Corkonians are fiercely proud of their hometown, so much so that it’s jokingly referred to as the People’s Republic of Cork. And there is a lot to love about Ireland’s second city. Hugging the banks of the River Lee, it takes its name from corcaigh, the Gaelic word for "marshy." With its origins in the 7th century, Cork enjoyed a flourishing period as a merchant center in the 18th and 19th centuries, with grand buildings like the elegant Cork City Hall bearing testimony to this status. On the north bank of the River Lee is the quaint neighborhood of Shandon with its landmark clock tower of St. Anne’s Church. The city’s heart is set on an island sandwiched between two channels of the Lee that open out into one of Europe's largest natural harbors at Cobh.
Cobh brought the city prosperity (and also happened to be the final port of call for the ill-fated RMS Titanic). And it was from Cobh that over 2.5 million immigrants caught their final glimpse of their home country as they departed in search of a better life in the United States between 1848 and 1950.
There’s a more modern side to Cork, with a thriving university quarter, pubs, bars and restaurants. Whatever your interests, you will find a side of Cork to love too.