"Totally Corked" Top 5 Page for this destination Cork by Ekaterinburg

Cork Travel Guide: 620 reviews and 1,585 photos

Cork without the rose-tinted glasses

It's been over a year now since I wrote this page on Cork, my very first page on VT. It's still my most visited page and several people who've read it have now actually been here and sampled the real thing. A year on VT has made me much more conscious of my own city both in its own right and as it is likely to be viewed by travellers . While a personal viewpoint is always important it has slowly dawned on me that for this page to be of practical use to visitors I need to remove the rose-tinted glasses of the resident and be a lot more objective.

So with this in mind I have given this page a major overhaul and in response to queries on the Cork/Irish travel forums on VT, have added a lot of extra and practical information. There are now comprehensive transportation tips and details of day-trips which can be made from the city. A whole new 'Off the Beaten Path' section gives suggestions for exploring Cork in a little more depth and for the first time there are accommodation recommendations.

Three new travelogues give extra photos of Cork that will really give you a feel for the city. Everybody will probably enjoy the Shandon album, but as our great riverscapes are a major passion of mine, I've also included loads of photos of the many faces and aspects of the River Lee.

SOME HELPFUL CONTACT DETAILS:

Tourist Office: 021 4255100

Tourism Website: www.corkkery.ie

Hostel Accommodation : www.hostels-ireland.com

Bus Station, Parnell Place ( Central Bus Station ): 021-4508188

Kent Station ( Main railway station ): 021-450588

Cork Airport: 021-4313131

A river runs through it

Cork is a maritime city and along its eastern suburbs the river Lee meanders towards the outer harbour.The Lee runs right through Cork dividing into two channels which enclose the heart of the city. Every where you go will involve crossing a bridge and the walks along the river are a large part of the city's charm. The docks are within five minutes walk from the centre and ships from all round the world unload their cargo and later sail downriver on the evening tide. Along the banks of the river you will come upon an eclectic mix of buildings: some old and charming; some old and ugly;some new and striking; others new and glaringly out of place.

Cork will not dazzle you with its architecture. In fact the number of really impressive buildings could probably be counted on three hands. But it's full of interesting lanes and corners just waiting for intrepid travellers to discover them. In the main shopping area you are always just a few step away from the river and within walking distance of the old streets and houses around Shandon Church and St Finbar's Cathedral. A twenty minute walk or ride on the 8 Bus will bring you to the grounds of UCC and Fitsgerald's Park and from there you can cross over the Shaky Bridge to Sunday's Well. Back in the centre of town, you can relax in the cafe or sculpture room of the Crawford Gallery and for a really panoramic view of the city, take several deep breaths and climb Patrick's Hill.

When you're tired of sightseeing.......

... you can experience a little of what Cork has to offer in terms of pub life and other forms of entertainment. I mention pubs first because most visitors actively seek them out. Not that there's much seeking necessary as every second building in Cork is likely to be a pub. Good options for lunch and night-time craic many of them have free live music in the evenings. For listings check 'Whazon' the monthly entertainment guide, available in shops, restaurants etc., all over the city.

For sightseeing you can catch the City Tour every hour and get details of all day excursions from Bus Eireann's HQ at the Bus Office on Parnell Place. Cobh, Kinsale and Blarney are all within easy reach and accessible by public transport. The Tourism Office on Grand Parade, opposite the City Library will supply details of these and all other visitor attractions in the city and surrounds.

Eating out is very popular in Cork and there are some first-class restaurants. They are expensive though so you need check out menus and prices beforehand if you don't want to die of shock. For after dinner entertainment you could mosey along to a music gig, catch a little theatre or just do what the locals do, hang out in their favourte watering hole. On Wednesdays, Thursdays and Saturdays, there is greyhound racing in the Curaheen Stadium.

The photo shows the sculpture room in the Crawford Gallery. This is the largest of Cork's many galleries, admission is free and there are always at least two current exhibitions on as well as the permanent display. Details of this and most of the other places I've mentioned are given on the 'things to do ' tips on my page.

Pros and Cons
  • Pros:A really lively place to visit, loads of things to do
  • Cons:Okay, so it rains occasionally!
  • In a nutshell:A City for all seasons/reasons
  • Intro Updated Sep 28, 2010
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Reviews (45)

Comments (73)

  • Jim_Eliason's Profile Photo
    Jan 12, 2013 at 12:54 PM

    Great tips!

  • pfsmalo's Profile Photo
    Aug 20, 2012 at 8:18 AM

    I've had a great time going round Dingle, Cloghane and Kinsale with your tips and lovely pics. Shall pop back in to see Cork soon.

    Paul

  • etfromnc's Profile Photo
    Jun 23, 2011 at 5:16 PM

    How are you? It was great meeting you at the EuroMeet, and pre-meets. I hope that you have fully recovered from the difficulties which you encountered in Macedonia and that our paths shall cross again soon.

  • glabah's Profile Photo
    Oct 14, 2010 at 10:33 AM

    Many historic buildings, and a great looking city. Always interesting to see what others have written about their home. In process of adding some Port Townsend material, hope to be done soon.

  • hunterV's Profile Photo
    Jun 8, 2010 at 5:13 AM

    Hello, Katherine! It's a great place to visit! Thanks for your stories!

  • Kuznetsov_Sergey's Profile Photo
    Jan 14, 2010 at 10:00 AM

    Hi, Katherine! I've looked through updates since July 2006. Well done! Happy birthday from snowy and frosty Moscow! Have a lot of interesting trips. Great new avatar photo!

  • SOLODANCER's Profile Photo
    Aug 21, 2009 at 12:06 PM

    K, great pages and your narratives always so memorable. Cork looks like my kind of city and don't blame you for loving Vibes and Scribes twice! I'd do the same and more if when I get there. Thanks.

  • wise23girl's Profile Photo
    Jul 3, 2009 at 3:47 PM

    The Captain of QMary2 was a Northern Ireland man and had an invisible leperachaun companion called Partick O'Sh. who provided words of Irish wisdom every day. Marg

  • pieter_jan_v's Profile Photo
    Mar 7, 2009 at 11:43 PM

    We'll dig into Fred. PJ

  • tiabunna's Profile Photo
    Feb 14, 2009 at 3:32 PM

    Many interesting updates here since my previous visit, Katherine. I rather fancy a visit to the Crawford Gallery if ever I find myself there. An excellent presentation on all counts.

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