Cork is situated on an estuary that opens onto the Atlantic Ocean. The Republic of Ireland's second largest city has been likened to Dublin without the traffic. it is crammed with cosy pubs and cultural attractions, and is a charming and popular city to add to the itinerary.
There is a great rivalry between Cork and Dublin, and the majority of Cork's residents see themselves as distinctly different from the rest of Ireland. Cork is vibrant and cheerful, with music, theatre and film all playing a major role in city life. World-renowned annual festivals add to the lively atmosphere, and in 2005 it was named the European Capital of Culture.
Cork is also the gastronomic capital of Ireland, with the widest variety of top-class restaurants in the country. Nearby Kinsale, also known for its host of award-winning pubs and restaurants, hosts the annual Gourmet Festival.
County Cork is located in the southwest, and it is the largest county in Ireland. It's noted for its maritime identity and impressive coastal scenery as well as being the site of Ireland's most famous attraction, the Blarney Stone. The city is a major seaport and is built around the waterways of the River Lee, connected by numerous bridges. Cork harbour is one of the largest natural harbours in the world.