Pop the Cork0
Ireland is beloved, an enchanting land and a perfect holiday destination for one and all around the world. March and April is one of the best times to visit the emerald isles, us at Les Routiers want to cherry pick some of the best events and festivals to visit over the next coming months.
Cork County is the largest County in Ireland and it offers visitors a wonderful selection of landscapes. From sandy beaches, rugged coastlines, to peaceful lakes, striking mountains and quiet countryside, you will be sure to find it here. Cork City as well as the towns and villages of the County are vibrant, lively places where they provide visitors with great museums, beautiful heritage buildings, and historical trails. Cork’s islands will offer visitor’s peace and quiet, the chance to experience a more relaxed pace.
One of the most important dates in the Irish diary is of course St Patricks day! What better way to spend it than in Cork. On the 17th March Cork boasts a host of great parades, festivals and events taking place this weekend so you have no excuse for not getting out and about.
Join festival goers for three days of free family fun on the streets of Cork as the city bursts into life with this year’s Cork St. Patrick’s Festival. Sample some tasty treats at the Barry’s Tea Market as you kick-back and enjoy live music on the streets while walking through circus walkabouts or watching the comedy antics of the festival’s street entertainers. The Parade starts at 1pm and will be filled with spectacular performances including arts, community, sporting groups from all over the city and county, along with five specially commissioned pieces, created by renowned street theatre companies. The Parade route runs from the South Mall to the Grand Parade, along St. Patrick’s Street and finishes at Merchant’s Quay.
The festivities don’t end there, because from the 30th of April until 4th of May, the Cork International Choral Festival will be commencing. Founded in 1954 to be a dynamic force in developing choral music in Ireland, the Cork International Choral Festival is held annually over the five days preceding the first Monday in May. Cork welcomes choirs from across the world for a programme of Gala concerts, Schools Concerts, National and International Competitions, world-class performances, as thousands of participants bring the city to life for a celebration of choral music in all its many forms. The Festival continues to ensure that choral music, representative of many historical and cultural traditions, is brought to the people of Cork and the many visitors who we are delighted to welcome to the city for the event. Cork is noted for its high standards, eclectic, wide-ranging programme, and the friendliness of its welcome. Festival events and performances centre on Cork’s City Hall with a capacity of a 1,000; it’s one of the most attractive and acoustically superb venues in Ireland.
49 minutes away from cork festivities lies the perfectly Irish An Sugan Seafood Bar & Restaurant, located in Clonakilty, near to West Cork. This Les Routiers listed establishment has been in the O’Crowley family for the last 30 years. They have developed the business over this time but their core values remain the same; providing good, locally-sourced seafood cuisine in a relaxed, welcoming environment. Designed by Mr O’Crowley, a retired architect, An Sugan has won numerous awards! In 2008 the establishment saw the launch of their newly refurbished private dining room, The Store, where they have two dining rooms to cater for large parties and special occasions.
The fabulous fish on offer comes directly from the West coast including fresh crabs, mussels, lobster, John Dory, hake and black sole. Expertly cooked and presented, customers are always impressed with the level of quality and service. The bar and restaurant have a traditional Irish feel for patrons to relax and enjoy their time at An Sugan. Food is served all day in the bar with a menu that offers everything from the An Sugan Seafood Pie to a Ballyburden Steak Sandwich. Located adjacent to An Sugan is the beautiful 7 bedroom Georgian guest house. The 7 double bedrooms in the Guesthouse are all fully equipped with flat screen televisions, tea/coffee making facilities, hairdryers, extremely comfortable beds (something many guests have commented on). A perfect retreat after all the St Patricks day festivities.
From breath-taking landscapes, rural idylls to buzzing urban hubs and amazing festivals, it’s all waiting to be discovered.