Top 10 Things to Do in Cork

A nighttime image of Cork City (courtesy of Unsplash)
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Welcome to Cork, Ireland’s second city and – some would argue – Ireland’s real capital city!! Cork blends its maritime heritage with a more contemporary flair. It’s worth seeing Cork City Gaol, eating lunch at the busy English Market and walking St Patrick’s Street for a bit of shopping. Plus an evening spent in its independent cafes and bars will guarantee you a memorable stay. This guide covers the Top 10 Things to Do in Cork. From the birth of Jameson Whiskey at the Midleton Distillery to a proper Cork Culinary Tour or a walking tour of the city, you’ll find a rich palette of experiences here. If you’re working on your itinerary for Cork, make sure to take the time to enjoy this friendly Irish city.

There’s more than one way to visit Cork on every budget. You can easily combine your choice of pre-booked tickets and tours with free activities such as exploring Fitzgerald’s Park. This guide covers activities you can/must pay to enjoy as well as great free Cork activities.

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Top 10 Things to Do in Cork


Midleton Distillery Tour with JAMESON Whiskey Tasting

75 mins

Irish Whiskey Tour

Home of Jameson & more, includes a tasting & a signature cocktail.

Tickets from €30 pp

Buy this tour

CORK – Guided Historical Walking Tour

75 mins

Walking tour with guide

Visit Cork’s main monuments in one tour

Tickets from €19 pp

Buy this tour

Cork – City Gaol Tour with Audio Guide

75 mins

Self-guided tour

Gaol grounds & perimeter access, plus audio guide

Tickets from €13 pp

Buy this tour

Hop On/Hop Off Cork City Sightseeing Tour

Day ticket (from 9.30am)

Stops at most Cork top attractions

Audio commentary included

Tickets from €22 pp

Buy this tour


3 hours

Foodie guided tour

Many tastings from cheese to seafood, sausage and local breads

Tickets from €130 pp

Buy this tour

Cork Delicious Donut adventure & walking food tour

2 hours

Sweet treat tour!

Baked goods while touring Cork

Tickets from €61.11 pp

Buy this tour

Cork – City Cycle Tour

3 hours

Active way to explore Cork’s streets & parks

Bike, helmet & guide

Tickets from €47 pp

Buy this tour

Cork – Hysterical Histories, Comedic Dinner Theater Show

2 hours

Music & comedy

Includes 2 course meal

Tickets from €52 pp

Buy this tour

Murder Mystery Self-Guided City Exploration Game

Valid: one day

Self-guided way to see Cork & solve a mystery

Good fun for kids or groups of friends (2-6 people)

Tickets from €37.15 per group of 6

Buy this tour

Cork Self-Guided Audio Tour

3 hours

Audio-guided tour (includes map & an app)


Tickets from €12.97 pp

Buy this tour

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Top 3 Free Things to Do in Cork



Open year round

Explore an old-style food market started in 1788

Save your appetite to enjoy some of the treats on offer!

Free to enter



8am to dusk

Cork Public Museum is in the grounds

River Lee views




Shop hours vary

Known as Ireland’s best shopping street.

Great place for people watching


I hope you’ve enjoyed this exploration of some of the top things to do in Cork. Did I miss something out that you enjoyed? Let me know in the comments section.

Cover photo by Yves Alarie on Unsplash.

I'm Patrick, your Irish guide to the skies and beyond. With 58 countries visited, my journeys have taken me from busy economy to fabulous first-class.

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