Short breaks in Cork

Enjoy an enchanting short break on the Emerald Isle

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Helen Twigg

Helen Twigg
HomeAway travel expert

CorkOnce a small island on the swampy banks of the River Lee, the Republic of Ireland’s second city, Cork, has since grown into a bustling metropolis. The city’s international character and status, as a thriving centre of culture and the arts, was underlined in 2005 with its being awarded the accolade of European Capital of Culture.
Create your perfect home-from-setting in a HomeAway rental in Cork, and you can spend your days meandering through the city’s watery channels or marvelling at its inspiring monuments. Experience Cork's unique buzz, typified by the locals' quick fire wit, or be inspired by rolling greenery and rocky plateaus that make this part of Ireland truly unique.


Top five destinations in Cork


Squares and Quarters Squares and Quarters

Wander by the glistening waters of the River Lee, and into Lough Park for an idyllic late afternoon stroll. Afterwarda, enter Fitzgeralds Park to experience a quaint pocket of the city; it's perfect for nature lovers and those seeking to escape from the bustle of the centre. 

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Places of interest Places of interest

Cork’s rich heritage is underlined by its patron Saint, St. Finbarre, who founded the city’s monastery 1,400 years ago. The best way to explore this hilly southern seaport is on foot, with a Cork walking tour providing the perfect opportunity to marvel at the city’s inspiring historical landmarks. Wonder at the imposing St. Finbarre’s Cathedral, and visit the Tudor-Gothic University College to while away your afternoon relaxing beside its tranquil riverside quadrangle. Cap off your walking tour by venturing to the hilltop Shandon Church, and enjoy ringing the church bells overlooking awe-inspiring views of the city’s skyline as the sun sets.

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Shopping Shopping

Cork’s cosmopolitan vibrancy is reflected in its wide range of outlets; from high-end retailers to bustling markets and independent boutiques. Running through the heart of the city, St. Patrick’s Street offers a wealth of more familiar shopping options, whilst nearby Oliver Plunkett Street is abuzz with independent clothing outlets and second-hand bookshops, lining quaint alleyways and lanes nestled off the main road. For authentic Irish gifts, visit the Coral Quay for its lively Saturday open-air market, and enjoy the odd barter or two with the welcoming traders.

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Wining and dining Wining and dining

Cork prides itself on its infamous pub culture, live music scene, the buzz of Barrack Street, and of course, the local’s craic. Visitors can expect to enjoy culinary delights within the English Market, which boasts delightful local produce and tantalising international delicacies with piano playing providing a wonderful backdrop to your meal. For something a little more authentic, indulge in a traditional Irish meal at the Ivory Tower, or enjoy the colourful ambience of the Quay CoOp, a popular destination with locals.

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Beyond the city Beyond the city

As a city lying within Ireland’s largest county, it’s little surprise that Cork’s surrounding landscapes are some of the most stunning throughout the peninsular. From rugged coves and bays to rolling green pastures, take in the spectacular Co. Cork scenery with a walk through Fota Wildlife Park and Donaraile Park. Alternatively, venture to the picturesque Blarney Castle, and kiss the infamous Blarney Stone to uncover ‘the gift of the gab’!

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Holiday Rentals

Castletownbere, Co. Cork. Sleeps 5

Outside: Detached bungalow on the slopes of Hungry Hill (2252 ft) with magnificent southerly views of Bere Island and across Bantry Bay to the Sheep's Head peninsular. It is situated in a secluded location at the end of quiet country road about 4 ...

Trafask, Adrigole, Co. Cork. Sleeps 6 + Cot

Outside: Detached stone faced bungalow in exceptional location, quiet and secluded at the end of the road and right beside the sea and small sandy/pebble beach. It enjoys stunning views over Bantry Bay and a small bay, which has a quay and slipway...

Ardgroom, Co. Cork. Sleeps 4 + Cot

Outside: Newly renovated traditional stone cottage, quiet and secluded, at the foot of the Slieve Miskish Mountains with views of Kenmare River to the Macgillycuddy Reeks and Caha Mountains. Ardgroom straddles both the Ring of Beara walking and cy...

Adrigole, Co. Cork. Sleeps 7 + Cot

Outside: Detached stone front house, facing south, at the foot of the Caha Mountains and enjoying magnificent outlook across Bantry Bay to the Sheep’s Head Peninsular. It is superbly situated in quiet and seclusion about 150 yrds from the sea and...

Laharn, Baltimore, Co. Cork. Sleeps 5

Outside: Detached cottage, in large garden, quiet and secluded, yet only about ½ mile from the popular little fishing village of Baltimore and within easy walking distance of the sea and small cove and hotel/restaurant. Baltimore has choice of exc...

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