Ah spring! Long time, no see! It’s been a while! Is there really any better time of year than spring? Seeing the evenings getting longer, hearing the birds singing again and watching the daffodils dancing in the breeze-it’s almost enough to inspire a poem that Wordsworth himself would be proud of. Alas, you are stuck with me and my humble blogging with some of my favourite things to do this spring in our favourite city of Cork, all from our little oasis of calm that is Hotel Isaacs in the heart of Cork City’s Victorian Quarter.
Fitzgerald’s Park and the Lee Fields:
Spring time walks are the best. After months of being cooped up inside with night starting at 5pm, is there anything quite as refreshing as an evening walk through the picturesque grounds of Fitzgerald’s Park, knowing that you can dip into the Cork Public Museum should a shower threaten to put a dampener on your spirits? Feeling extra energetic? Why not extend your walk along the river down through the Lee Fields? Head back to our award-winning Greenes Restaurant for a delicious meal where our residents can avail of a 15% food discount.
Ireland’s biggest festival is fast approaching and for many, marks the start of the holiday season with the fun and exhilarating St Patrick’s Day Festival from March 13th-17th. Expect plenty of fun, green beer, a show-stopping parade, endless music sessions, food markets and did I mention green, shamrocks and maybe even some leprechauns? Movie buffs will love the French Film Festival in early March while writers will be sure to appreciate the Spring Poetry Festival and of course, let’s not forget the Choral Festival coming up the end of April.
Arguably one of Ireland’s prettiest towns, the charming fishing town of Kinsale is located a leisurely 40 minute drive from our boutique hotel in Cork, making it one of the most accessible places to explore this spring. Choose from a tour of one of the town’s historic star forts: Charlesfort and Jamesfort or simply select one of the beautiful coastal walks (my personal favourite is the Scily Walk connecting the town with Charlesfort) to admire views of the harbour. Deemed the gourmet capital of Ireland, you won’t go hungry with an astounding variety of places to eat and drink. Return to the city and raise a toast to spring in our very own Cask Cocktail Bar complete with heated courtyard.
Yes, you’ve all heard of Blarney but it would be a crime not to include Blackrock Castle on your Cork itinerary. Dating back to 1582, this castle has a rich and varied history with regular guided tours but most interestingly, an interactive science exhibit and a planetarium. The guides are possibly the most enthusiastic you’ll meet on your trip to Ireland, you’ll discover what time of the month is best to see Mars as well as having views of some of the main landmarks in Cork harbour. A walk along the harbour is a must afterwards.
Ireland is not renowned for its great weather and even our spring days can bring an unexpected rain shower or some chilling breezes. A safe bet in all weathers is undoubtedly the port town of Cobh, boasting the second largest natural harbour in the world along with enough history to write a few history books. Cobh was the final port of call for the doomed Titanic and a trip to the Titanic Experience will provide you with an eerie insight into the lives of the 123 passengers that boarded the ill-fated liner from Cobh. For those with an interest in genealogy, the Queenstown Story looks at the history of emigration from the town and has its own resident genealogist on site to help you trace your roots.
Author Bio: Katie Corcoran is a daytime writer for Isaacs Hotel Cork, an Irish boutique city hotel perfect for travellers who want to explore Cork City’s Victorian quarter and its award-winning restaurants and bars.