Middleton whiskey

Ireland: A Day Trip To County Cork

An early start for the road trip, we were picked- up at the INEC Killarney by Kerry Coaches . The itinerary for the day was to visit different location that show case the best places to visit in County Cork. Our private Kerry coach was  comfortable and very spacious, I even catch up some snoozed on the way. After and hour or so, we arrived in Cobh and we were met by Eimear ( Failte tourism board representative) our guide throughout the day.

Cobh  is situated on an island just east of Cork City’s harbour. It was first called “Cove” (“The Cove of Cork”), also known the Queenstown a tourist seaport ( to commemorate a visit by Queen Victoria in 1849 ). It is famously known as the last port of call of the Titanic in 1912.

Visit the Cobh Heritage Centre with a permanent display exhibit of Irish history, and the history of RHS Titanic. A very popular place for tourist  from cruise ships. Wandering around this quiet town was like walking back in time, while listening to the sad story about the Titanic. As the members of the families left behind waving goodbye to their love ones embarking on the ship.

While in Cork it’s best to make the most of it and a visit to a distillery is a must, not just some ordinary but the famous Jameson  Distillery   in Midleton.

It was just only 11 am but who cares? Are you ready for some whiskey tasting?   I’m not really a whiskey person, but during the tour visit I discovered and acquainted well with the rich whiskey aroma that awakes every fibre of my senses.

My taste buds was teased with rich smooth taste of different whiskey flavours from blended single grain to single pot still, aged 12 years.  We started with Redbreast single pot still aged 12 years.Then the Black Barrel triple distilled and Midleton Barry Crockett a single pot still. I think we sample about 3 to 4 whiskey, but to be honest I have lost count the whiskey was flowing!

History behind the distillery: Jameson Distillery and Whiskey Tasting Experience is situated in Midleton County Cork, an Irish whiskey museum compound is set in 15 acres was opened to the public in 1992. It used to be a woollen mill then converted to a military barracks and stables, before it was operated as distillery in 1825. And in 1867 several distilleries  around Cork was merged to Cork distilleries Company.

After the distillery tour we were ready for Lunch! We headed to Sage Restaurant a very classy restaurant with strong ethos on using locally source ingredients using the 12 miles radius. Their menu changes daily and their dish only consist of  three ingredients, according to Chef Kevin (restaurant owner) ” not to let confuse your pallet with different flavour but instead to savour the freshness of each  ingredients”. 

They also have The Greenroom, they serve food which less conservative with sourcing of their ingredients it goes as far as 50 to 100 miles radius but still on season produce.

Following lunch we headed towards Youghal. A historic walled seaport town located on the coastline of East Cork. Wandering around this quaint town and admiring the historic buildings and monuments scattered within its ancient  town Norman walls was a bliss!

With time constraints, we only had a chance to visit the Tower Clock. A great place to explore tales from its fascinating past. The iconic 18th century clock tower, was built in 1777 as a gaol. The adjacent Victorian shop fronts stand shoulder to shoulder with 13th and 16th century dwellings, was indeed a pretty sight to capture.

We were shown around by the volunteers or shall I say storytellers, was an amazing experience. It felt like we were transported back in time that spans over hundred years of history, with our visit in every room.

A great display of how it  used to be a grim prison for the locals, even just for a petty crime they commit. Before their exile abroad, they will spend years in this place at some occasion with their families too. The highlights of the visit were the 360 degrees view at the top,  it was very  picturesque  overlooking the River Blackwater.

After a quick visit at the Tower clock, and a bit of history, it’s about time to head to Cork. We didn’t do the usual touristy sightseeing, but instead we did an evening kayaking activity.

It was a fantastic paddling along the Atlantic coast, the evening temperature is obviously cooler, but the total experience was exhilarating. The taster kayak activity was provided by Atlantic Sea Kayaking.

The day trip to Country Cork was fantastic! A beautiful place to explore for its history spanning thousands years. A great place for  kayaking adventure,  as well as fun and informative visiting the distillery.

Disclaimer:  Even though all the activities were organised by the Fāilte Ireland Tourism. I retained full editorial control and all opinions are my own and not influenced in any way.

I enjoyed my experience as a guest at the Jameson Distillery Midleton but received no further remuneration to write this post. You can book directly the tastings experience on their website at Jameson Distillery.

We were hosted at the Sage restaurant with complimentary four course meal. Do check out their site for table booking at Sage Restaurant.

A complimentary evening kayaking was provided by Atlantic Sea Kayaking, do check out their site for booking this activity.

The wonderful day trip was make it possible by Kerry Coaches luxury transport provider in Ireland. Check out their site for booking.

Did you like that s article do check out my Fun and Adventure in Killarney.

Insider’s Tip:

  • If you are looking for an epic road trip adventure, I highly suggest Ireland is the best place to go. Imagine those rugged cliffs and amazing landscape it has to offer. Your holiday photos for sure an envy of your friends!
  • While in Cork area try to visit the quiet town of Cobh, the last port call of the Titanic before it tragically sink on it’s voyage to America.
  • Are you an adventure junkie? Then kayaking along the Atlantic coast is for you to try!

42 thoughts on “Ireland: A Day Trip To County Cork

  1. I have a dear friend who lives in Cork and he’s always telling me wonders about Cobh! But I never knew about the Jameson Distillery: now I’m almost sure my husband will want me to add it to our itinerary for our next visit!!!

  2. Great report on your trip to Cobh. You are right, 11am is the perfect time for your first Irish whiskey, it simply is part of the country’s fabric. And how good is the food in Ireland? When I asked friends before my Ireland trip what to look out for they said, nothing. Or maybe, potatoes (in jest, of course). But then when I finally got to Ireland, I was amazed at how good the cuisine really was. I think they’ve come a long way, and the local ingredients used in cooking are just amazing. Thanks for sharing your experiences with us.

    1. Hahaha yes 11 am isn’t really that early on Irish time for whiskey…. it was indeed a great for food i was expecting less but local restaurant has good attitude towards sourcing their ingredients makes it fresher and better taste

  3. We were supposed to visit Cork but unfortunately ran out of time. A pity, because I was quite interested in seeing the distilleries. I’m sure my daughter would have liked the Titanic display – she’s fascinated with the ship.

  4. This absolutely sounds like an incredible Irish Day Trip! Especially visiting the Jameson distillery. I love Jameson. I’d also really like to visit the Tower Clock. It looks really interesting! Plus, kayaking seems like quite the adventure.

  5. Wow, visiting the Jameson Distillery must have been amazing! This whole adventure around County Cork looks like a blast, but being a whiskey man myself I think I would be looking forward to that aspect the most. Though the kayaking looks pretty fun too!

  6. Oh . I almost went to Ireland this summer. I have made a note of Cork county. Yes, the prisoners were sentenced for 14 years or more for petty crimes like stealing fruits and they were sent to Australia or NZ . This just reminded me of the Convicts Museum we saw in Sydney.
    Kudos for the nice pictures.

  7. A trip to the Jameson Distillery in Midleton sounds like it would definitely be in order – whiskey of course being a cultural experience in these parts :D! Sage Resturant sounds like it put on a great lunch afterwards.

    Crazy that the now clock tower was once a jail – so much history! I can’t begin to imagine the stories which would have taken shape in those buildings throughout time. Views from the top sound sweet though!

    Sounds like you had a fabulous day – super cool idea to do an evening kayak – no drunk paddling though lol 😉

    1. It is definitely Distillery visit is a must regardless of time, who can say No to whiskey ?… it was a great visit at the Tower clock too a deep history behind those walls.

  8. Cork looks great. “Is that where cork is from?”…was my favorite dad joke at one point. I’d definitely have to visit the Jameson distillery, it was my gateway to whiskey!

  9. Cork looks really charming. The heritage centre sounds fascinating and a great place to get a piece of the Irish history. I can see you had a spirited time at the distillery. The pictures are really very vivid and bring alive the alluring charm of the place.

    1. Yes County Cork was indeed fascinating place to explore from the rich history and the fun side of visiting the Jameson distillery completes the amazing day trip.

    1. You can’t go and visit County Cork without a customary visit to a distillery. The big Titanic museum is in Belfast but Cobh is the last port call before the tragedy.

  10. Although I live in London, I never got the chance to visit Ireland but next year I will definitely do it. Cork looks amazing and drinking whisky at 11 is all about getting to know the culture. Kayaking is definitely something I will do.

  11. I love Ireland, but haven’t yet been to County Cork. After reading this, I’ll definitely get out there, it looks like so much fun. I do like a good whisky, so I’ll also visit Jamesons!

  12. The Tower Clock sounds fascinating! I would love to visit it too one day to know more about the city’s past. And it’s awesome that you got to do a whiskey tasting (even if it was before lunch! haha..). Next time you should definitely try some stronger (single malt) whiskey! 🙂

  13. Ireland is amazing! Ive done a road trip there few years ago and it was one of the best experience in my life! Such a wonderful country! I am actually going back there in 2018 so hopefully I can visit Cork too! The whisky tasting seems like so much fun!

  14. Seems like a really fun day out. Not a big fan of Whiskey but I bet my hubby would jump at that one. I liked reading about the old Clocktower tour – and I can see how much fun kayaking was. Thanks for sharing such a fun day.

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