County Cork is located within the province of Munster in southern Ireland. Cork is a popular destination with many visitors that travel both near and far to discover the beauty of Cork. With many hidden gems only waiting to be discovered, a visit to Cork is a must. The following article takes a look at just 10 interesting facts that you never knew about Cork.
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1. County Cork is the largest County in Ireland, and Cork City is Ireland’s third largest city after Dublin and Belfast. The area of Cork City is 3,731 hectares. County Cork covers an area of 7,459 square kilometres or 2,880 square miles, which is 11% of the Irish State.
2. Saint Finbarr is the founder and Patron Saint of Cork City. It was he who followed the River Lee from it’s beginning in Gougane Barra to Cork City where he founded a monastery in the 7th Century where Saint Finbarrs Cathedral now stands.
3. The population of Cork is 480,909, this was taken from the 2006 census.
4. Cork is known as the “Rebel County” due to the high level of rebel activity in the county during the War of Independence and the subsequent Civil War.
5. The Irish or Gaelic name for Cork is ‘Corcaigh’ meaning ‘a marsh’. Cork City began on an island in the swampy estuary of the River Lee.
6. The county of Cork has two ‘Gaeltacht areas’ where Irish, or Gaelic, is still the spoken language and where Ireland’s cultural, social, and linguistic traditions are very much maintained. Along the banks of the River Lee lies ‘Gaeltacht Mhúscraí’, and just off the coast of West Cork lies ‘Oileán Chléire’ or Cape Clear Island as it is also known.
7. There are many tourist attractions in Cork and one of the most popular is Blarney Castle, here you will get an opportunity to ‘Kiss The Blarney Stone’ – when you kiss the Blarney Stone it is said you will get the ‘Gift of The Gab’ meaning you will speak in a persuasive and interesting way!
8. Did you know that Cork invented steeplechasing? Yes, steeplechasing was born in 1752 when a member of the Duhallow Hunt Club challenged his neighbour to race from the church steeple at Buttevant to the church steeple at Doneraile. This tradition continues today, but with alot more at stake than ever!
9. Fota Island is one of the three bigger islands in Cork harbour and is a wildlife reserve and wildlife park with an arboretum contain rare species of trees and shrubs. Fota Wildlife Park has over 70 species of exotic wildlife that includes giraffes, zebras, ostrich and much more that roam together in 40 acres of grassland.
10. Cork Harbour is said to be the second largest harbour in the world, after Sydney Harbour in Australia. The motto on the coat of arms of Cork City is ‘Statio Bene Fide Carinis’ which means ‘A Safe Harbour for Ships’.
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Do you know of other interesting facts you would like to add to this list? Please feel free to leave a comment in the comment box below. Thank you.