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Cork City

Known by fiercely proud locals as “the real capital of Ireland”, Cork City is a vibrant, creative, and hip cosmopolitan hub, with extraordinary surprises around every corner. Built on an island in the River Lee, it lies upstream from Cork Harbour.

Home to gorgeous galleries and stunning scenery, the west is home to a bevy of a...

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Cork City

Cork City is locally known as “the real capital of Ireland”. A compact, culturally rich centre surrounded by interesting waterways, Cork City is chock full of great restaurants, fed by arguably the best foodie scene in the country.

Like Venice, the city of Cork is built on water; the River Lee flows majestically through its centre, where grand Georgian parades and narrow 17th century alleys contrast with fine modern buildings like the Opera House.

The main thoroughfare is Patrick Street (known as “Panna”), which runs from Patrick's Bridge on the Lee’s North Channel through the main shopping area to the Grand Parade and the river's South Channel.

The heart of Cork is heaving with snug pubs hosting live music sessions, cafes and restaurants selling excellent local food, all flanked by smart boutiques and major department stores. At every corner you'll come across another panoramic view, interesting architectural feature or one of the top art galleries or museums in Ireland.

Visitors to Cork City can ring the Shandon Bells in the 300-year-old tower of Saint Anne's Church and marvel at the French Gothic spires of Saint Finbarre's Cathedral. For the culturally peckish, catch an exhibition at the stunning Crawford Gallery—home to an excellent permanent collection dating from the 17th century to the present day.

Don’t miss the famous English Market, famously put on the map by Queen Elizabeth after her visit in 2011—you’ll find a paradise of artisan food, with stalls selling local delicacies like tripe, black pudding and crubeens. Wash it all down afterwards with a visit to the famous Cork Beamish and Crawford Brewery.

Immerse yourself in Irish sports with a visit to Páirc Uí Chaoimh, the home of local GAA, to catch a hurling or football game, or spend an exciting night watching greyhound racing at Curraheen Park. Within a stone’s throw of the city is Blarney Castle, home to the famous Blarney Stone; tradition says that those who kiss the stone will receive the gift of eloquence. For those looking for a day trip, there are numerous picturesque fishing villages within easy reach that offer a change from the buzz and bustle of Cork City.

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