I have been to Cobh (Cork) 3 times, all on Independence of the Seas. It still amazes me, even though I have been before. There is so much to see and do. I haven’t seen everything yet! The next few paragraphs will tell you more about the History, Information and things to see, so you can make the most of your visit in this beautiful port of call.
Information and History…
Cork is the second largest metropolitan area in the Republic of Ireland. County Cork is the largest county in Ireland. Cork is situated on the south-west coast of Ireland. It is often rated as one of the best natural harbours in Europe. Cork has a population of 175,000 and its name comes from the Irish word ‘Corcaigh’, meaning ‘Marsh’. Because of its origin as islets in a marsh, Cork is a city of bridges and the main streets and roads of modern Cork were once waterways, navigable by cargo ships.
St. Finbarr founded the first town in the area in the 7th century and established a monastery, church and school. In 821, 846 and 1012 Norsemen raided and burned Cork. It is said that the world’s first yacht club was founded at Cork harbour in 1720. By 1761, the city had its first piped water system installed, using wooded pipes. In the 18th and 19th centuries, butter started to be produced and exported, glass manufacturing booming and vast numbers of cattle slaughtered and salted for export. It was also used by the British Navy and other ships sailing into Cork and Cobh to provision. This can still be seen today, as there is a naval base opposite where the cruise ship docks. In 1912, the ‘unsinkable’ Titanic docked in Cobh, on its tragic maiden voyage. Cobh became the ships last port it ever visited. There is loving memorial located on the waterfront in Cobh, to pay tribute to the lost souls.
Top Things to see…
In Cobh, I would recommend you visit the Queenstown Story – a dramatic exhibition of the history of Cobh. It is located just opposite the dock and occupies an unused section of the railway station. A trip to Ireland is not complete without having a Guinness! So make sure you try one in many of the different bars and cafes located in Cobh and Cork. Another sight to visit is the gothic minster, located high above the town below.
Beyond Cobh, I would recommend you take an excursion to Blarney Castle. It is located around 5 miles from Cork and is one of the oldest and most historic castles in Ireland. The famous Blarney Stone is embedded in the parapets of the castle and is supposed to bestow the gift of eloquence on anyone who kisses it!
Good and Bad Points…
- Beautiful scenery
- Quaint waterfront
- Great shopping opportunities
- Lots of steps or steep paths to get around Cobh
Cobh is a wonderful place. If you take a cruise to here, make sure you plan ahead as there is a lot to do and see. When I have been to Cork, Independence usually docks in Cork for two days. This gives you the right amount of time to explore the sights and shops. Cork is excellent for those who want to shop, but Cobh is perfect for those who want to experience the true Irish vibe.