Cork – In the Heart of Southern Ireland
Located in southern Ireland, Cork city and the stunning County Cork countryside offer culture, gastronomy, fascinating history, rural retreats and salty sea air.
Cork has all the ingredients for a first-class incentive, rewards or team-building programme, guaranteed to be full of memorable experiences.
Explore Cork City and Kiss the Blarney Stone
Morning: Fly to Cork airport. You’ll be met by one of our experienced tour directors who will transfer you into Cork city centre. You’ll enjoy a 90-minute guided walking tour around the compact 800-year-old city. You’ll experience the smells and sounds of the English Market, dating from 1786, stroll the busy lanes of the 18th century Huguenot Quarter and wonder at Burges’s magnificent French Neo-Gothic cathedral.
Afternoon: We’ll stop for a light lunch before rejoining our coach to travel the short distance to Cork City Gaol. This castle-like building once housed 19th century prisoners. You’ll get a fascinating insight into day-to-day prison life and see one of the finest examples of Ireland’s architectural heritage.
We then head to Blarney Castle where some kissing is required. For more than 200 years, visitors have climbed the steps to kiss the famous Blarney Stone, and in so doing, gain the gift of eloquence. Does it work? You’ll have to give it a go. We travel on to our hotel with time to relax before dinner.
Evening: After a busy day, enjoy a sumptuous four-course dinner at the hotel.
Titanic Experience Cobh, Cork Harbour Sa Safari and Jameson Experience
Morning: There’s a nautical theme to today’s activities. We travel by executive coach or people carrier to the town of Cobh. Located within Cork’s extensive harbour, Cobh is best known as the final port of call for the Titanic on her ill-fated maiden voyage. We’ll visit the Titanic Experience Cobh, located in the original White Star Line Ticket Office. You’ll be given a ticket bearing the name of one of the passengers who travelled on that voyage. There’s a 30-minute guided tour during which you’ll experience life aboard ship, learn a little about the conditions on board for third and first-class passengers, and experience the chill of the sinking through a unique cinematographic experience. After the tour you’ll be free to explore the exhibition area. You’ll also discover the fate of the passenger named on your ticket.
After Titanic we head to the quayside to join a RIB craft for a Sea Safari exploring more of Cork Harbour. At around 22km in length, it’s one of the finest natural, protected harbours in the world, meaning generally calm waters whatever the weather. You’ll be kitted out with waterproof clothing and then we head off to explore the harbour. We’ll spend around 45 minutes on the water before we arrive at Crosshaven, a picturesque, traditional and historical village, situated near the southern end of the harbour. You’ll have time to look around and have some lunch.
Afternoon: After lunch we rejoin the boat to discover more of the harbour, stopping for another refreshment break on the way. We end our sea safari in Cork City, joining our coach to travel the 30 minutes or so to the village of Midleton, the home of the famous Jameson Distillery and the Jameson Experience. The award-winning Jameson Heritage Centre is a lovingly restored 18th century distillery. Your visit will take you through the story of Irish whiskey, following the old distillery trail through mills, maltings, corn stores, stillhouse, warehouses and kilns. You’ll also see the ‘largest pot in the world’ before sampling the renowned Jameson Whiskey in the bar.
You’ll return to your hotel in time to relax before dinner.
Evening: For our final evening in Ireland you’ll enjoy the best of Irish food and entertainment at a traditional Irish night.
[The Oliver Plunkett in Cork City, or bring in some musicians and dancers to the hotel]
Free Time in Cork
Morning: There’s free time in Cork City this morning for buying traditional Irish souvenirs, or simply enjoying the ‘craic’ in one of the traditional cafes.
Afternoon: You’ll transfer to Cork Airport for the flight home.
Blarney Hotel, Golf and Spa Resort ****
Set among 170 acres of beautiful wooded Shournagh valley, and close to the historic town of Blarney, Blarney Castle and the famous Blarney Stone.