As a follow on to our article Historical Pubs in Galway City PART 1, here are the next 5 historical galway pubs.
Also take a look at Historical Pubs in Galway City PART 1
23 Forster Street, Galway City
Murty Rabbitt’s bar was founded in 1872 – it ties in with a bit of America’s history too as it is claimed the pub was purchased with money from the San Francisco Gold Rush.
Cormac O’Coineen came back from the States, his pockets laden down with money. His first venture was to open a mill – not much luck there – as it burnt down. Next he turned to a combined bar and grocery store, and this proved so successful he was laughing all the way to the bank.
In 2007 Val Hanley took over the running of the pub as the Rabbitts left the business.
Today Rabbitts clientele includes business people as well as Galway’s older generation. Bar food is served during the day and live music featuring folk and traditional Irish is on offer from Friday to Sunday.
Note: Coineen means rabbit in the Irish language.
17 Cross Street, Galway
Tigh Neachtain’s is a family run pub with a prime spot in medieval Galway city. With 100 years in the trade, I think they know how to pull a good pint, and no trip to Galway would be complete without checking it out.
Richard Martin (known as Humanity Dick), a famous politician and animal rights activist, lived in this building when it was just an old ordinary townhouse.
The Black and Tans took offence to the name of the pub written in Irish, and during the War of Independence (1919 to 1921) it was targeted my machine gunfire.
Today regular music sessions take place here which vary from traditional Irish to jazz. The pub has a great variety in clientele which includes tourists, actors, buskers, business people and of course the locals.
De Dannan played here in 1993.
The Kings Head
15 High Street, Galway
This pub definitely has a tale or two to tell!
Archaeological evidence indicates that there was a building on this site as far back as the 13th century.
15 High Street was actually given to Gunning (a Galway soldier), as a reward for supposedly executing King Charles 1 (3rd of January 1649).
Since then the building has been a gun makers shop as well as a grocers and spirit shop.
Things to look out for: a 1612 fireplace, 2 medieval fireplaces, 4 original cut stone windows, medieval walls of Banks Castle and a 400 year old Tripartite window.
Food is served here daily and there’s a variety of entertainment on offer. The Kings Head is most definitely the place to be for big sporting events – the atmosphere is nothing short of electric when there’s a match on!
O’Connor’s Famous Pub
Salthill, Galway city
This is more of a tourist attraction than anything else. Step back in time – to what year – I don’t know – but the pub has a wide array of items suspended from every orifice which don’t really give you a clue as to the exact year you are in!
Look out for old lamps hanging very low from the ceiling, and no you haven’t had too much to drink, that is a fairly life size model of the man himself, John Wayne!
Customers in search of a bit of nostalgia will be in heaven here. Also included are farm implements, old crockery, black and white photos, and a set of weighing scales thrown in for good measure!
Obviously, tourists just love this and locals enjoy the challenge of ducking those low flying lamps.
There’s live music most nights with the regular occurrence of the customary sing song as well.
The Galway Arms
65 Dominic Street, Galway
Historical gem: take a look inside and you will come across an original handcrafted stone coat of arms of Galway city. It is one of four left in the city – so be sure and have a good look.
Over the past 100 years there has been a pub on this site. But back in 2000 a new building was erected because the old one was beyond repair. During building works evidence of a 16th century fort was uncovered.
Also in the bar itself there are a number of police badges from all over the world.
Accommodation is available upstairs which takes in some fine views of the Corrib. Food is served daily. Clientele vary from Gardai to language students to tourists to locals.
This is just a quick guide to Galway’s historical pubs. Certainly to visit to Galway city would be complete with sussing one or two of them out.
Don’t forget if you’re looking for somewhere to stay in Galway, make sure you check out our Galway city hotels page.
As always if you’ve any comments or questions we’d love to hear from you. Feel free to drop us a line in the comment box below.