Family activities are at the heart of the inaugural Galway Sea Festival taking place over the June Bank Holiday weekend (Friday May 30- Monday June 3 ).
There are over eighty different on water and on shore events specifically geared for families and all are designed to be affordable or are free. In addition to taster sessions of water sports- windsurfing, paddle boarding, kayaking, scuba diving, there are also opportunities to go sailing on riverboats, yachts, powerboats and cruisers!
The very popular Corrib Princess is offering a special family ticket for its sailings at 2.30pm and 4.30pm on Saturday June 1 and Monday June 3 and 2.30pm on Sunday June 2. Or for an unforgettable experience why not take a short sailing trip on Galway bay with the whole family?
Sail Galway Bay is offering trips on board yachts, powerboats and cruisers from Thursday May 30- Monday June 3. Setting out from Galway harbour out onto Galway Bay, 90 minute trips on yacht and motor boat will go towards Kilcolgan point to Blackrock and in via Salthill (weather permitting ).
The 30/45 minute trips on powerboats and open cruisers will start at harbour and out into the bay towards Hare Island to Mutton Island and up the river to the Claddagh (tide permitting ).
Sail Galway Bay’s has the most varied fleet of licensed passenger boats on the west coast and can cater for young and old, individuals and groups and families of all ages.
An exciting event to watch is the International Canoe Polo competitions taking place in the Claddagh Basin on Saturday June 1 and Sunday June 2. Organised by Galway Kayak Club, this exciting event will see 20 teams in four divisions battle it out over the two days. A fiercely competitive team sport, canoe polo is a played in short, fast halves between 10 players who play in a polo kayak and use their hands and paddles to strike the ball. From the serious international players, to the retired casuals, there is someone for every spectator to cheer on.
Two other events worth watching are a Display Jump from Sky Dive Ireland at 2pm over South Park (weather permitting ) on Saturday 1 and Sunday 2nd June 2 and a simulation of an air sea rescue exercise in association with the Irish Coastguard and the RNLI on Saturday June 1 at 3.30pm. Viewable from the Prom in Salthill, the exercise will involve a Sikorsky 92 Helicopter and Galway Lifeboat ( RNLI ) demonstrate a typical winching operation used by both the Irish Coastguard and the RNLI.,
If you are in Salthill on Saturday and Sunday June 1/2 where there’s a chance to build the castle of your dreams with sandcastle competitions on Ladies Beach! Sponsored by the Salthill Hotel there will be prizes for the 1st, 2nd and 3rd placed each day. Entries from individuals or teams of up to 4 persons are accepted. Children 4+ to be accompanied.
Nearer to town a fun fair with a variety of rides including carousel will be located in South Park Playground. Open from 5-10pm on Friday and 2-10pm Saturday- Monday this will provide hours of amusement for children of all ages.
You might be forgiven for thinking you have walked into the set of Pirates from the Caribbean on Saturday 2nd June if you are out and about on Quay Street and High Street in the heart of the Latin Quarter. Cue performances of sea shanties in harmony as three pirates attempt to raise funds for their sick parrots’ benevolent fund! Fun and frolics all around!
Full details of all Galway Sea Festival events are on www.galwayseafestival.com To confirm bookings of activities please contact the providers directly. Download the festival brochure with full details on www.galwayseafestival.com For up to the minute details please join the conversation on www.facebook.com/galwayseafestival