Thinking about moving to Ireland? Cork City is the second largest city in the Republic and known as the food capital of Ireland. It’s also an important educational center and close to some of the most beautiful regions of the country.
Whether you're actively planning a move to Ireland or just daydreaming a little, IrishCentral has you covered at the start of each week with #MovetoIrelandMonday. This week: Cork City, in County Cork.
Situated on the banks of the River Lee, in the south west of Ireland, Cork City is smaller, more affordable, and more laid back than Dublin, but still has a vibrant nightlife, fantastic restaurants and pubs, and a thriving music and culture scene.
Known as “the Rebel City” — a nickname dating back to when the city supported the Yorkist cause in England’s Wars of the Roses but which is also associated with its resistance in the Irish War of Independence - the city retains its fierce independent spirit.
What you'll find in Cork City
Cork City is home to University College Cork (UCC) and Cork Institute of Technology (CIT) and over ten percent of the city’s population are students from these two institutions. The National Maritime College of Ireland, The Cork School of Music, and the Crawford College of Art and Design are also located here.
Situated in County Cork, Ireland’s science and tech center, the city has attracted several major companies from many different sectors. Cork City is home to Apple’s European Headquarters as well as Siemens, Amazon, McAfee and VMware.
Cork City also has a reputation for being the food capital of Ireland and one of the town’s main draws is its English Market, which dates from 1788 and is one of the finest covered gourmet food markets in all of Europe.
Just outside the city lies Cork Airport, one of Ireland's major airports.
Where to live in Cork
The River Lee splits Cork City in two, creating an island on which the city center is built. North of the river across from the city’s commercial center is the Victorian Quarter, which boasts historic architecture, independent businesses, and antique and flea market shopping. Shandon, which lies across the river the north, was once a fort settlement but is now a picturesque suburb. South of Shandon, the Huguenot Quarter which has some of the best eating and drinking spots in the city. The Oliver Plunkett Street area is home to high-end retailers. The Douglas area is a more upscale neighborhood located south of the city.
Monthly rent in the city ranges between €805 for a studio in a lower cost neighborhood to up to €1,668 for three bedroom accommodation in an expensive area. Purchase property prices can range from €85,000 for a 1 bedroom terrace house to €1,000,000 for a 2 bedroom apartment in the city center, depending on location.
What to do in Cork City
As previously mentioned, Cork City is known for its food and with its fine restaurants, gastro-pubs and cafès, you will never be short of a good bite to eat. The English Market at the heart of the city offers a wide range of local fare, including freshly caught seafood, artisan breads, fresh fruit and gourmet bites.
The city also hosts many festivals, attracting visitors from all over the world. Festivals include the well-known Jazz Festival, the Cork Midsummer Festival, celebrating the arts, the World Book Fest, and Indie Cork, celebrating independent film and music.
St Anne’s Church, built in 1722, is known for its Shandon Bells tower, which still houses the original bells from the 18th-century. Visitors can see the internal workings of the clocks and bells in St Anne’s Tower and may even get the chance to ring the bells from the first floor.
Read More: Irish pubs you must visit in Cork City
Other places to visit in the city include St Patrick’s Street, the Cork Butter Museum, the Cork City Gaol, St Fin Barre’s Cathedral, Fitzgerald Park and Cork Public Museum.
Short drives away are Blarney Castle and its famous stone, Blackrock Castle Observatory, and the quaint fishing town Kinsale.