Galway voted the friendliest city in Europe – and No. 2 isn’t bad either- Courtesy of Pól Ó Conghaile Irish Independent

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Here’s a little good news in Level 5 lockdown – Condé Nast readers say Ireland is home to the two friendliest cities in Europe

Ireland woke up this morning to Level 5 lockdown.

But it’s not all doom-and-gloom. Today also brings news that it is home to the two friendliest cities in Europe.

Galway has been voted Europe’s friendliest city in the Condé Nast Traveller Reader Travel Awards 2020, with Dublin in second place.

“While Europe’s best cities are often judged on their ancient history, intricate architecture, unrivalled art scenes or amazing restaurants, sometimes what makes a place so great are its people,” the influential magazine said.

Europe’s 10 friendliest cities

Galway, Ireland

Dublin, Ireland

Valletta, Malta

Oporto, Portugal

Lisbon, Portugal

Bologna, Italy

Edinburgh, UK

Reykjavik, Iceland

Athens, Greece

Helsinki, Finland

The results come as all but essential businesses in Dublin and Galway, along with the rest of the country, have been shuttered for at least six weeks under Level 5 lockdown.

Tourism Officer Ruairí Lehman said Galway City Council was delighted with the news, seeing it as a recognition of the city’s people, particularly those working in the hospitality industry.

“This gives a much-needed boost and recognition to our industry who have worked so hard these last few months to offer a world-class service within the safety guidelines and restrictions in place.

“While it is a difficult time for the industry, we will be open again soon and look forward to offering our award-winning welcome to visitors again.”

“Galway without tourists has been really one of the strangest things,” said Ronan Greaney of the local pizzeria, The Dough Bros.

 

 

 

 

 

Dough Bros. in Galway. Photo: Dine in Galway

But businesses have adjusted and found new ways to operate, he added. “We are dying to see everyone back in Galway and us cooking for them again, as soon as we can.”

“In what has been a devastating year for travel and tourism, this is some good news – reminding people everywhere that, when the time is right, the entire island of Ireland is a great choice for a holiday,” added Niall Gibbons, CEO of Tourism Ireland.

Editorial courtesy of Courtesy of Pól Ó Conghaile Irish Independent October 22 2020