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Exploring Cork on foot will open out to you interesting waterways, lively traditional bars, modern art centres, historical buildings, fascinating independent shops and some of the best restaurants that Ireland has to offer.
Cork is a shopper’s delight, not least because it still has a number of thriving independent traders that help set its shopping district apart from the interchangeable chains that dominate many other cities. Taking a stroll through the winding alleys around Grand Parade and Patrick Street you will discover many quirky independent retailers offering vintage clothes, handmade crafts and bespoke jewellery. When the shopping becomes too much there are also plenty of atmospheric cafes to relax and discuss your purchases in.
Cork has the best foodie scene in the country and lovers of fine foods are spoilt for choice when it comes to eating out. It’s not just in restaurants, however, where Cork’s love of gastronomy comes to life: a trip to the English Market on Princes Street is enough to work up a hearty appetite in itself, with beautifully presented local produce (cheeses, ham, salmon, buttered eggs, sausages and artisanal breads) mingling with quality imports like olives and wines.
Some of the finest views of Cork can be enjoyed from two historic buildings: Elizabeth Fort and Cork City Gaol. On Sundays the Elizabeth Fort Market Festival will reward you with more than stunning views: Irish crafts, gourmet food and entertainment are also hosted within its historic walls. The views of the west of the city, including Cork’s university, from the old Gaol make it well worth the bus or taxi ride out to it.
Páirc Uí Chaoimh is a 50,000 capacity stadium in Ballintemple. It is the home of the Cork Gaelic Athletic Association, so you can always catch live football here on match days or enjoy a tour of the grounds every Monday and Wednesday.
With the tranquil River Lea never far away Cork provides many chances to get away from it all, whilst never being too far away from the amenities of the city. Fitzgerald Park offers tranquillity and natural beauty in the heart of Cork, whilst Lough Park is set around a freshwater limestone lake teeming with wildlife just one kilometre south-west of the city centre.
With a warm welcome on every corner, modern art galleries, cosy pubs, great restaurants, historic buildings, regular festivals and shops with a difference, Cork has certainly claimed its place as the ‘real capital of Ireland’ in the hearts of its many visitors.
This family-friendly Fota hotel is within 3 mi (5 km) of Barryscourt Castle, Fota Wildlife Park and Fota House Arboretum and Gardens. Titanic Trail and Cobh Golf Club are also within 6 miles (10 km).
Situated in Cork, this spa hotel is within a 15-minute walk of Cork County Hall and University College Cork. Saint Fin Barre's Cathedral and Bells of Shandon are also within 2 miles (3 km).
Situated in Douglas, this spa hotel is 0.7 mi (1.2 km) from Douglas Golf Club and within 3 miles (5 km) of Cork City Hall and Saint Fin Barre's Cathedral. Pairc Ui Rinn and Christ the King Church are also within 3 miles (5 km).
This family-friendly Kinsale hotel is located near the airport, within 1 mi (2 km) of Mount Long Castle and Kinsale Rugby Club. Charles Fort is 1.4 mi (2.3 km) away.
Located in the heart of Cork, this spa hotel is within 1 mile (2 km) of Custom House, Cork City Hall and Bells of Shandon. St. Anne's Shandon Church and Saint Fin Barre's Cathedral are also within 1 mile (2 km).
This family-friendly Cork hotel is located on the riverfront, within a 10-minute walk of Granary Theatre, Saint Fin Barre's Cathedral and University College Cork. Bells of Shandon and St. Anne's Shandon Church are also within 1 mile (2 km).
Located in Victorian Quarter, this hotel is within a 10-minute walk of Everyman Palace Theatre and Cork City Hall. Bells of Shandon and St. Anne's Shandon Church are also within 15 minutes.
Located in Victorian Quarter, this hotel is within a 10-minute walk of Everyman Palace Theatre, Cork City Hall and Bells of Shandon. St. Anne's Shandon Church and Saint Fin Barre's Cathedral are also within 1 mile (2 km).