Just south of Galway, and on the northernmost edge of the Burren, Ballyvaughan is an adorable seaside harbor town. It’s reachable by bus or car very easily, and parking is not too difficult unless it is crowded. It’s popular most on Saturday, when there is a local farmer’s market, which is not to be missed if you can help it. The harbor is also really fantastic to explore, especially on a breezy, sunny summer morning. Your Ballyvaughan hostel is an excellent base location if you want to explore the magic of The Burren, since it is closest to many of the really cool attractions that The Burren has to offer. Aillwee Caves are nearby, although a tad pricey, and so are many castles and churches to explore. Check in at the tourist office and get a map of the area.
You can rent bikes in Ballyvaughan; if the weather is permitting, take advantage of this to explore some of the best places along the coastline. It can get a bit crowded sometimes, tourists from Galway often stop here, so get out of town during the day time and hit the beach (on the west coast) or go for a hike inland. If it’s warm and sunny (a rare sight in Ireland!) consider taking a surfing lesson and catching some waves, or just go for a relaxed swim. Many of the beaches open to the public are staffed with excellent and safe lifeguards, so make sure to follow the rules.
In town there are pubs (go to Monks for some wonderful Trad sessions during the summer) and a laundromat. Internet is also available as well. You have access to an ATM and a post office, but there aren’t any grocery shops in town, so if you’re coming from Galway, be sure to stock up on provisions unless you don’t mind eating out. If you do eat out, though, make sure to try some of the local food. It's great!
Hi, I'm Emily Schreiber,
the Hostelz.com local expert for Ballyvaughan hostels. Welcome.