48 hours in Cork – Our 2 Day Itinerary for Cork City & Beyond
Filled with compelling history, stunning art work and some of best restaurants & bars in the country, a weekend away to Cork is a perfect option for a staycation this summer. We have selected some of our favourite things to do & see around the city for 2 days, with a little help from our Concierge, John Coleman.
DAY 1 – EXPLORE THE CITY
THE ENGLISH MARKET
No trip to Cork is complete without a visit to the famous English Market, the oldest covered market in Europe, and is a great way to start off your day in Cork! Found in the heart of the city, the market best known for showcasing the best of what Cork have to offer with artisan bakeries, speciality butchers, gourmet cheese mongers and so much more! There are also some delightful small boutiques there to pick yourself up something special. If you are visiting, make sure you stop at the Toonsbridge Dairy Shop to pick up some of their fab cheeses & gorgeous home-made cannolis! The market is open Monday – Saturday from 8am-6pm so rise and shine early to make the most of the rest of the day. (Please check times before your visit as these may change depending on current guidelines and restrictions).
NANO NAGLE PLACE
From the English Market, discover a one-of-a-kind heritage museum Nano Nagle Place, a tranquil haven in the heart of Cork City. Learn about Nano Nagle’s life and how she influenced education in Ireland and around the world. Make time for the heritage tour, a stroll through the lovely gardens, a visit to the incredible bookshop and crafts shop on site, where you can pick up some lovely and unique pieces of art, or gifts, all made locally and sustainably in Ireland. Also, don’t forget a stop at the delicious Good Day Deli. Nano Nagle Place is located on Douglas Street, a 5-minute walk away from Patrick Street.
ELIZABETH FORT AND SAINT FIN BARRE’S CATHEDRAL
From Nano Nagle Place, take a 5-minute walk over to Elizabeth Fort, that dates back to the 17th century and played a huge role in Cork City’s history. You will also get a fantastic view of the city from here!
Just a short walk from here, you will find Saint Fin Barre’s Cathedral, a gothic style church which is dedicated to the patron saint of Cork, St. Fin Barre.
FITZGERALD’S PARK & THE SHAKEY BRIDGE
If you want to rest up for a bit, take a stroll down to Fitzgerald Park, where visitors and locals alike can enjoy a riverside picnic or coffee on the banks of the River Lee. Located along Mardyke Walk, the Cork Public Museum and Sky Garden, Natural Foods Café, a waterlily filled pond and a range of sculptures, are all situated in the park. When you’re finished, head over to Cork’s much loved ‘Shakey Bridge’ which is the only pedestrian suspension bridge of its kind in Ireland!
Located 20 minutes away from Cork City, Blarney Castle attracts visitors from all over the world every year to kiss the mythical Stone of Eloquence on top of the castle. Spending an afternoon at the castle is well worth the trip, though for those of you who would like to explore every trail in the park, you may need more than just an afternoon as there is more within the grounds than just the famous stone. Blarney Castle hosts a number of stunning gardens and several rock formations for you to explore. While you’re there, pop into Blarney Woollen Mills for stunning hand-made gifts and a coffee!
DAY 2 – CORK’S HARBOUR ISLANDS AND BEYOND
THE HERITAGE TOWN OF COBH
The picturesque seafront town of Cobh is a lovely way to spend a few hours on a sunny day. As you stand in the shadow of St Colman’s Cathedral, one of Ireland’s tallest towers, grab a coffee in one of the many cafés on the waterfront and watch ships pass by. Cobh is easily accessible by train and the station is ideally located just 5 minutes walk from our hotel.
From here you can visit the Cobh Heritage Centre, which is housed in a beautifully renovated Victorian railway station, to learn about the towns past, including the Irish Emigration story, the Titanic, and even to trace your ancestors! Cobh is also a great base to visit a number of different sights & attractions.
With a history of being the world’s largest prison, discover 1300 years of Irish history at Spike Island. Spike Island, is only a 15-minute ferry ride from the town of Cobh and has a mysterious and fascinating history. There are a number of museums and exhibitions on the island dedicated to its history, as well as breath-taking views from the ‘Ring of Spike,’ and a 5km walking path.Our advice; book your ferry & tickets in advance as it proves to be a massive hit with tourists & locals alike!
FOTA WILDLIFE PARK
If boat trips and ghost stories aren’t your thing, maybe give Spike Island a miss and instead visit Fota Wildlife Park for some furry fun! Known for being one of Cork’s top destinations for first dates, the park is not just for families and is a great way to spend an afternoon. Easily accessible from the city by car – and also on the Cobh train route, spend your time getting to see animals from all over the world up close. When you’re finished head over to Fota House and visit its stunning Arboretum and Gardens for a relaxing & tranquil walk, which hosts a collection of rare & exotic trees.
An extra night
JAMESON WHISKEY DISTILLERY
If we can tempt you to stay an extra night, The Jameson Distillery in Midleton is consistently ranked as one of the best things to do in Cork and it’s not hard to see why. Providing a world-class experience for those seeking a whiskey wonderland, tours are conducted by Jameson Brand Ambassadors and include a deep dive into the history of Jameson, an incredible sensory room, masterclass in whiskey tasting and a complimentary drink at the bar! It is an ideal way to spend an afternoon while on your trip to Cork and is often cited as the highlight of trips from whiskey lovers & foodies. You may not be able to squeeze it in during your Summer city break, so why not book your return trip this Sutumn and treat yourself to a little luxury with our inclusive Jameson Whiskey Experience Package.