The more we travel the more I realize I prefer smaller cities, towns and villages. Big cities are hard to ‘get to know’ in a few days. But then the older I get, I like the conveniences of a big city and being able to just walk to somewhere to get anything I’d want or need. So we always mix them up, so we get the laid-back vibe of smaller villages and also the energy of big cities. Unlike cities that has monuments and big landmarks, Cork is a city that you just have to experience, walk around, wander, and pretend you’re part of the daily hustle and bustle, even for just a few days. It was October when we were in Cork, so it was drizzly most of the time. You just have to be prepared for an Ireland weather. Most people don’t even take their umbrellas out when its drizzling. A rain jacket with a hood is a must if you go this time of the year (or maybe most of the year). Don’t let the rain stop you from enjoying the city.
Here are some things to do in Cork:
- Walk the pedestrian street, Oliver Plunkett St.
2. Visit the English Market
3. Walk the streets flanked by the main River Lee and its smaller artery, through the main shopping St Patrick’s St, and the pedestrian street Oliver Plunkett towards St Fin Barr Cathedral
4. Visit St Fin Barr Cathedral, a pretty impressive neo Gothic Church of Ireland
5. Go up St Patrick’s Hill. Follow St Patrick’s St away from the shopping area, cross the river and continue up the hill. There are a bunch of stairs into a quieter residential area where St Patrick’s St becomes Audley Pl. At the end of the road, there’s a park with a beautiful view of the city.
6. Get your morning coffee and people watch at a Cork Coffee Roasters.
7. Dine at 51 Cornmarket. Amazing food with the nicest owner, using fresh local ingredients. It was our wedding anniversary, rainy and cold, and we were looking for a nice restaurant for dinner, a place that looks more personal and warm. 51 Cornmarket was just the place but when we went it, there were no tables available. We were bummed but after we had walked several meters away looking for another place, the owner came running after us and told us a table had just canceled and asked if we still wanted to go. That was the nicest thing from a restaurant owner I had ever experienced, considering it was cold and rainy and this restaurant is so highly rated they could’ve easily gotten another customer but she came out and ran after us! The Cornmarket area seem to be an up and coming trendy place in the city.
8. Do some shopping (or window shopping) along St Parick’s St.
9. Do some pub/bar hopping (duh, you’re in Ireland).
10. Go for a drive to the nearby colorful towns Cobh and Kinsale.
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