The Port of Cork is located in the south west of Ireland in the beautiful city of Cork. This natural sheltered and deep water harbour which lies at the mouth of the River Lee, claims to be the 2nd largest natural harbour in the world. The harbour is now a world class facility welcoming a wide range of cruise liners and it’s also a hive of marine, industrial and recreational activity. Read on to find out more.
Known in ancient times as ‘Beallach Coullach’ which translates as ‘way of the tribes’, Cork Harbour has always been an important point for international trade. Throughout its years the Port of Cork has seen its fair share of obstacles such as famine, emigration and disease. The Harbour Commissioners organisation was set up in 1820 but it was in the 1920′s that this organisation set about industrial development in the port area.
Today the Cork harbour is a hive of activity. The harbour incorporates the towns of Passage West, Monkstown and Ringaskiddy in the lower harbour area and some of the city suburbs such as Blackrock, Mahon, Douglas, Passage West and Rochestown in the upper harbour. Port facilities are located at the City Quays, Ringnaskiddy, Tivoli and Cobh.
The Cork port area, is a hub of major industrial activity and has quite a significant amount of pharmaceutical companies. It’s also a major recreational area with the Royal Cork Yacht Club based here – it was founded in 1720 and claims to be the oldest yacht club in the world. Activities such as windsurfing, jet-sking and canoeing are also popular recreational activities in the harbour.
The Port of Cork is also a destination for many luxurious cruise liners which mostly berth at Cobh. Cobh is a colourful harbour town located just 24km south of Cork city. Here passengers can disembark and visit top attractions like Fota Wildlife Park, Cobh Heritage Centre and St. Colman’s Cathedral. It’s also a great base from which to enjoy a day trip to popular tourist destinations in the south west like Blarney, Killarney, Kinsale and west Cork.
The Port of Cork is a great stop-off for many visitors who want to explore their Irish ancestry as over a period of 150 years, upto 2.5 million people emmigrated from the Port of Cork to set up better lives for themselves abroad.
What better way to access the beautiful west of Ireland than by ferry. Brittany Ferries operate between Roscoff and Ringnaskiddy while the Swansea-Cork Ferry service will be back in action for March 2010. If you’re thinking of visiting Cork by ferry next year and need accommodation, then have a look at our Cork hotels page.