pub.
For a bit of shopping or if you need a caffeine fix then head down Quay street, known for its colourful storefronts.
6. Or head for a walk or swim in Salthill
A 16 min drive from Oranmore and only 3 mins from Galway City Centre, Salthill is a quaint seaside resort catering to just about anyone.
Salthill is really great for kids; there are amusements, Leisure Land, crazy golf and an aquarium, perfect for an action-packed day.
Along the Salthill promenade is a traditional walk known as ‘kicking the wall’ with the idea that once you reach the end of the promenade, there is a wall you are supposed to kick for good luck.
7. Dunguaire Castle
The castle is sat on an outcrop surrounded by water except for only one side. It’s said the castle date back as 1520 and was restored in the 1920s by Oliver St John Gogarty, who had literary legends such as W.B Yeats and George Bernard Shaw as guests.
During the summer, the castle has a special banquet, a medieval-style event with live music and entertainment usually in the form of spoken poetry.
If you’ve just spent a day ticking-off some of the best things to do in Oranmore in Galway, the chances are you’ll have worked up an appetite.
If so, you’re in luck – there’s plenty of great restaurants in Oranmore where you’ll grab a fine feed, regardless of budget!
1. Armorica Restaurant
Amorica combines traditional Irish food with French techniques to prove a dining experience like no other. The menu offers exquisite high-quality meals with fresh ingredients locally sourced. Every dish has a unique twist to it, if you never tried fusion cuisine before then you are in for a treat.
2. Keanes Oranmore
Nestled in the heart of Oranmore, Keanes is a traditional Irish gastro-pub known as a great spot for good feed. All produce is sourced locally to ensure the finest lunches and evening meals. Keanes also has regular music in the bar, perfect for a bit of craic in the evening.
If you are looking a bit of authentic Italian cuisine then you are in luck because Basilico has got it covered. The Head Chef is an expert in Italian cuisine, especially since he is also Italian. All produce is locally sourced so you can expect high-quality meals combined with reasonable prices.
4. Da Enzo Ristorante Italiano
Located in the town centre, this traditional Italian restaurant focuses on home cooked Italian traditions providing comfort food that will really hit the spot. The extensive menu has all the classics such as pasta, pizza, lasagne and coffee and tiramisu for after, so there is something for even the most fuzzy eater.
5. Oran Tandoori
This Indian restaurant opened back in November 2009 and it’s been going from strength to strength ever since. A local favourite, the restaurant has a huge menu that includes dishes from different Indian regions. Don’t worry if you can low spice tolerance, they can tailor a dish to suit your tastes.
6. Banditos Galway
What happens if you combine locally sourced ingredients with Mexican cuisine? You get Banditos. Fish tacos and refried beans are particularly great, perfect with a platter with family or friends. You have all the Mexican cuisine classics on the menu, the only issue is figuring out what to get.
Oranamore is, in our opinion, home to some of the best bars in Galway, many of which could go toe-to-toe with Galway City’s heavyweights.
For those of you visiting that fancy kicking-back with a post-adventure pint or 3, you’ll find some of the finest pubs in Oranmore in Galway below.
1. The Thatch / McDonaghs
You can’t get more of a traditional Irish pub than The Thatch. This little pub has a thatched roof (hence the name) and is full of characters and good craic. It feels like you are in someone’s home when you enter and you will likely leave after making a few friends for life.
2. The Porterhouse
This cool pub has an Americana vibe combined with a homely atmosphere. As side from sampling the craft beers on tap, there is a huge selection of food to order if you get peckish and there is always live trad music on Friday and Sunday nights.
3. Glynn’s Bar
This traditional Irish pub is spacious, full of atmosphere and there is an extensive outdoors area, where the real socialising begins. It has been open for over 100 years so there is a lot of history with the bar as well as amazing stories. On weekends, you can expect live music too!
4. The Old Brewery
If you are looking just a good feed of pints or sip on some wine then head to the Old Brewery. This sports and music bar is usually busy so lots of craic to be had. When there is not live music, you can enjoy watching gaelic on the big screen TV.
Hotels in Oranmore
Oranmore might be a small village but that doesn’t mean you’ll struggle to find a place to stay. There is a nice selection of hotels in Oranmore, from mid-range to luxury.
Whether you are with your significant other or with family or even just with friends, there is something for everyone in Oranmore.
1. Oranmore Lodge Hotel
This 4-star family-run hotel is located in Oranmore and surrounded by a stunning landscape. The hotel has been open for over 150 years and guests can enjoy the exclusive leisure and health facilities which includes a swimming pool, Jacuzzi and sauna. The hotel offers 67 bedrooms, each one elegant, spacious and beautifully decorated.
2. Maldron Hotel Oranmore Galway
Located in Oranmore, the Maldron Hotel has 113 stylish rooms, a full leisure centre (with swimming pool) and grill restaurant perfect for quality dining.
The hotel caters exceptionally well to families, often running family activities throughout the week and there are a few family facilities available too.
3. Coach House Hotel
Located on a bustling town road and a 6 minute walk from Oranmore Castle, the Coach House Hotel offers stylish, contemporary rooms that all come with free Wi-Fi, flat-screen TVs and en suite bathrooms.
The hotel also comes with an cosy little bar, superb for spending the evening and reflecting on the day.
FAQs about visiting Oranmore in Galway
We’ve had a lot of questions over the years asking about everything from things to do in Oranmore to where to stay for a night or two.
In the section below, we’ve popped in the most FAQs that we’ve received. If you have a question that we haven’t tackled, ask away in the comments section below.
What are the best things to do in Oranmore (and nearby)?
- Oranmore Castle
- Rinville Park
- The Hooker Brewery
- Or head for a walk or swim in Salthill
- Dunguaire Castle
Where are the best places to stay in Oranmore?
- Oranmore Lodge Hotel
- Maldron Hotel Oranmore
- Coach House Hotel
What are the best restaurants in Oranmore?
- Armorica Restaurant
- Keanes Oranmore
- Da Enzo Ristorante Italiano
Oranmore Galway: What information have we missed?
I’m sure that we’ve unintentionally missed out on including some useful information about visiting Oranmore in Galway in the guide above.
If you have something to recommend, regardless of whether it’s things to do in Oranmore or where to grab a great bite to eat, we’d love to hear from you in the guide below!