Everything You Need To Know about the Galway 2020 opening ceremony

The moment everyone has been waiting for is finally here! Galway will officially become the 2020 European Capital of Culture alongside Rijeka in Croatia which had its Opening Ceremony earlier this week.


This Saturday, 8 February, Galway will host one of the biggest events it has ever seen, with a spectacular set of fiery performances to celebrate its achievement with all Galwegians.
To make this experience an easy and enjoyable one, here is everything you need to know about the event before you go.

Who? What? When? Where?

The Galway 2020 Opening Ceremony will take place in South Park, Claddagh, Galway on Saturday, 8 February. The Ceremony starts at 6 p.m but gates open at 4 p.m and entertainment begins at 5 p.m.
President Michael D. Higgins will be a special guest of the ceremony.


What to expect

This open-air event will be welcoming people from all over the county and country and will gather a big crowd in South Park. For that reason there will be several health and safety measures to comply with. Members of the public are advised against bringing umbrellas as they will be an inconvenience to everyone around. Buggies will not be suitable for this type of surface. Finally, pets may not agree with the loud noises of the pyrotechnics set to fire up in the air in the evening.

Storm Ciara

A weather-warning has been issued by MetEireann for high winds, rain and hail. Best to come prepared and wrapped up in warm waterproof clothes. Do not be afraid to bring wellies -no fashion statement needed because Galway’s Westend have set up a Welly Wardrobe which gives you the chance to leave your wellingtons in in this pop-up welly cloakroom to swap them for your dancing shoes and pick them up the next day after an evening of celebrations! More info here!


Random bag searches will be in effect on entry at the venue. Small bags are preferable as bigger ones may not be allowed in.


Roads will be completely closed around the Claddagh and along Grattan Road from 3 p.m. The Galway 2020 team advises people to use public transport to get to the venue or to get there by foot.


Huge Congratulations to Galway on its 2020 European Capital of Culture achievement!

Enjoy a weekend full of celebrations!