Information and Tourism
County Cork is a largely rural area that seems to incorporate every possible kind of landscape. It is easy to get carried away exploring its mountain ranges, its rivers and lush valleys, and its sea loughs (lochs). And that is all before you've made a start on its beaches and dramatic cliffs. At the heart of life in this Irish county is the city of Cork, which is starting to rival fair Dublin itself. Tourists flock here in search of something different, from the city's quirky streets to the cultural vibes that give Cork a real buzz nowadays.
Of course, for most visitors to County Cork, there is only one place to start an Irish adventure - a visit to a certain stone attached precariously to the side of a castle. The famous Blarney Stone is a bluestone block that forms part of Blarney Castle's battlements. The legend goes that whosoever kisses the Blarney Stone will acquire the 'gift of the gab'. In other words, you will suddenly be able to talk with remarkable eloquence. Millions of people have come to give it a go, including some rather famous celebrities.
The sea plays a huge part in County Cork life. On summer days, large cruise liners weigh anchor in the port of Cobh, discharging their passengers for day trips to explore the local area and beyond. The most famous ship to dock in Cobh was the RMS Titanic, which stopped here to pick up its last batch of passengers before embarking on its ill-fated voyage across the Atlantic in 1912. In the past, Cobh has offered millions of people their final glimpse of their Irish homeland, as emigrants have left here in search of a better life in America.
County Cork Information and Fast Facts
- Country: Republic of Ireland
- Province: Munster
- Population: approximately 550,000
- County administrative town or city: Cork
- Language: English and Irish (Gaelic)
- Number of Irish-language speakers: 14,800
- Area: 2,900 square miles / 7,510 square kilometres
- Length of coastline: 680 miles / 1,094 kilometres
Map of Ireland