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Due to coronavirus (COVID-19) travel advisories, some destinations may be unavailable for certain dates. Find out more.

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Cork Holiday Guide

Cork is officially Ireland's second city, but it is affectionately known by locals as the 'real capital of Ireland'. It is a city made for discovering on foot, thanks to the River Lee which flows around its centre, creating a compact island that is jam-packed with grand Georgian streets, intersected by medieval alleys and modern architectural triumphs such as the opera house.

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.

Shopping in Cork

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.

Restaurants in Cork

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.

Views of Cork

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.

Sport in Cork

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.

Nature in Cork

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. 

Enjoy Cork

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.

Q: Should I book a car while on holiday in Cork?

A: Many travellers to Cork and the wider Cork region opt to rent cars. Whether it's getting to those out-of-the-way places or just hitting the highway with no plan, having your own set of wheels will help make your getaway memorable. Take a look at our guide to Cheap Car Hire in Cork and see if there's anything that stands out.

Q: Which airports can I fly in to for a holiday to Cork?

A: Your best bet is to fly into Cork (ORK). This is a major airport in Cork, operating 932 international flights per month.

Q: What are the most popular types of hotels for a holiday to Cork?

A: Most travellers choose to bed down in hotels when visiting Cork. But you don't always have to follow the crowd. You'll also find bed & breakfasts, apartments and guest houses in abundance here, and you can book them all with Expedia.

Q: What does a Cork holiday booking with Expedia include?

A: You can start off by picking your hotel, flight and car. Lock in as much or as little as you like. Next comes the more exciting stuff — booking fun activities and one-of-a-kind experiences. With loads of options to choose from, arranging your upcoming getaway in Cork will be simple.

Q: What is the best way to save money on my holiday to Cork?

A: The simplest way to save is to bundle everything with the help of Expedia. Hotels, Flights and Car Rentals can all be easily combined into a custom-built package — and by doing this, you'll save time too. Keep this in mind before you book.

Q: What are the best things to do in Cork?

A: If a stop in Cork is on your agenda, you really ought to spend some time checking out University College Cork and Cork City Hall. Saint Fin Barre's Cathedral is another popular attraction you can't miss.




Guide to Exploring County Cork


Top Deals on Flights

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Top Hotel Deals

See all 492 properties in County Cork
Rochestown Park Hotel €89
Reviewed on 7 Aug 2020
See details
 
Rochestown Park Hotel

Rochestown Park Hotel

Rochestown Road, Douglas, Cork
     
    4.1 of 5
    4.0 out of 5.0 Stars

    Stayed in a classic room on the 4th floor,comfortable but not very big.Not as described in picture but adequate. Will stay again.Good breakfast with great choice.Had dinner in Suttons restaurant and very good.

    The Maritime Hotel €113
    Reviewed on 1 Apr 2020
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    The Maritime Hotel

    The Maritime Hotel

    The Quay, Bantry, West Cork
       
      4.4 of 5
      4.0 out of 5.0 Stars

      Most enjoyable

      The Kingsley €125
      Reviewed on 24 Apr 2020
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      The Kingsley

      The Kingsley

      Victoria Cross, Cork, Cork
         
        4.6 of 5
        4.0 out of 5.0 Stars

        Walking distance to many sights. Unfortunately we were unable to experience other features of the hotel as a result of COVID-19. Food was delicious, but small portions for the price paid for room service.

        Radisson Blu Hotel & Spa, Cork €112
        Reviewed on 24 Feb 2020
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        Radisson Blu Hotel & Spa, Cork

        Radisson Blu Hotel & Spa, Cork

        Ditchley House Little Island, Cork, Cork
           
          4.2 of 5
          4.0 out of 5.0 Stars

          I stayed here recently for my sisters 40th birthday and couldn't have been happier. The staff are incredibly friendly and efficient- we felt so welcome. Milan was fantastic in the restaurant. I look forward to staying here again

          Westlodge Hotel & Pondlodge Cottages €117
          Reviewed on 9 Mar 2020
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          Westlodge Hotel & Pondlodge Cottages

          Westlodge Hotel & Pondlodge Cottages

          Seafield, Bantry, Cork
             
            4.0 of 5
            3.0 out of 5.0 Stars

            Had a great stay , room was clean and comfy and bar food was gorgeous

            Island View House €68
            Reviewed on 5 Jul 2020
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            Island View House

            Island View House

            Castletownbere, Castletownbere, Cork
               
              4.5 of 5
              3.0 out of 5.0 Stars

              Lovely breakfast, cute rooms, cute town, lovely, lovely hosts. Thank you!

              Oriel House Hotel €88
              Reviewed on 16 Jul 2020
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              Oriel House Hotel

              Oriel House Hotel

              Ballincollig, Ballincollig, Cork
                 
                4.1 of 5
                4.0 out of 5.0 Stars

                Very lovely rooms. Comfy, clean. Move bathroom and excellent service in the bar and restaurant.

                Ambassador Hotel & Health Club Cork €109
                Reviewed on 5 Mar 2020
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                Ambassador Hotel & Health Club Cork

                Ambassador Hotel & Health Club Cork

                Military Hill, Saint Lukes Cross, Cork, Cork
                   
                  4.1 of 5
                  4.0 out of 5.0 Stars

                  Clean, quiet, comfortable rooms with a view. The food is fantastic! (We had dinner and breakfast). The robes and slippers are a nice touch. Great location - a short walk from restaurants and bars (I highly recommend the Shelbourne Bar for an Irish Whiskey tasting experience.)

                  Top Activities in County Cork

                  See all 211 things to do in County Cork