Cork holidays offer you the chance to be captivated by the beauty and charm of this Irish coastal gem. Explore the city’s scenic streets and stroll along the picturesque River Lee, passing the pastel-coloured townhouses lining its banks before taking to its waters to admire Cork’s natural charms.
The city has a big heart and a welcoming atmosphere. Experience the world-famous Irish hospitality in a place where everyone feels like a friend. It’s also a city full of youthful vigour, which builds on its past traditions.
Kiss the famous Blarney Stone, stock up on the city’s finest produce at a local market or head out to experience the incredible Irish countryside by embarking on a coastal hike.
Perfect as a family-friendly holiday or a romantic getaway, Cork holiday packages have it all.
Cork holidays offer you the chance to explore this city’s cosmopolitan streets as well as the surrounding countryside.
Cork is a great city to discover on foot. There are a number of walking tours covering the top sights, with some of these tailored to appeal to food or history lovers. Another fantastic way to see the city is from the water – head down to the River Lee at dusk and join a guided kayak tour.
It’s a great chance to discover the history of Cork as you navigate the waterways of a city sometimes known as the ‘Venice of Northern Europe’. Your trip could include a spot of stargazing or the chance to be serenaded by beautiful birdsong.
One of County Cork’s most unusual claims to fame is its old prison, which was the largest of its kind in the world during the 19th century. Journey out to Spike Island to visit the 200-year-old, star-shaped Fort Mitchell, which once housed more than 2,300 prisoners.
From Cork, head about 25 minutes to the coastal town of Cobh before taking a scenic ferry ride to this fascinating attraction. If you’re feeling particularly brave, pay a visit after dark.
Cork lays claim to being Ireland’s food capital, so prepare yourself for some serious feasting during your stay. The city’s popular farmers’ markets are the perfect place to sample local fare.
A great spot to check out is the covered English Market, which spans an area between Princes Street and the Grand Parade. This historic market – a tourist attraction in its own right – has been serving up delicious delights from fresh fruit to seafood and locally farmed produce since it first opened in 1788.
Holidays in Cork don’t have to be confined to the city limits. Situated six miles northwest of the city is the historic Blarney Castle and its beautiful gardens. Built in the 15th century, the structure is one of Ireland’s greatest treasures and home to an unusual attraction.
Climb the ancient steps to the top of the tower to discover the Blarney Stone. Legend has it that if you kiss the stone you will be gifted with unrivalled eloquence, which should make for entertaining holiday stories when you get back.
Cork is situated towards the southern end of the Wild Atlantic Way, making it a handy base if you’re planning to walk or drive along part of this famous coastal trail. Get up close to wildlife or stroll barefoot on the unspoilt beaches you’ll find along the way.
The full route covers 1,550 miles (2,500 kilometres), but wandering along just a short stretch of the southern shores is a fine introduction to the breathtaking beauty in this part of the world.
Make the most of city breaks to Cork by staying right in the heart of the action. Basing yourself in the centre makes river walks, museum visits and eating out easy.
One option is the four-star Imperial Hotel, which is just a five-minute walk from Cork City Hall. Alternatively, try the five-star Hayfield Manor – a stunning hotel with family suites and a stylish spa.
The River Lee runs right through the city centre and there’s an abundance of accommodation near its banks. Many hotels here offer river views, which are a nice touch for couples taking romantic holidays in Cork.
Clayton Hotel Silver Springs to the east of the centre overlooks the river and Blackrock Castle. To the west, The Kingsley is situated close to Wellington Bridge in a quieter part of the city.
Head out of the city to find various spas, which are ideal for a relaxing break. Fota Island Hotel & Spa is wonderfully located for wandering around the nearby wildlife park and harbour point.
The Maryborough Hotel and Spa is next to Douglas Golf Club, if you fancy a round while you’re staying in the city. There are lots of great golf courses to try here – you’re under an hour from the stunning course next to the lighthouse at the Old Head of Kinsale.
The local currency in Cork is the euro (EUR). Credit and debit cards are accepted throughout Cork and the rest of the Republic of Ireland.
Cork is easy to navigate on foot or bike. You can also take taxis, hire a car or use local bus services to get between the city’s sights.
English is an official language and the most widely spoken in Cork. The city has its own accent that includes dialect words influenced by Irish.
The first Monday in May, June, August and October are all public holidays in Cork. So is St. Patrick’s Day (17 March).
Cork was founded by Saint Finbarr in the 7th century, making it one of Ireland’s oldest cities. It suffered numerous raids and invasions throughout the ensuing years before prospering in the 18th century on the back of trade in goods such as butter and whiskey. There’s even a Butter Museum to help you explore the role this key export played in Cork’s story.
The city’s inhabitants suffered from a severe famine in the 19th century, while Cork later became known as the ‘Rebel City’ due to its part in the Irish War of Independence in the early 20th century. The Cork Public Museum is a great place to understand more about this rich past, while Blackrock Castle is a must-visit site.
Gaelic culture remains strong in Cork and is especially prevalent within the arts scene. Music, literature and dance are all important elements of the traditional Irish way of life that can be enjoyed during holidays in Cork. The city is home to many artists, writers, poets and musicians who enliven its streets and venues with colourful performances.
Triskel Arts Centre is a cultural hub in an old church where you can catch some unique performances. Crawford Art Gallery is more traditional, full of historic and modern paintings, sculptures and video installations from Ireland and Europe. Cork is also a festival city, holding an array of events throughout the year.
Whether it’s on the stalls of the English Market or the menus of the city’s restaurants, a mouthwatering feast of food awaits in Cork. Start your day with a hearty full Irish breakfast and take advantage of the fabulous fish dishes here – with chowders and marinated lobster served on the banks of the Lee.
You can also search out the cheeses that are unique to this part of Ireland. Try Gubbeen Smoked Cheese, Ardsallagh Goats Cheese or Toonsbridge Mozarella. Scúp gelato, meanwhile, is a rich and smooth ice cream that serves as the perfect sweet treat in an area famed for its delicious dairy products.
Take some time out in the chic and cosmopolitan capital of the UAE. The city has beautiful beaches and incredible attractions, such as the stunning Sheikh Zayed Grand Mosque.
Abu Dhabi Holidays
From its world-famous castle to the cobbled streets of the Royal Mile, Scotland’s capital packs incredible history into every corner of this compact, cultured city.
Explore one of Europe’s most sought after destinations. Discover Marienplatz central square and wander the English Garden to get a flavour of this exciting location.
Belgium’s capital city contains a host of unforgettable experiences for visitors. From the ornate Grand Place and picturesque gardens, to the remarkable Atomium.