Galway Festivals: Galway’s Events and Festival Calendar 2024
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Galway Festivals: Galway’s Events and Festival Calendar 2024

Answering the age old question of what’s on in Galway? Here is This is Galway’s ultimate events and festival calendar, featuring both internationally recognised festivals and smaller scale local celebrations. Discover what’s happening in Galway right here..

Throughout the year, Galway hosts a colourful variety of festivals and both city and county come alive with diverse and exciting festival programmes, buzzing events, workshops and so much more. 2024 is no exception and each season’s festival lineup includes loads of unique acts and performances. This year be a part of all the action and save these upcoming dates;

If you want to know more about all the day-to-day events taking place in Galway, please hit the link HERE for access to Galway's ever-evolving events lineup.

Galway’s Summer Festivals (Festivals in May, June & July)


above: photo courtesy of GIAF, of The Pulse 2023

Blas na Bealtaine / A Taste of Galway

1st - 31st May / website link here / Location: Galway City + County
Blas na Bealtaine is a month-long festival that celebrates people and food from across the globe but right here in the west. Through festivals, events, and collaborations, A Taste of Galway celebrates the diversity, creativity, and passion that define Galway's food culture. From traditional feasts to innovative wine explorations, there is something for every palate and every curiosity.

Cellissimo

18th - 26th May / website link here / Location: Town Hall Theatre
Presented by Music for Galway, Cellissimo will strike a chord with Irish and international music audiences, as many of the world’s most acclaimed classical and contemporary composers, conductors, orchestras, artists, musicians, and performers gather at the edge of Europe to celebrate the power and beauty of the cello.

Headfest

30th May - 3rd June / website link here / Location: Headford
Headfest is an annual festival held in Headford, North Galway, celebrating music, sports, arts, and community spirit. Since its inception in 2017, Headfest has become a highlight on the local calendar, offering a diverse range of events for people of all ages.

Kinvara Plein Air

31st May - 3rd June / website link here / Location: South Galway towns
A festival of outdoor painting in the picturesque village of Kinvara and surrounding areas of the Burren and South County Galway.

Éalú Le Grá

31st May - 3rd June / website link here / Location: Cregg Castle
A camping, music and arts festival experience in the west of Ireland celebrating art, music, food, creativity, passion and the undulating nature of this wonderful life.

Galway Early Music Festival 2024 – Edges of Empires

31st May - 9th June / website link here / Location: St Nicholas' Collegiate Church
Galway’s best loved boutique festival, the Galway Early Music Festival explores how several long-lasting and wide-ranging empires and dynasties gave rise to some of the most stunning music across nearly six centuries of history. This year they are exploring the theme of 'Edges of Empires.' The goal of this festival is to bring alive the music and dance of the 12th to 17th centuries in the context of Galway’s medieval heritage through concerts given by international and national performers

Salthill Fives

1st + 2nd June / website link here / Location: Salthill Park  
Salthill Devon’s popular five-a-side tournament returns this summer for their biggest tournament yet. As usual alongside the phenomenal sports, this is a fantastic family day out as there will be loads of food and drink trucks lining the area to keep spectators fueled and entertained.

Galway Folk Festival

5th - 9th June / website link here / Location: Monroe’s, Galway’s Westend
The Galway Folk Festival is a vibrant celebration of folk music, uniting artists, musicians, and the community to honour the rich heritage of the genre. Join a line-up of showcasing talent from over 50 established names and emerging artists as they embrace both traditional and contemporary folk music from around the world.

Clifden Summer Music Festival

14th - 16th June / website link here / Location: Clifden Showgrounds
A three day music festival featuring a wealth of fantastic musical acts, including The Tumbling Paddies, All Folk’d Up Mike Denver and more!

Corrandulla Agricultural Show

23rd June / website link here / Location: Corrandulla
A  family fun day out with dog and cattle shows, horse-jumping competitions, home produce and baking competitions, food and market stalls, children’s entertainment, a  fun fair, artist stalls and more.

Galway Uke Festival

21st - 23rd June / website link here / Location: Latin Quarter
Taking place in Galway city’s famous Latin Quarter, the Galway Ukulele Festival hosts an annual three days jam-packed with concerts, workshops, street performances, competitions, and more—all set to the infectious sounds of the ukulele.

Galway Skate Fest

28th June - 1st July / website link here / Location: Galway City
The Galway Skate Festival is an annual celebration of all things skateboarding. During this year's festival there will be all loads of events for all attendees including free skate lessons, skate jams, pub quizzes, giveaways, competitions and more!

Galway Film Fleadh

9th - 14th July / website link here / Location: Galway City
A week-long international film festival taking place every July on the western edge of Europe in Galway, the Galway Film Fleadh brings together a combination of premieres, Irish shorts, documentaries and more to the screen, this festival is perfect for all film enthusiasts and novices alike.

Galway International Arts Festival

15th - 28th July / website link here / Location: Galway City
The highlight of the summer season, from big names to big spectacles,  Galway International Arts Festival celebrates the arts in all its many forms. Celebrating on a larger scale than ever before across theatre, music, circus, dance, visual arts, comedy, street spectacle and talks over 14 exciting days and nights, its 2024 programme is its largest and most ambitious programme to date!

South Galway Bay Music Festival

26th - 28th July / website link here / Location: Ballinderreen GAA Club
A three night festival of all ages, celebrating music and dance. Headline acts for 2024 include:- The Whistlin’ Donkeys, The Porter Bellys, Johnny Brady, Jack Keogh, Sum Craic, Derek Ryan, Olivia Douglas & Gavin Gribben.

Galway Races

29th July - 4th August / website link here / Location: Ballybrit Racecourse
An unmissable seven day festival of horse-racing, entertainment, fashion and hospitality in the heart of Galway. The historic Galway Plate Day takes place on Wednesday followed by the world renowned Ladies Day which combines the very best in racing and fashion for the pinnacle of the summer racing calendar. The festival’s final day features the hugely popular Mad Hatter’s Competition – it’s fun for the whole family with fantastic prizes on offer.

Fleadh na gCuach

Dates for 2025 undetermined / website link here / Location: Kinvara
A cherished traditional music and community-based arts festival held in Kinvara. Known for its vibrant ambiance and exceptional talent, the festival has garnered a stellar reputation as a showcase for traditional music, attracting musicians from across Ireland and beyond. This eagerly anticipated event has become a treasured tradition, bringing together locals and visitors to revel in music, culture, and community.

Inishbofin Arts Festival

Dates for 2025 undetermined / website link here / Location: Inishbofin Island
A celebration of creativity and culture on an Irish isle. At the Inishbofin Arts Festival visitors can experience a tapestry of creativity with visual arts, mesmerising music, captivating theatre performances, literary delights, amusing comedy and much more.

Galway Theatre Festival

Dates for 2025 undetermined / website link here / Location: Galway City
Galway Theatre Festival features 9 days of exciting theatre, spectacle and storytelling- showcasing the vibrant performance culture of Ireland’s festival city. The Festival provides a platform for both national artists and artists based in the West of Ireland, bringing together a high-quality programme that showcases the best and newest talents in artistic performance.

An Tóstal

Dates for 2025 undetermined / website link here / Location: Salthill
A Weekend of Maritime Adventure. During An Tóstal, traditional Galway Hookers will grace the waves along Salthill Promenade, showcasing the rich seafaring heritage of Galway. The following day, there will be exciting currach rowing races, guaranteed to keep you on the edge of your seat! Onshore, families can dive into a range of activities, including a fun-filled day organised by Galway City Council, Tiny Traders Village, and exhilarating FlyingHigh Fitness sessions.

Galway Festivals on during Autumn (Festivals in August, September & October)

macnas
above: photo by Ciarán MacChoncarraige of Macnas 2018

Galway Pride Week

10th - 18th August / website link here / Location: Galway City 
Run by Galway Community Pride, this annual festival invites people to openly and safely share their identities, share their stories and celebrate who they are. This festival features over 30 events taking place throughout the week including evenings of information and awareness, arts, performances and music nights.

National Heritage Week

17th - 25th August / website link here / Location: Galway City + County
The theme for this year’s heritage week is ‘Connection, Routes, and Networks’ and invites you to explore the ways we are connected to each other through physical or cultural connections.

Connemara Pony Show

20th - 23rd August / website link here / Location: Clifden Showgrounds
A four day festival filled with captivating events, showcasing the Connemara Pony breed’s exceptional talent, and paying homage to its remarkable history.

Féile Cheoil Larry Reynolds

5th - 8th September / website link here / Location: Ballinasloe
A weekend which was established to commemorate the life of Larry Reynolds but also to promote the East Galway Style of Music and to encourage and develop Irish Music, Heritage and Culture in the region. It promises to be a weekend of “Cheoil, Craic, Cultúr agus Spraoi”…

Shorelines Arts Festival

12th - 15th September / website link here / Location: Portumna
A celebration of art and sculpture from local artists and guest artists feature a vintage machinery display, art talks and loads of other art events. Shorelines Arts Festival will be bringing theatre, music, film, visual arts, and more to lakeside Portumna. The festival will run this September with the full action-packed programme.

Galway Culture Night

20th September / website link here / Location: County-wide
Now in its 19th year, this annual celebration provides free access to museums, galleries, theatres and public buildings offering tours, exhibitions, readings, performances, films, drama, poetry, music, dance, workshops and lectures, all free of charge!

Clifden Arts Festival

19th - 29th September / website link here / Location: Clifden
Clifden Community Arts Festival is the longest-running community arts festival in Ireland and promises to have something to excite everyone in their 2024 programme. Audiences can expect a very high quality artistic programme with superb literary, musical and visual art content which again will have the community arts of Clifden and the surrounding hinterland as a central focus with creative writing, music, theatre and film workshops and performances.

Galway International Oyster Festival

27th - 29th September / website link here / Location: Nimmo’s Pier, The Claddagh
The longest-running oyster festival in the world, Galway International Oyster Festival gives locals and visitors alike the chance to experience a wide variety of tantalising events. There will be loads of exciting events to choose from; seafood trails, oyster opening (shucking) championships, talks and tasting events in some of Galway’s best restaurants, along with family activities, live music, and cooking demonstrations.

Galway Cartoon Festival

4th - 9th October / website link here / Location: Galway City + County
The Galway Cartoon Festival is an international celebration of funny drawings, hosted in Ireland’s most sociable city. Along with the main exhibitions, the Cartoon Festival will feature live caricature sessions, a schools’ cartoon workshop and competition. The 2024 festival will run over 6 days and will showcase some of the most talented cartoonists from Ireland and abroad across many venues in Galway, as well as on Inis Óirr in the Aran Islands.

Baboró International Arts Festival for Children

11th - 20th October / website link here / Location: Galway City
Returning with an assembly of enthralling, hilarious and thought-provoking shows and exhibitions, brought to you by extraordinary artists and entertainers from Ireland and around the globe. Baboró is devoted to children and families and enables them to experience the transformative power of creative arts with an annual week-long schedule offering dance, music, visual arts, literature, creative workshops and loads more.

Food on the Edge

21st + 22nd October / website link here / Location: Galway City
Returning to Galway for its 2024 festival, Food on the Edge International is a two-day symposium that takes place annually in Ireland. It is for chefs & food enthusiasts all around the world who want to create a better global network. This year’s festival will include; talks, lunches, masterclasses, producer food village and a FOTE bookstore in association with Charlie Byrne’s Bookshop.

Galway Comedy Festival

22nd - 28th October / website link here / Location: Galway City
Galway becomes Ireland’s Comedy Capital this October once more, with the nation’s biggest comedy festival taking over the city’s pubs and theatres for seven nights of laughter, mischief & merriment. GCF24 is shaping up to be an absolute whopper, with many of your favourites returning to bring a full week of Carefully Curated Craic in Ireland’s favourite city.

Macnas Halloween Parade

2024 date tbc / website link here / Location: Galway City
The world class Macnas parade is returning to the streets of Galway this Halloween with another edition of their show-stopping parades. Macnas are world-renowned masters of storytelling and pioneers of imagination, so this year’s event is sure to spook and thrill all attending.

Discover what festivals to attend in Galway in Winter (Festivals in November, December & January)


above: photo of Galway Christmas Market 

TULCA

November Dates tbc / website link here / Location: Galway City + County
The 22nd edition of TULCA Festival of Visual Arts will embed itself in multiple venues and locations, accompanied by an extensive public programme and publication. Entitled The Salvage Agency, curator Michele Horrigan welcomes artistic proposals and artwork submissions that consider the agency and role of art in contemporary ecology and environmental study, and those that examine the underlying attitudes that have led to today’s critical and urgent impasse.

Galway Christmas Market

2024 dates tbc / website link here / Location: Eyre Square
Now in its 14th year, The Christmas Market will once again feature the highly popular 32m observation wheel, Après Ski Bar, Santa’s Express Train, a traditional Carousel and over 50 wooden chalets which line Eyre Square, offering scrumptious seasonal treats and a variety of crafts.

Galway Tattoo Show

Dates for 2025 - undetermined / website link here / Location: The Galmont Hotel
The Galway Tattoo Show is not only a celebration of all things tattoo, but will also feature entertainment, live music, a stunning art gallery, a free tattoo cinema, photo booth, market stalls and traders on show to keep you entertained.

Events and Festivals in Spring 2025 (Festivals in February, March & April)


above: photo courtesy of Cúirt International Festival of Literature 

Tonnta

31st January - 3rd February 2025 / website link here / Location: Galway City
Galway, Ireland’s festival city, and the newest festival; Tonnta – celebrates the Irish language and Galway as a bilingual city. Gaillimh le Gaeilge, which works to enhance the visibility and audibility of the Irish language in Gaillimh | Galway has planned the new festival in collaboration with Galway City Council, Fáilte Ireland, Plean Teanga Chathair na Gaillimhe and the Galway Culture Company.

Tedfest

6th - 9th March / website link here / Location: Inis Mór
An annual three-day celebration of the life of comedian Dermot Morgan and his 1990’s cult TV sitcom Father Ted. The festival involves themed events associated with the comedy series including fancy dress, five-aside football (nuns against priests), toilet duck comedy awards, buckaroo speed dating, Lovely Girls Contest and A Song For Europe.

Clifden Traditional Music Festival

Dates for 2025 - undetermined / website link here / Location: Clifden
A weekend of the very best of Irish music, song and dance with concerts, sessions, workshops and outdoor entertainment. As always at the Trad Fest, public events are free and everyone is invited to come along as Clifden once again plays host to some of the country’s finest traditional musicians, singers and dancers.

Cúirt International Festival of Literature

Dates for 2025 - undetermined / website link here / Location: Galway City
Cúirt International Festival of Literature is Ireland’s premier literary event which takes place in different locations throughout Galway city. Featuring an array of some of the most exciting Irish and international writers at work today, the 40th Cúirt International Festival of Literature will span over 50 events, the programme includes poetry, fiction, memoir, non-fiction, masterclasses and workshops, exhibitions, and family events.

Discover the day-to-day events taking place in Galway by hitting the link HERE for access to Galway's ever-evolving events lineup.

Feature photo courtesy of Fáilte Ireland.

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