Cork: Sophisticated, Vibrant and Diverse
Fireworks light up the night sky over Cork to welcome in the 2005 European City of Culture.
The City has entered the 21st Century assuming the mantle of a modern, vibrant and progressive urban centre, a status underlined by the designation of Cork as European Capital of Culture in 2005.
Building from the successful Capital of Culture Year, the City Council has continued to develop the City through substantial development in the public realm and through the active support of culture and the arts. This commitment has been matched by private sector investment in the hotel, retail and hospitality sectors, increasing the capacity and appeal of the city for visitors.
Irish Dancers take to the streets for the Annual Céilí Mór, part of the
The Harbour hosts a colourful flotilla each year for the Ocean to City Race
At the close of 2009 the City’s international appeal was again recognized by the selection of Cork by leading Travel Guidebook, Lonely Planet, as one of the Top Ten cities in the world to visit in 2010 –“Lonely Planet’s Best in Travel 2010”
“With a population of the Cork Metropolitan Area of four hundred thousand people and a huge investment into infrastructure Cork now has one million square feet of retail space in an easily accessible city centre. Cork also has some of the best restaurants in Ireland or England so this vote is not really a surprise to the people of Cork,” say Lonely Planet. “Sophisticated, vibrant and diverse while still retaining its friendliness, relaxed charm and quickfire wit, Cork buzzes with the energy of a city that’s certain of its place in Ireland.”
Cork City is a Regional Capital, at the centre of an area of outstanding natural beauty and Ireland's premier tourism region. The City Council, working with Cork County Council and other agencies have come together to form the Cork Marketing Partnership “to undertake Cork promotional initiatives, develop and promote business tourism and assist in promoting economic development in the Cork region”. Further details of these initiatives and the work of the Partnership are available at www.cometocork.ie.
Among the numerous individual tourist and heritage attractions in the area include:
Tel: +353 (0) 21 4255100
Fax: +353 (0) 21 4255199
For tourist information see www.discoverireland.ie
For information on Fáilte Ireland and the support they provide to the tourism industry see www.failteireland.ie
Getting to Cork has never been easier as the transport links to the City have all benefited greatly in recent years from substantial investment.
The road network serving the City allows easy access to the City and Park and Ride facilities enable the visitor to park at the outskirts and to avail of a good-value, high quality bus service to the Centre.
A total of 2,250 car parking spaces are available in the City, both on-street and in multi-storey parks.
A €100 million new terminal was opened at Cork Airport in 2004 to serve an expanded domestic and international flight schedule. Airport information and flight details and schedules are available at www.corkairport.com
Kent Station serves commuter, regional and national rail traffic and provides convenient access to Cork being just minutes walk from the Centre. Timetables and other details available at www.irishrail.ie
The city’s Central Bus Terminus is ideally located at Parnell Place in the heart of the city. Timetables available at www.buseireann.ie
A direct seasonal ferry service to Cork will be available from mainland Britain, through Swansea, from March 2010 - www.fastnetline.com, and is available from mainland Europe, through Roscoff - www.brittanyferries.ie
Land-bridge options are also available from a number of Ferry Operators.
Full details (and live availability updates) of the multi-storey parks are available at parking.corkcity.ie
Cork has long held huge commitment and passion for music, the arts, sport, learning, culture and heritage. And whilst we do not profess to be unique in this regard, the City has set itself apart by showcasing this commitment and passion through the continued successful staging of a broad program of festivals.
A scene from the St. Patrick's Day Parade
The City Council has been proud to support the various Festivals, not only as a means of endorsing the commitment of the organizations and individuals involved, but as a way of rightfully placing the City on a national and international stage.
A singer at the Cork Choral Festival
Cork now proudly proclaims itself as Ireland's Festival Capital.
The various Festivals staged in the City will appeal to a broad range of interests, and a single web-site (http://www.corkfestivalsforum.com/) is operating to provide a single platform to link to the individual web-sites of the main festivals.
Blackrock Castle Observatory is a 16th century castle located about 2km from the heart of Cork city on the banks of the river Lee. At the castle you will find: Cosmos at the Castle, Ireland's first interactive science exhibit, BCO Labs, with researchers from CIT, The Castle Bar & Trattoria, First Quarter moon viewings where you are invited to learn how telescopes work and see the moon up close. Hands-on workshops exploring different themes in science and engineering, Discover Primary Science program.