Experience Gaelic Games offers visitors the chance to try their hand at some of the oldest games in the world. Whether visitors are completely new to the sports or have tried them out in the past, the organizers create experiences that tailor to the needs and desires of those who go. This may include team building exercises or instructions on the basics followed by scrimmages. For those who can’t or don’t wish to engage in physical activity, background information on the games and a demonstrations are also available.
- Learning the basics – For many visitors, Experience Gaelic Games provides them either their first exposure to the sports or their first opportunity to play them since they had only seen them on video. The crew at Experience Gaelic Games tailors experiences to any level. Because the sports require unique skills, such as soloing (in Gaelic football, players running with the ball must either bounce it off the ground or play it off their foot every three steps), groups and individuals who are new to the games will start off by learning how to execute those skills.
- Scrimmages – For groups of people who are willing to go beyond learning the basic skills, you’ll have the opportunity to scrimmage with the EGG crew and put your new skills to good use. Nobody’s ready to play in the All Ireland finals after just one session, but you’ll be able to go home saying that you’ve played the games. You might even decide to look for or start a local group that plays them.
- Learning the Jig – This is an optional part of the experience and takes place on Sundays at Jig.ie. Instructors are ready to teach you the ancient Irish dance form. This is an extra challenge for those bragging about how impressively they played the previous day, and it gives a chance for those who are better at dance than at sport to level the score.
- Dinner and drinks at “The Church” – The building where Arthur Guinness tied the knot is now a bar, and the program has an optional element that includes dinner and a drink. Spend the evening laughing and drinking to the day’s events over a pint of the black stuff.
Experience Gaelic Games offers a variety of customized experiences.
|Activities and Main Course/Drink at Church Bar|
|Groups of 10+||€45|
|Groups of 9 or fewer||€50|
|Activities and 2 Course Dinner in Gallery Restaurant/Drink|
|Groups of 10+||€65|
|Groups of 9 or fewer||€70|
|Ceili (Irish Dancing) & Main Court in the bar with drink|
|Groups of 10+||€25|
|Groups of 9 or fewer||€30|
|Ceili and 3 Course Dinner in The Gallery Restaurant, including pint/glass of wine|
|Groups of 10+||€55|
|Groups of 9 or fewer||€60|
Stay & Play
Groups of 15+ can arrange for a session, a night at a hotel or guesthouse, an Irish Stew and a pint afterwards for €50.
- Book in advance – Whether you’re traveling solo or with a group, book your experience in advance. They can usually make arrangements for individuals, couples, and small groups to join with larger ones, but the more notice you give them, the easier it is to do so.
- Dress to play (or bring clothes) – This is a real GAA club, so shower and changing facilities are available. If you decide to play, as most do, you’ll want to have clothes that you can change into afterwards.
- Special needs or requests – The staff do an excellent job of accommodating anyone who come out, but it can help them plan the experience accordingly if they know beforehand any special needs or requests.
- Special Programs – Experience Gaelic Games features several programs that combine the sports experience with dining/drinking/partying, accommodations, and Irish dance. See whether you’d like to get more out of your experience with one or more of the add-ons.
The experience takes place at Na Fianna GAA Club, which is conveniently located close to the city center. Taxis provide the most convenient access to the Club, though other options are available.
- Taxi – From the city center, it’s abut a €10 ride that’ll take less than ten minutes.
- Bus – From the city center, buses 4 and 9 going north from O’Connell Street stop right across Mobhi Road.
- The Gaelic sports of football and hurling are among the oldest sports in the world, dating back over 3,000 years.
- The premier athletes in Gaelic football and hurling retain their amateur status and must work full-time jobs while training in their free time.
- Hurling is the world’s oldest and fastest sport on grass.
- Many of the fouls in both sports are broadly defined and leave a lot of discretion in the hands of the officials.
- The crew at EGG include highly experienced hurlers and footballers, some of whom have played at the club and county levels. One even won the U-21 All Ireland Football Championship.