Gougane Barra, West Cork in Ireland

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The harbour town of Cork is a great destination for a short break or family holiday. Located in the province of Munster in southern Ireland, it has a number of great attractions for all the family and makes an excellent base for exploring the south of Ireland by car.

Why go?

Southern Ireland is renowned for its magnificent landscapes and historical towns with stunning architecture and you will want to see it all...

Getting to Cork is easy, with flights available to Cork International Airport (ORK) from across the UK or via Dublin Airport (DUB). The best way to get around on a holiday whilst sticking to your own itinerary is to look into car hire in Cork. Cork car hire is available from the airport, allowing you to set out on your holiday immediately.

Blarney Castle and its famous stone are within easy reach for day trips and in the evening you can enjoy Cork's hospitality in any one of the many pubs or restaurants.

Most travellers usually go out of their way to avoid the local prison when on holiday but Cork City Goal is well worth a visit. This stunning heritage centre is open seven days a week. The Butter Museum is also a popular attraction, located in the Shandon area of the city and you could also take a look at the nearby Church of St Anne's overlooking the River Lee. If churches are of interest to you, then St Fin Barre's Cathedral is also worth a visit.

Thirsty visitors may be interested in the twice-weekly tours held in the Beamish Brewery. Check the website for dates and times.
Cork is full of culture and has an impressive literary history. Don't miss the amazing Crawford Art Gallery and also the stunning Opera House.

Where to explore?

Heading out of the city you can make the most of your hire car by exploring the southern counties of Ireland...

County Wexford and County Kerry are both within driving distance. Both have great sandy beaches, plenty of places to eat and drink and, of course, sights to see.

Wexford is packed with history from Viking times and you can follow the Wexford Heritage Trail to discover the culture and history. You'll also find the world's oldest lighthouse and the Irish Agricultural Museum.

In Kerry you can drive to Dingle and take in the fantastic views on the Ring of Kerry drive or spot dolphins out at sea. Visit Ireland's highest mountain, Carrauntuohil, and Muckross House and National Park before taking in some traditional evening entertainment in the many pubs.