A Travel Price Comparison for Ireland Galway vs. Dublin for Nightlife, Attractions, Families, and Couples

Should you visit Galway or Dublin?

Which is cheaper to visit? Which is more expensive for vacation?

Trying to figure out where to travel next? This travel comparison between Galway and Dublin can help. It includes a travel cost comparison in addition to other factors. For many travelers, the cost of a destination is a primary consideration when choosing where to go.

Galway

Galway is a friendly, cultural, and historical city. It's a large city, so you'll find plenty of things to do around town. And you can't forget about the shopping, museums, and nightlife.

Dublin

Dublin is a friendly, welcoming, and fun city. Since it's a large city, you'll find plenty of things to do. It's also known for nightlife, live music, and food.

Galway and Dublin: Pros and Cons

Pros
  • Popular museums and historical sights
  • Active nightlife
  • Family-friendly
  • Good for couples and romance
  • Good for backpackers and budget travelers
Pros
  • Popular museums and historical sights
  • Active nightlife
  • Good music scene
  • Scenic old town
  • Family-friendly
  • Good for couples and romance
  • Good for backpackers and budget travelers


Is there more to do in Galway or Dublin?

Tourists will generally find more to do in Dublin than Galway. It is bigger and it has more sights, attractions, and activities for travelers. Dublin is more touristy than Galway and is known for its friendly and social nightlife, its local pubs, and its role as the birthplace of Guinness. It is also well known for The Guinness Storehouse. Galway is famous for its many festivals, its traditional pubs, and its live Irish folk music.

How is Galway different from Dublin?

Which is Better for a Holiday?

Let's take a look at the differences and similarities between Dublin and Galway. Then, you can decide for yourself which place is better for your next trip.

Are the Museums and Historical Sights Better in Galway or Dublin?

Galway
Dublin

Dublin is notable for its sights and museums. Also, Galway is not as famous, but is still a good city to visit for its museums and history.

You'll find a good number of museums and monuments packed into Dublin. There are a number of museums around town including the National Museum of Ireland, the Little Museum of Dublin, and the National Gallery of Ireland.

Galway offers a variety of museums and landmarks to choose from. Popular landmarks and sights in town include Eyre Square, St. Nicholas' Church, the Galway Cathedral, and the Galway City Museum.


Is the Food Better in Galway or Dublin? Which Destination has the Best Restaurants?

Galway
Dublin

Dining out at restaurants in both Galway and Dublin can be an enjoyable experience.

Galway offers number of good local restaurants to choose from. There are local pubs and traditional restaurants offering authentic Irish dishes. Popular options include Irish Stew, Cockles and Mussels, and Galway Oysters.

Dublin has a delicious restaurant scene that relies on local flavors. Seafood has become popular around town, but you can also try traditional favorites like stew, pancakes, or coddle.

Is Galway or Dublin Better for Nightlife?

Galway
Dublin

Dublin is an unbeatable place for nightlife. Also, Galway is not as famous, but is still a good city to visit for nightlife and partying.

The nightlife in Dublin is well established with world renowned clubs and venues. Temple Bar is where you'll find the greatest concentration of pubs and nightlife. The city is among the friendliest and most welcoming, and this is seen even in the vibe around town at night.

Galway has a lively atmosphere and nightlife is popular here. The nightlife scene is among the best in Ireland. The city embraces the friendly Irish hospitality and there are laid back pubs and bars around town as well as a few trendy nightclubs.

Is Galway or Dublin Better for Music?

Galway
Dublin

Dublin is notable for live music. However, Galway is not a live music destination.

If you love music, you'll find something to enjoy in Dublin. The best places to hear live music around town are the back street pubs that feature local groups.

Galway is not a live music destination.


Is Galway or Dublin Better for its Old Town?

Galway
Dublin

Dublin is notable for its historic old town. However, Galway does not have a historic old town.

Dublin is an extremely popular place to visit the historic old town area. On the south side of the River Liffey are three different historic parts to the city. The Medieval Quarter is the oldest. To the east is Temple Bar, and further east is the Georgian Quarter.

Galway does not have a historic old town.

Is the Shopping Better in Galway or Dublin?

Galway
Dublin

Dublin is notable for shopping. Also, Galway is not as famous, but is still a good city to visit for its shopping opportunities.

Dublin is an extremely popular place for shoppers. Head to Grafton Street to see a number of brand name and local shops. It's a pedestrian street that is fun to wander around.

Shopping is a popular activity when visiting Galway. You'll find shopping both in the city center as well as at suburban shopping malls. For some of the best shopping head to The Latin Quarter, The Westend or the outdoor market which is found in Church lane by St Nicholas' Church.

Is Galway or Dublin Better for Families?

Galway
Dublin

Dublin is notable for its family-friendly activities. Also, Galway is not as famous, but is still a good city to visit for its kid-friendly activities.

Dublin is a very family-friendly place to visit. Explore the waterways with the viking splash, learn about the vikings at the museum Dublina, or visit any of the other kid-friendly museums around town, or see a show at The Gaiety.

Galway is a family-friendly city. Kids will enjoy the National Aquarium Galway or simply wandering around the Latin Quarter. About 15 minutes outside of the city is the Wildlands Adventure Park which has ziplines, ropes courses, and other adrenaline filled activities. Brigit's Garden is another fun place to let kids stretch their legs.


Is Galway or Dublin Better for Couples?

Galway
Dublin

Dublin is notable for romance. Also, Galway is not as famous, but is still a good city to visit for its romantic activities.

Dublin is a very popular place to visit for couples. It's laid-back vibe and countless pubs make it a fun weekend getaway for couples.

Galway makes for a fun place to visit for a couple. There are nice restaurants, beautiful walks, and a few parks to explore. There are also several romantic places just outside of town that make for a great day trip.

Is Galway or Dublin Better for Backpackers and Budget Travelers?

Galway
Dublin

Both Galway and Dublin are high quality destinations for backpackers.

Backpackers come from all over to visit Galway. There are plenty of hostels in the area and it's easy to meet other travelers.

Many backpackers visit Dublin. There are a number of popular backpacker hostels around town. The pub scene is also popular with the young crowd.

Is Galway or Dublin Better for Students?

Galway
Dublin

Galway and Dublin are both nice destinations for students and younger travelers.

Galway is a good city to visit for students. The city has a solid student population with a number of activities and entertainment options.

Plenty of students visit Dublin. While student accommodation can be a bit expensive in town, the nightlife and social aspect of living in the city center makes it well worth it.


Is Galway or Dublin Better for Public Transit? Which Is Easier to Get Around Without a Car?

Galway
Dublin

Both Galway and Dublin offer nice public transit options.

Galway has a few public transit options. There are two bus companies in Galway, Bus Eireann and City Direct.

Dublin has some public transit options. There is a comprehensive bus system around town.

Is Galway or Dublin a more walkable city?

Galway
Dublin

Dublin is an unbeatable place for its walkability. Also, Galway is not as famous, but is still a good city to visit for its high level of walkability.

It is easy to get around Dublin on foot. Because it is so compact and flat, it is easy to explore the city center on foot.

Galway is a very walkable city. If you stay in central Galway, the area is generally compact and walkable.

For even more information, also check out Is Galway Worth Visiting? and Is Dublin Worth Visiting?.

Should I spend more time in Dublin or Galway?

How long in Galway or Dublin?

In either Galway or Dublin, you'll find plenty of activities to fill your time. Most visitors tend to spend more time in Dublin than Galway because of the overall number of sights and activities. Usually, 2-3 days is a good amount of time for Galway, and 2-5 days is enough time in Dublin.

Families should spend more time in Dublin than Galway. Because of the many family-friendly attractions and fun things to do for kids in Dublin, it's a great place to visit with the whole family.

Couples should spend more time in Dublin than Galway. You'll find plenty of romantic sights and fun activities in Dublin that are perfect for a weekend getaway or a longer couple's trip.

Backpackers and budget travelers should spend more time in Dublin than Galway if your budget allows for it. With a larger number of budget-friendly sights, good nightlife, and active things to do, anyone traveling on a budget would have a good time in Dublin.


  • How many days in Galway or Dublin? Ideal Length of Stay
    Galway 2-3 
    Dublin 2-5

One day in Galway or Dublin?

Many travelers enjoy the museums and nightlife when visiting the destination of Galway. But since there are so many activities, you'll likely want to spend more than one day exploring.

Many travelers enjoy the food and shopping when visiting the destination of Dublin. The old town is one of the main draws for visitors. But since there are so many activities, you'll likely want to spend more than one day exploring.


A weekend in Galway or Dublin?

Galway is a great place to explore. It is common to spend a weekend here. With all of its activities, you can easily fill a weekend here. Your budget might influence how long you stay.

Dublin is a great place to explore. It is common to spend a weekend here. Don't miss the nightlife, as that's what most people do. With all of its activities, you can easily fill a weekend here. Your budget might influence how long you stay.

Five days in Galway or Dublin?

It's hard to know how much time to spend in Galway. Five days may feel like too much time unless you plan to do a lot of relaxing. It has many unique tourist attractions and fascinating things to do.

It's hard to know how much time to spend in Dublin. Don't miss the nightlife, as that's what most people do. For many, it makes a great getaway for five days. Make sure you visit the old town while you're here. With all of its activities, you can easily fill five days here. It has many unique tourist attractions and fascinating things to do.

A week in Galway or Dublin?

Travelers enjoy the shopping and museums when visiting the lively destination of Galway. This city offers a variety of activities to choose from. Most people find that one week is more than enough time to see everything.

Travelers enjoy the nightlife and live music when visiting the welcoming destination of Dublin. This city offers a variety of activities to choose from. Most visitors spend time around the old town while in the area. Most people find that one week is more than enough time to see everything.


For some great organized tour ideas, see The Best Budget Tours to Ireland, The Best Tours for Seniors to Ireland, The Best 3-Day Tours from Dublin, and The Best One-Week (7-Day) Tours from Dublin.


Which place is cheaper, Dublin or Galway?

These are the overall average travel costs for the two destinations.

The average daily cost (per person) in Galway is €131, while the average daily cost in Dublin is €143. These costs include accommodation (assuming double occupancy, so the traveler is sharing the room), food, transportation, and entertainment. While every person is different, these costs are an average of past travelers in each destination. What follows is a categorical breakdown of travel costs for Galway and Dublin in more detail.



Accommodation
  • Accommodation Hotel or hostel for one person
    Galway 70
    Dublin 68
  • Accommodation Typical double-occupancy room
    Galway 140
    Dublin 136
Compare Hotels in Galway and Dublin

Looking for a hotel in Galway or Dublin? Prices vary by location, date, season, and the level of luxury. See below for options and compare which is best for your budget and travel style.

Hotels in Galway


Hotels in Dublin


Kayak helps you find the best prices for hotels, flights, and rental cars for destinations around the world. Compare prices for multiple destinations when planning your next trip.


Our Analysis
We've analyzed the average and typical hotel prices based on guest reviews, star ratings, and hotel amenities here: Galway Hotel Prices and Dublin Hotel Prices.

Local Transportation
  • Local Transportation Taxis, local buses, subway, etc.
    Galway 33
    Dublin 19

Hired Cars and Shuttles in Galway

Some specific examples of transportation prices in Galway:

  • From 1-Way Private Transfer to Cork City: $571
  • From 1-Way Private Transfer to Dublin Airport: $679
  • Galway Private Driver: Personalized Tours & Transfers: $761
  • Galway Private Transfer from Galway Airport to City centre: $92
  • Galway Private Transfer from central Galway to Galway Airport: $92
  • Galway to Limerick | Private Transfer and Car Service: $299
  • Galway to Shannon Airport | Private Transfer & Car Service: $299
  • One-Way Private Transfer to Killarney: $679
  • Private Transfer between SHANNON & DOOLIN | Premium Vehicles: $249
  • Shannon Airport to Seamless Private Transfers: $261

Typical Local Transportation Prices in Dublin

Below are a few samples from actual travelers for transportation costs in Dublin:


  • Rental Car for a Day
    15

Hired Cars and Shuttles in Dublin

Some specific examples of transportation prices in Dublin:

  • One-Way Bus Transfer from/to Dublin Airport: $10
  • Belfast | Coach transfer from / to Dublin: $13
  • Airport Transfer and Hop-On Hop-Off Bus Ticket: $39
  • Private Transfer from Dun Laoghaire Cruise Port to Dublin City: $46
  • Private Transfer from Dublin Airport (DUB) to Dun Laoghaire Port: $46
  • Private Transfer from Dun Laoghaire Port to Dublin Airport (DUB): $46
  • Private Transfer from Dublin city to Dun Laoghaire Cruise Port: $46
  • Private Transfer from Dublin Airport (DUB) to Dublin City Center: $56
  • Private Dublin Departure Transfer - Hotel / Accommodation to Airport: $62
  • From Dublin Airport: One-Way Private Transfer to Dublin: $74
  • 4 to 8 People Private Transfer from Dublin Airport to City Centre: $77
  • Departure Private Transfer by Business Car from Dublin to Dublin airport DUB: $83

Is it cheaper to fly into Galway or Dublin?

Prices for flights to both Dublin and Galway change regularly based on dates and travel demand. We suggest you find the best prices for your next trip on Kayak, because you can compare the cost of flights across multiple airlines for your prefered dates.





Food
  • Food Meals for one day
    Galway 33
    Dublin 49
Typical Food Prices in Galway

Some typical examples of dining costs in Galway are as follows:


  • Fish & Chips Dinner
    8.12

Food Tours and Cooking Classes in Galway

Also, here are some specific examples of food and dining related activities in Galway.

  • Tour & Taste Galway Food Tour: $94
  • Galway Food Tour: $109
  • Galway Food Tours: $111
  • Private Irish Cooking Experience in the Heart of Gaeltacht: $138
  • Farm to Table Experience and Irish Cooking Class in Galway: $190

Typical Food Prices in Dublin

Below are a few samples from actual travelers for food and meal costs in Dublin:


  • Lunch Lynam's Pub
    3.95

Food Tours and Cooking Classes in Dublin

Also, here are some specific examples of food and dining related activities in Dublin.

  • Discover the Flavors of Dublin on a Guided Street Food Tour: $30
  • Dublin 3-Course Dinner and Live Shows at The Irish House Party: $31
  • No Diet Club - Best Food Tour in Dublin !: $60
  • Dublin Irish Night Show, Dance and Traditional 3-Course Dinner: $61
  • Grand Canal Cruise with Dinner: $73
  • Delicious Walking Food Tour: $82
  • Delicious Dublin Food Tour: $83
  • Private Cooking Class in a Modern Home with Sea Views in Skerries, Dublin: $84
  • Dublin Delicious Donut Adventure & Walking Food Tour: $87
  • Howth Coastal Craft Beer and Seafood Tour: $97
  • Bread, Beer & Bia: Irish Cooking Class & Dinner in Dublin: $100
  • Private Market Tour and Irish Cooking Class in a Modern Skerries Home: $102

Entertainment
  • Entertainment Entrance tickets, shows, etc.
    Galway 12
    Dublin 25

Tours and Activities in Galway

Some specific costs of activities, tours, and entrance tickets for Galway are as follows:

  • A taste of the Craic: A self-guided tour exploring Galway's local gastronomy: $7.26
  • Cong The Quiet Man Museum Skip-the-Line Ticket: $8.31
  • Old Town Self-Guided Walking Tour: $8.59
  • City Centre App-Based Self-Guided Audio Tour: $8.99
  • Galway's City Centre: A Self-Guided Audio Tour: $8.99
  • Uncover Secrets with Galway's In-App Audio Tour: $11
  • Welcome to Galway Walking Tour: $16
  • Burren Botany Experience: $17
  • The Welcome to Galway Walking Tour: $17
  • City Sightseeing Hop-On Hop-Off Bus Tour: $17
  • The Legendary Walking Tour of Galway: $18
  • Evening Guided Walking Tour: $22

Typical Entertainment Prices in Dublin

Here are a few typical costs in Dublin for activities, ticket prices, and tours that come from previous visitors:


  • Wild Wicklow Tour
    26
  • Guinness Brewery for Two
    27
  • St Pauls Cathedral
    4.50
  • Dublin Writer's Museum
    6.30

Tours and Activities in Dublin

Here are a few actual costs in Dublin for available activities, ticket prices, and tours:

  • First Discovery Walk and Reading Walking Tour: $3.26
  • Self Guided Tours Dublin With 100 Captivating Audio Stories: $3.30
  • Dublin Scavenger Hunt and Best Landmarks Self-Guided Tour: $4.41
  • Retracing Viking Origins on a Self-Guided Audio Tour: $4.67
  • Dublin city tour: audio guide for smartphone in French: $5.44
  • Dublin city tour: audio guide in your smartphone: $5.44
  • Self Guided City Audio Tour in Dublin: $5.52
  • City Exploration Game and Tour on your Phone: $6.51
  • Self-Guided Highlights Scavenger Hunt & Walking Tour: $6.52
  • Escape Game and Tour: $6.52
  • Temple Bar Self-Guided Must-See Highlights Tour: $7.50
  • Dublin Retracing Viking Origins on a Self-Guided Audio Tour: $7.71

Alcohol
  • Alcohol Drinks for one day
    Galway 15
    Dublin 17

Sample the Local Flavors in Galway

Some specific costs for nightlife related activities in Galway:

  • Traditional Irish Poitin & Gin Distillery Tour: $361

Sample the Local Flavors in Dublin

Also in Dublin, these are the prices for nightlife and alcohol related activities from various tour providers:

  • Authentic Brewery Tour: $11
  • Generation Pub Crawl: $15
  • Dublin Epic Pub Crawl: Experience Dublin's pubs and nightlife: $15
  • "Dublin Delight Pub Expedition" Pub Crawl: $16
  • The Dublin Liberties Distillery: Tour with Whiskey Tasting: $18
  • The Dublin Liberties Distillery - Guided Tour and Whiskey Tasting: $19
  • Teeling Whiskey Distillery Tour & Tasting: $22
  • Skip the Line: Teeling Whiskey Distillery Tour and Tasting in Dublin Ticket: $22
  • The Black Experience Pub Tour: $22
  • Pearse Lyons Whiskey Distillery Experience: $24
  • City Pub Crawl Experience: $24
  • Roe and Co Distillery Cocktail Workshop Experience: $27


When comparing the travel costs between Galway and Dublin, we can see that Dublin is more expensive. However, the two cities are actually relatively comparable in price, as the difference is somewhat minimal. Generally, this means that you could travel with generally the same travel style and level of luxury in each place. Since both cities are in Europe, it's no surprise that their costs are relatively close, as many destinations here have somewhat similar travel prices overall.

If you're trying to decide if either of these two destinations are within your price range, also see Is Galway Expensive? and Is Dublin Expensive?.


Which is Bigger, Galway or Dublin?

Dublin has a larger population, and is about 10 times larger than the population of Galway. When comparing the sizes of Galway and Dublin, keep in mind that a larger population does not always imply the destination has more attractions or better activities. So, always research the type of place that you want to visit along with the activities and attractions that interest you.


When is the best time to visit Galway or Dublin?

Both destinations experience a temperate climate with four distinct seasons. And since both cities are in the northern hemisphere, summer is in July and winter is in January.

Should I visit Galway or Dublin in the Summer?

The summer attracts plenty of travelers to both Galway and Dublin. Most visitors come to Galway for the city activities and the family-friendly experiences during these months. Also, the summer months attract visitors to Dublin because of the city activities, the music scene, and the family-friendly experiences.

In the summer, Galway is around the same temperature as Dublin. Typically, the summer temperatures in Galway in July average around 16°C (60°F), and Dublin averages at about 16°C (60°F).

Galway usually receives less sunshine than Dublin during summer. Galway gets 142 hours of sunny skies, while Dublin receives 166 hours of full sun in the summer.

In July, Galway usually receives more rain than Dublin. Galway gets 54 mm (2.1 in) of rain, while Dublin receives 50 mm (2 in) of rain each month for the summer.


  • Summer Average Temperatures July
    Galway 16°C (60°F) 
    Dublin 16°C (60°F)

Should I visit Galway or Dublin in the Autumn?

The autumn brings many poeple to Galway as well as Dublin. The autumn months attract visitors to Galway because of the city's sights and attractions and the shopping scene. Also, the city's sights and attractions, the shopping scene, and the music scene are the main draw to Dublin this time of year.

In October, Galway is generally around the same temperature as Dublin. Daily temperatures in Galway average around 11°C (52°F), and Dublin fluctuates around 11°C (52°F).

In the autumn, Galway often gets around the same amount of sunshine as Dublin. Galway gets 96 hours of sunny skies this time of year, while Dublin receives 97 hours of full sun.

Galway receives a lot of rain in the autumn. Galway usually gets more rain in October than Dublin. Galway gets 142 mm (5.6 in) of rain, while Dublin receives 70 mm (2.7 in) of rain this time of the year.


  • Autumn Average Temperatures October
    Galway 11°C (52°F) 
    Dublin 11°C (52°F)

Should I visit Galway or Dublin in the Winter?

Both Dublin and Galway are popular destinations to visit in the winter with plenty of activities. The museums, the shopping scene, and the cuisine are the main draw to Galway this time of year. Also, many travelers come to Dublin for the museums, the shopping scene, and the cuisine.

Galway is around the same temperature as Dublin in the winter. The daily temperature in Galway averages around 6°C (42°F) in January, and Dublin fluctuates around 6°C (42°F).

Galway usually receives around the same amount of sunshine as Dublin during winter. Galway gets 59 hours of sunny skies, while Dublin receives 56 hours of full sun in the winter.

It's quite rainy in Galway. In January, Galway usually receives more rain than Dublin. Galway gets 116 mm (4.6 in) of rain, while Dublin receives 69 mm (2.7 in) of rain each month for the winter.


  • Winter Average Temperatures January
    Galway 6°C (42°F) 
    Dublin 6°C (42°F)

Should I visit Galway or Dublin in the Spring?

Both Dublin and Galway during the spring are popular places to visit. Many travelers come to Galway for the activities around the city. Furthermore, many visitors come to Dublin in the spring for the activities around the city.

In the spring, Galway is around the same temperature as Dublin. Typically, the spring temperatures in Galway in April average around 9°C (48°F), and Dublin averages at about 8°C (47°F).

In the spring, Galway often gets around the same amount of sunshine as Dublin. Galway gets 153 hours of sunny skies this time of year, while Dublin receives 157 hours of full sun.

Galway usually gets around the same amount of rain in April as Dublin. Galway gets 52 mm (2.1 in) of rain, while Dublin receives 51 mm (2 in) of rain this time of the year.


  • Spring Average Temperatures April
    Galway 9°C (48°F) 
    Dublin 8°C (47°F)

Typical Weather for Dublin and Galway

Galway Dublin
Temp (°C) Rain (mm) Temp (°C) Rain (mm)
Jan 6°C (42°F) 116 mm (4.6 in) 6°C (42°F) 69 mm (2.7 in)
Feb 6°C (42°F) 88 mm (3.4 in) 6°C (42°F) 50 mm (2 in)
Mar 7°C (45°F) 103 mm (4.1 in) 7°C (44°F) 54 mm (2.1 in)
Apr 9°C (48°F) 52 mm (2.1 in) 8°C (47°F) 51 mm (2 in)
May 11°C (53°F) 82 mm (3.2 in) 11°C (52°F) 55 mm (2.2 in)
Jun 14°C (57°F) 86 mm (3.4 in) 14°C (57°F) 56 mm (2.2 in)
Jul 16°C (60°F) 54 mm (2.1 in) 16°C (60°F) 50 mm (2 in)
Aug 16°C (60°F) 118 mm (4.6 in) 15°C (60°F) 71 mm (2.8 in)
Sep 14°C (57°F) 110 mm (4.3 in) 14°C (56°F) 67 mm (2.6 in)
Oct 11°C (52°F) 142 mm (5.6 in) 11°C (52°F) 70 mm (2.7 in)
Nov 8°C (46°F) 101 mm (4 in) 8°C (46°F) 65 mm (2.5 in)
Dec 6°C (44°F) 125 mm (4.9 in) 6°C (44°F) 76 mm (3 in)