COBH: A picturesque island situated on the far south of the country is definitely a place to visit. Its refreshing sea breezes, warmed by the Gulf Stream, and friendly atmosphere are natural like the harbour that surrounds it.
Catering for all ages, there is a variety of things to do and places to visit. For the energetic visitor activities such as sailing, wind surfing, rowing and horse riding are available, as is angling for the professional and amateur alike.
East Ferry Marina is an excellent facility for visiting yachts, while students can learn to sail at the International Sailing Centre.
Being the home of Olympic Silver Medalist Sonia O’Sullivan, there are many Sports Clubs to choose from, including Tennis, Football, Athletics and Golf. Nearby Fota Golf Club played host to the Murphy’s Irish Open in 2001 and 2002.
A must for all visitors is the Cobh Heritage Centre which offers a window into Ireland’s past. The beautifully structured St. Colman’s Cathedral with its Gothic Architecture and stained glass windows is well worth a visit while Cobh Museum with its interesting artefacts deals with the history of the Great Island and its surrounding environs.
At Clonmel cemetery known locally as the Old Church Cemetery, 170 victims of the Lusitania, torpedoed in 1915, are buried. There are also many interesting and historic graves, Jack Doyle, Movie Star and Boxer, Nelson’s Drummer boy and Dr. James Roche Verling, Napoleon’s Surgeon on St. Helena, to mention but a few.
Walking tours of Cobh include the Titanic Trial, which takes you through the same buildings and streets that the Titanic passengers and millions of other emigrants walked prior to their departure, and the exciting Ghost Walk of Cobh, which is not for the faint hearted!
For beauty and tranquillity one may visit the Bible Garden, situated in the grounds of the old Admiralty House as well as Fota House, Gardens and Arboretum on nearby Fota Island. For all the family, Fota Wildlife Park is a must.
With over 300 species of Birds, East Cork is home to some of the most famous birdwatching sites in Europe.
For the more artistic and creative the Sirius Art Centre and Cobh Library house many exhibitions throughout the year while the Philip Gray Art Gallery in Rushbrooke Commercial Park is a must see.