For first time travellers to Ireland, the university city of Cork is a haven of hidden gems and unbelievable sights. Situated by the sea with an awe-inspiring harbour, this is the perfect destination for both city and coastline. All enveloped in a magical metropolis of history, culture and southern Irish charm. Looking to book your stay soon? Here are 5 of the most incredible attractions in Cork that you won’t want to miss.
The best place to get a glimpse of local life is at the 18th Century covered market, and it’s a popular place for residents and tourists alike. The traditional market is home to some of the best regional food producers and traders, and it’s the ultimate spot to discover the culinary delights or Ireland’s food capital. Pick up some tasty organic treats and don’t forget to stop for a brew at Coffee Central – a family run business that has traded for more than 50 years!
You won’t want to miss the grounds of the city’s University College, one of the most beautiful campuses in the country. The college opened in 1849, and the site was chosen specifically because it was believed to have had a connection with the patron saint of Cork, Saint Finbarr. Whilst you’re there, don’t forget to visit the Lewis Glucksman Gallery where you will find the latest exhibitions and inspiring displays.
Cork City Gaol is a superb attraction for the whole family. If you’re travelling with children, a tour of the Gaol is a must. This former prison, museum and heritage centre is steeped in Cork’s past and is considered to be one of the city’s treasures and suitable for all ages. Each cell is furnished with lifelike wax figures to bring to life some of the prison’s inmates, whilst the audio-visual show will provide you with an education of the social history 19th century Ireland. Daytime or evening tours are available.
Less than an hour’s drive away from Cork is the stunning Lismore Castle, one of the most remarkable castles in Ireland that is available for rent. Many visitors come here to enjoy the spectacular gardens where ancient yew trees, romantic meadows, and gorgeous vegetable beds make up 7 whole acres within the castle walls. The castle itself dates back to 1170 and features medieval architecture and detailing, including walls marked by historic cannonballs.
Head out of the city to experience the views of Ballycotton Cliff. Take the iconic Ballycotton Cliff Walk located at the seaside resort village of Ballycotton (which is a re-settlement of an older village submerged by coastal erosion) and experience the unspoiled beauty of the southern coastline. This is a fantastic trail no matter the weather, and the views are just as wonderful in the winter as they are in the summer. If you’re an avid photographer, you’ll want to stick around for sunset.
If you have time, be sure to explore the other areas of Ireland too, in addition to outdoor pursuits there are plenty of luxurious things to do too. If you’re interested in planning your visit to Ireland, do get in touch with us today.This entry was posted in Insider Tips and tagged cork, Ireland, things to do .