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County Cork and County Wexford, Ireland PDF Print E-mail
Written by Debra C. Argen   

County Cork & County Wexford, Ireland - Blarney CastleCounty Cork and County Wexford, Ireland are home to Blarney Castle, the Hook Lighthouse, which is the oldest lighthouse in Europe, and is also home to Waterford Crystal, providing visitors with a true luxury experience.

 

After beginning our trip in County Clare and County Kerry, Edward F. Nesta and I drove to County Cork and County Wexford in September 2007 to continue our exploration of the "Emerald Isle."

Hayfield Manor, Cork, IrelandOur first stop was to County Cork, where we stayed at the gorgeous 88-room and suite Hayfield Manor Hotel, a member of the Small Luxury Hotels of the World located in the city of Cork. Centrally located, Hayfield Manor Hotel is an absolute stunner with all of the bells and whistles that a guest could want including an indoor swimming pool, a secluded outdoor whirlpool, a spa, two restaurants, an intimate lounge, and piano music in the evening. There is an aviary on the property as well as a putting green, and there are delightful surprises in the guestrooms, which included a putter and putting game in the living room of our suite.

Hayfield Manor, Cork, Ireland - Perrot Restaurant - ChowderDuring our stay we enjoyed Head Chef Graeme Campbell's cuisine at Orchids Restaurant and Perrots where a few of our dining selections included Chowder of West Coast Seafood; and Milk Fed Loin of Veal, Classic Garnish of Braised Onions, Button Mushrooms, Smoked Bacon, Parisienne Potatoes, and Madeira Jus.

Read more about Hayfield Manor Hotel in the Hotels and Resorts, Restaurants, and Chefs' Recipes sections.

Hayfield Manor Hotel
Perrot Avenue
College Road
Cork, Ireland
Telephone:      +353-21-484-5900
Fax:                 +353-21-431-6839
Email:            
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www.HayfieldManor.ie  

Saint Fin Barre's Cathedral - Mosaic FloorsWe visited Saint Fin Barre's Cathedral built by William Burges between 1865-1870 in the neo-Gothic style. Of particular interest inside, is the 3,012 pipe organ, the intricate pictorial mosaic tile floor, and rose windows. Outside, notice the carvings on the front of the cathedral. Sunday Services are conducted at 8:00 am, 11:15 am, and at 7:00 pm, and all are welcome.

Saint Fin Barre's Cathederal, Cork, IrelandOpen for visitors Monday - Saturday. Hours from April until September: 10:00 am - 5:30 pm, and from October until March from 10:00 am - 12:45 pm, and 2:00 pm - 5:00 pm. There is admission charged during visitor hours, and Guided Tours are available.

St. Fin Barre's Cathedral
Dean Street
Cork, Ireland
Telephone:      +353-21-496-3387
Fax:                 +353-21-496-8744
Email:            
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www.Cathedral.Cork.Anglican.org  

English Market, Cork, IrelandAt the suggestion of the concierge at Hayfield Manor, we took a stroll through The English Market, with its interesting shops selling epicurean delights from the freshest of shellfish and seafood, to bakery products, stands selling olives, Irish and imported cheeses, produce, ice cream, and even gifts. The English Market is open Monday - Saturday from 9:30 am - 5:30 pm.

English Market, Cork, IrelandEnglish Market
Between Grand Parade and Patrick Street
Cork, Ireland

Hayfield Manor Hotel is located next to the University College Cork and we took advantage of the opportunity to take a walk through the attractive grounds.

University College Cork, IrelandUniversity College Cork Tours has tours from May until October at 3:00 pm on Mondays, Wednesdays, Fridays, and Saturdays. Open year round from 10:00 am - 5:00 pm Monday - Friday, and from June until September from noon until 5:00 pm.

University College Cork
UCC Visitor Centre
Western Road
Cork, Ireland
Telephone:      +353-21-490-1876
www.Experience.UCC.ie  

We drove to the attractive seaside resort of Kinsale, which is a Heritage Town, and decided to make a visit to Desmond Castle (French Prison) our first stop. Desmond Castle has a most interesting and albeit peculiar history beginning in the 16th century when it was built by Maurice Becach Fitzgerald, the Earl of Desmond, as a tower house.

A partial list of its reincarnations included additions made in the 18th century and operated as the Kinsale Custom House, became a prison for French and Spanish prisoners, later operated as the Borough Gaol until 1846, in 1847 it was used as workhouse accommodations for the Great Famine of Ireland, and became a national monument in 1938. Desmond Castle was renovated between 1986-1992, and became a Heritage Site in 1993.

Desmond Castle Wine Musuem, Kinsale, IrelandDesmond Castle also is the home of the National Museum of Wine, which you are probably wondering, as were we, how it fit into the history of Desmond Castle. Although I would not equate Ireland with wine making, the exhibition features the strong ties of Ireland with Europe including the Hennessey family (cognac). We even learned that there are a few small vineyards near Mallow and West Waterford.

Desmond Castle is open daily from 10:00 am - 6:00 pm. Admission is charged.

Desmond Castle
Cork Street
Kinsale
County Cork, Ireland
Telephone:      +353-21-477-4855
Telephone:      +353-21-477-2263
Email:            
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www.HeritageIreland.ie  

Saint Multose Church, Kinsale, IrelandWe took a walk through Kinsale and stopped to view the medieval Church of Ireland, St. Multose Church, built in 1190, and is still in continual use. Of particular interest inside are the baptismal font and the carved memorials. Services are on Sunday at 8:00 am and 11:30 am.

St. Multose Church
Church Street
Kinsale
County Cork, Ireland
Telephone:      +353-21-477-2220

Debra C. Argen in Kinsale, IrelandIt was a gorgeous, sunny late afternoon in September, and we stopped along the harbor to admire the attractive yachts and boats before heading back to Cork.

In the evening, we had dinner at Orchids at Hayfield Manor Hotel where we dined on Foie Hayfield Manor Hotel, Cork, Ireland - Orchids - Crab with Prawn LinguiniGras and Chicken Ballotine, Armagnac Sultanas, Lychee and Crab Apple Chutney; and Crab & Prawn Linguine, Orange & Tarragon Cream, and Aged Parmesan Shavings.

A trip to County Cork had to include visiting Blarney Castle to kiss the Blarney Stone, which proclaims that whoever kisses the stone will have the gift of eloquence, and should probably add that whoever kisses the stone has to be a bit of a contortionist as it requires laying on your back, leaning backwards, hanging on hand rails, and kissing the wall while a strong gentleman secures your feet. Definitely not the most graceful thing that we have ever done, but we did it, and lived to tell the tale, so to speak.

Edward F. Nesta kissing the Blarney StoneEven if you have no desire to kiss the "stone," a visit to Blarney Castle is very enjoyable to stroll or have a picnic lunch in the park-like acres, walk through the gardens and around the castle grounds, enter the cave, or climb up the winding castle steps to have a view from the battlements.

Blarney Castle, IrelandBlarney Castle & Rock Close is open Monday - Saturday, in May from 9:00 am - 6:30 pm, June until August from 9:00 am - 7:00 pm, September from 9:00 am - 6:30 pm, and October until April from 9:00 am - Sundown. Sunday hours in the summer are from 9:30 am - 5:30 pm, and in the winter from 9:30 am - Sundown. Admission is charged.

Blarney Castle
Blarney
County Cork, Ireland
Telephone:      +353-21-438-5252
Fax:                 +353-21-438-1518
Email:            
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www.BlarneyCastle.ie  

Debra C. Argen at Blarney Woolen MillsAfter visiting Blarney Castle we made a stop at the family owned Blarney Woolen Mills where we "shopped until we dropped." Although the multi-level Blarney Woolen Mills does in fact sell woolens, including those gorgeous Irish sweaters, they also sell a variety of knitwear, clothing, porcelain, sheepskin rugs, giftware, and so much more, and the prices were very conducive to shopping.

As we left the shop with several large shopping bags filled to capacity, we were thankful that we were driving, and also that we had the good sense to bring an extra piece of empty luggage on our trip to carry all of our new purchases home.

Blarney Woolen Mills is open Monday - Saturday from 9:30 am - 6:00 pm, and on Sunday from 10:00 am - 6:00 pm.

Blarney Woolen Mills
Blarney
County Cork, Ireland
Telephone:      +353-21-451-6100
Fax:                 +353-21-451-6194
Email:            
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www.Blarney.com  

Jameson Experience, Middleton, IrelandLearning more about the making of Irish Whiskey was definitely high on our list of things that we wanted to do, and we took an interesting tour at Jameson Experience Midleton, where we not only learned about the history, we also had the opportunity for tasting. Read about our experience at Jameson Experience Midleton in the Adventures section.

Jameson Experience Midleton
The Old Midleton Distillery
Distillery Walk
Midleton
County Cork, Ireland
Telephone:      +353-21-461-3594
Fax:                 +353-21-461-3642 
www.IrishDistillers.ie  
www.JamesonWhiskey.com  
www.Irish-Whiskey-trail.com  

Edward F. Nesta at Cutting Crystal at WaterfordFor a true luxury experience, we arranged for a private VIP Tour of Waterford Crystal at the Waterford Visitor Centre where we had the opportunity to learn about the history of the famous Irish crystal founded in 1783, watch the master craftsmen at work, and also try our hand at blowing and etching crystal, which you can read about in the Adventures section.

After enjoying lunch in their restaurant, we took advantage of the special promotions and discounts, and their ability to ship worldwide, to shop for holiday gifts, as several of the items there are only available in Ireland.

Contact Waterford Visitor Centre for tour hours and to book group or special VIP tours. Special needs facilities are available, as are multi-lingual tours.

Waterford Crystal
Waterford Visitor Centre
Kilbarry
Cork Road
Waterford
County Waterford, Ireland
Telephone:      +353-51-33-2200
Fax:                 +353-51-33-2716
Email:            
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www.WaterfordVisitorCentre.com  

Dunbrody Country House Hotel & Restaurant, County Wexford, IrelandFrom Waterford, we took our rental car on the ferry boat for a quick drive to Dunbrody Country House Hotel & Restaurant, a 15-room and 7-suite luxury property that is a member of the Small Luxury Hotels of the World, and has a Spa, as well as Cookery School, where Chef/Owner Kevin Dundon and his wife, Catherine have created a little gem in the countryside with their 1830s Georgian manor nestled on 200 park-like acres.

Dunbrody Country House Hotel & Restaurant, County Wexford, Ireland - Pithivier of Forest MushroomsThe cuisine as would be expected, was wonderful. A few of our dinner selections included Caramelised Dunmore East Scallops & Creamed Sweetcorn with Watercress & Truffle Shavings; Home-Cured Gravalax with Wasabi-Infused Crème Fraiche and a Springroll of Smoked Salmon & Pickled Ginger; and Pithivier of Forest Mushrooms and Smoked Gubeen Cheese with Caviar of Aubergine and Parmesan Infusion.

We toured the herb, vegetable, fruit and floral gardens and also indulged in pampering Spa treatments at The Spa at Dunbrody with state-of-the-art facilities, and caring personalized service.

Dunbrody Country House Hotel & Restaurant, County Wexford, IrelandRead about Dunbrody Country House Hotel & Restaurant in the Hotels and Resorts, Restaurants, Chefs' Recipes, Spas, and Luxury Products sections.

Dunbrody Country House Hotel & Restaurant
Arthurstown, New Ross
County Wexford, Ireland
Telephone:      +353-51-38-9600
Fax:                 +353-51-38-9601
Email:            
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www.DunbrodyHouse.com  

Dunbrody Abbey, IrelandFrom our base at Dunbrody Country House Hotel & Restaurant, we drove the Ring of Hook, and made a stop to explore Dunbrody Abbey a Cistercian Abbey founded in 1170 AD and completed in 1220. Located a short distance from the road, we walked down the long dirt path to have a walk around the imposing structure which now stands in ruins.

The Visitor Centre and maze are open from the beginning of May until mid-September from 10:00 am - 6:00 pm. Admission is charged.

Dunbrody Abbey
Campile
County Wexford, Ireland
Telephone:      +353-51-388-603
Email:            
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www.DunbrodyAbbey.com  

Hook Lighthouse, County Wexford, IrelandThe Hook Lighthouse is situated at the very end of the rocky Hook Peninsula and is one of the oldest working lighthouses in the world. Stepping out of the car to have a better look at this towering black and white medieval lighthouse built in the 13th century with the wind whipping through our hair, reminded us of its true purpose on the wild, rugged coastline as we watched the daylight gradually turn to dusk.

Arriving early in the evening, we missed the opportunity to tour the lighthouse, which has been open to the public since 1996. If you would like to tour the lighthouse please note Dusk at Hook Peninsula, Irelandthat the Hook Lighthouse Visitor Centre is open November until February from 9:30 am - 5:00 pm, and March until October from 9:30 am - 5:30 pm. Guided Tours of the lighthouse from November until February are on weekends and holidays and daily from March until October. Tours are conducted every 30 minutes in June, July and August, and every 60 minutes from September until May. Admission is charged.

Hook Lighthouse
Hook Heritage Centre
Hook Head
Fethard-On-Sea
County Wexford, Ireland
Telephone:      +353-51-397-055
Fax:                 +353-51-397-056
Email:            
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www.TheHook-Wexford.com  

Templeton Castle, County Wexford, IrelandThe Hook Peninsula was also home of the Knights Templar who established their headquarters in Templeton after receiving extensive lands by King Henry II in 1172. However, by 1307, the Knights Templar had disbanded, and the lands became the property of the Knights Hospitaller who built the fortified church in Templeton.

Dunbrody Emigrant Ship, Wexford, IrelandOn our way to County Wicklow, our next destination, we stopped in New Ross to see the three mast replica of the 1845 Dunbrody Emigrant Ship that brought the Irish to the United States to escape the great famine of Ireland, which provided historical information and insight into this important period of time. The Dunbrody Visitor Centre is open everyday and there is full disabled access.

Dunbrody Visitor Centre
Carmel Delaney
JFK Trust
Park House
New Ross
County Wexford, Ireland
Telephone:      +353-51-425-239
Fax:                 +353-51-425-240
Email:            
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www.Dunbrody.com  

Continue our journey with us as we travel throughout Ireland in the Destination articles: Destination - County Wicklow and Dublin and County Clare and County Kerry, Ireland. Ireland, the spectacular "Emerald Isle," must be visited to truly appreciate its beauty. Slainté!

Important information for Ireland:

The currency for the Republic of Ireland is the Euro. As of September 2007, the exchange rate was 1 US Dollar (USD) to 0.70 Euro. The Euro is divided into 100 cents. Euro coins are available in the following denominations: 1, 2, 5, 10, 20 and 50 cents, and 1 and 2 Euro. Banknotes are available in the following denominations: 5, 10, 20, 50, 100, 200 and 500 Euro (€).

The electric current in the Republic of Ireland is 230 volts, and uses European 3-pin flat and 2-pin round sockets, so it is advisable to bring your own adapters. Time in Ireland is Greenwich Mean Time (GMT), 5+ hours Eastern Standard Time in the United States.

As of September 2007, guests traveling to the United States from Ireland must complete an immigration form and pass through United States Customs at the airport in Ireland. For our 10:30 am flight from Dublin International Airport, our Boarding Card noted that the United States Customs Gate would close at 9:00 am. Be sure to arrive at the airport early so that you will have time to process your VAT Tax Refund paperwork as well as make any purchases from Duty Free, because once you pass through the United States Customs area there is no shopping. VAT Tax Refund is located at the Dublin International Airport after you pass through Security.

The official languages of the Republic of Ireland are English and Irish/Gaelic. Signs are written in both languages. To provide you a feel of Ireland, I have included some basic vocabulary in Irish/Gaelic or Gaelige, pronounced gale-geh, and since many people travel to Ireland to trace their heritage, I have also included genealogy terms.

English

Irish/Gaelic

Pronunciation

 

 

 

General Words

 

 

 

 

 

Airport

aerfort

air fort

Church

eaglais

 

Closing/Opening

clabhsúr/oscailt

 

Dance

ceilidh

kaylee

Golf

galf

galf

Good

maitha (dea)

mah ah

Good day

lá maith

law mah

Good night

oíche mhaith

ee-ha vah

Good bye

slán

slawn

How are you?

Conas taio?

co-nus tee?

Near/Far

cóngarach/ibhfad

 

Please

más é do thoil é

maws eh duh hull eh

Policeman

garda

gawrdah

Post Office

Oifig an Phoist

 

Pub

tábhairne

taw-er nay

Thanks

gura maith agat

gurrah mah a-gut

Today

inniu

 

Tomorrow

amárach

 

Tonight

anocht

 

Yes/no

sea/ni

shah/knee

Welcome

Fáilte

 

 

 

 

Food

Bia

 

 

 

 

Apple

úll

 

Beef

mairteoil

 

Bread

arán

 

Burger

burgar

 

Butter

im

 

Cheese

cáis

 

Cherry

silín

 

Cod

trosc

 

Crab

portán

 

Goose

 

Gooseberry

spíonán

 

Grape

fíonchaor

 

Grapefruit

seadóg

 

Honey

mil

 

Lamb (roast)

uan (uaineoil)

 

Lemon

líomóid

 

Lobster

gliomach

 

Mackerel

ronnach

 

Potato

práta

 

Raspberry

craobh

 

Rhubarb

biabhóg

 

Salad

sailéad

 

Salmon

bradán

 

Sausage

ispín

 

Vegetable

glasra

 

Vegetarian

feoilséantóir

 

 

 

 

Beverages

 

 

 

 

 

Beer

beoir

 

Cheers

Slainté

 

Coffee

caife

 

Cream

uachtar

 

Juice

 

Milk

bainne

 

Tea

tae

 

Water

uisce

ishkek

Whiskey

fuisci

fwishgee

Wine

fíon

 

 

 

 

Genealogy Terms

 

 

 

 

 

Aunt

aint

 

Birth/Death

breith/bás

 

Birth Certificate

teastas (beireatais)

 

Brother

deartháir

 

Child

leanbh

 

Children

clan (family)

 

Cousin

ceathar

 

Daughter

iníon

 

Father/Mother

athair/máthair

 

Grandchild (female)

gariníon

 

Grandchild (male)

garmhac

 

Grandfather

seanathair

 

Grandmother

seanmháthair

 

Married

pósta

 

Sister

deirfíúr

 

Son

mac

 

Uncle

uncail

 

Please read other articles on Ireland in the Destinations, Hotels and Resorts, Restaurants, Chefs' Recipes, Spas, Liquor Cabinet: Celtic Crossing Liqueur, Boru Vodka, Knappogue Castle Irish Whiskey, Fashion, Adventures, and Luxury Products sections.

Discover IrelandFor information on Ireland, please visit the website: Discover Ireland, www.DiscoverIreland.com or call them at +1-800-223-6470. For driving directions in Ireland, visit www.AAIreland.com.

For information on Aer Lingus, please visit the website: Aer Lingus, www.aerlingus.com.

© December 2007. Luxury Experience. www.LuxuryExperience.com All rights reserved.

 
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