County Cork
Castle & Palace Tours

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Our most recommended County Cork Castle & Palace Tours

From Dublin: Cahir and Blarney Castle Full-Day Tour

1. From Dublin: Cahir and Blarney Castle Full-Day Tour

Set off on board a luxury, air-conditioned motor-coach and watch Dublin's urban cityscape give way to the rolling, green hills of the Irish countryside. This full-day trip will drive through several areas of interest, including the Galtee Mountains and the Curragh in County Kildare, which is home to Ireland's National Stud Farm. First, arrive at Blarney Castle which is known around the world for its famous Blarney Stone. Kiss the stone and receive the “gift of the gab." Be sure to explore the rest of Blarney Castle as well as its lush grounds and woodland walks. Discover the scenic Rock Close by taking the Wishing Steps.  Depart Cork and arrive at one of Ireland’s 7 Wonders, the Rock of Cashel in County Tipperary. Explore the Hall of Vicars, Cormack’s Chapel, the Celtic Cathedral, the Round Tower, and the surrounding grounds filled with ancient high crosses. In addition, admire one of Ireland’s oldest Romanesque wall paintings inside this world-famous historical landmark. Afterwards, be returned to Dublin city center to complete your tour. For your final stop of the day, visit one of Ireland's largest and best-preserved castles, Cahir Castle. The Castle was built in the 13th century, to house the Butler family. Built as a defensive castle it still boasts a lot of the original structure.

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Blarney Castle Full-Day Tour from Dublin

2. Blarney Castle Full-Day Tour from Dublin

Discover Ireland’s most famous castle on a full-day tour from Dublin, and kiss the legendary Blarney Stone of Blarney Castle. Depart Dublin through the green fields and dairy farms of the Golden Vale of County Cork, and enjoy panoramic views of the Galtee Mountains and County Tipperary along the way. Head in to Cork City on the banks of the River Lee, pausing for approximately 1-hour to wander at leisure. Use your free time to visit the historic English Market, or marvel at St. Finbarre’s Cathedral. Drive on to Blarney Castle, home of the legendary Blarney Stone. It’s said that if you kiss the stone you will receive the “gift of the gab” for 7 years! Explore the castle grounds and gardens to discover the Witch's Cave, and enjoy tax free shopping at Blarney Woollen Mills and craft shop. Go to one of Ireland's most evocative sites, stroll in the footsteps of St Patrick, Celtic crosses and round towers. Depart for Dublin, driving via the Golden Vale of County Tipperary, with an estimated arrival time back in the city at 21:00.

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Dublin: Full-Day Tour to Cork, Cobh and Blarney Castle

3. Dublin: Full-Day Tour to Cork, Cobh and Blarney Castle

Escape the hustle and bustle of Dublin on a full-day tour south, departing by train from Heuston Station at 06:40 for the InterCity service to Cork City. Upon arrival, head to Blarney Castle, where you can kiss the famous Blarney Stone and acquire the gift of eternal eloquence! Then, relax with some free time to shop and enjoy lunch in Blarney village. Next, return to Cork for a short city tour of Ireland’s southern capital, famous for its arts, music and literature scenes. Built on the site of a 6th-century monastic settlement, the city center is full of Georgian buildings, 17th-century alleys, and dynamic new architecture. Continue your journey along Cork Harbour to Cobh, location of the Queenstown Story Heritage Center. Set in a beautifully restored railway station of the Victorian age, it was also the transatlantic terminal that served as the point of departure to the New World for generations of Irish emigrants, from the time of famine up to recent years. Transfer back to Cork City center to catch your return InterCity train back to Dublin, with a scheduled arrival at Heuston Station at 20:20.

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Ireland: 5-Day Escape to the Southwest Tour

4. Ireland: 5-Day Escape to the Southwest Tour

Discover the scenic splendor of southwest Ireland on a comprehensive 5-day tour of The Burren, the Dingle Peninsula, and the fabled Ring of Kerry. Stop at historic castles and monasteries, and wander the colorful fishing villages to sample fresh seafood. Enjoy dramatic views from the Cliffs of Moher, and stroll along the vast stretch of Inch Beach watching the local surfers. Transportation is by small minicoach, with accommodation in quaint bed and breakfast guesthouses for a more intimate experience. Day 1: Depart Dublin and head west through the farmland and peat bogs of Kildare and Offally counties. Stop at Locke’s Distillery, reputedly the oldest legal distillery in the world. Sample the local whiskey to experience the true spirit of Ireland. Continue west to the mighty Shannon River, and vist the early Christian site of Clonmacnoise. Admire its collection of churches, stone crosses, and round towers. After an afternoon stop in a traditional pub in one of the attractive villages, travel to Galway City to check into your base for the night. This lively student town has no shortage of good pubs and restaurants to enjoy in the evening. Day 2: From Galway City it’s only a short drive along the coast to The Burren, one of Ireland’s great natural treasures. Marvel at the limestone pavements, barren hills, and rare flora. See Christian settlements and ancient stone monuments. You will spend most of the morning exploring this unique area, stopping in Kilfenora for lunch. Known as the “Town of the Crosses,” there will also be time to visit the old cathedral before driving to the Cliffs of Moher. Marvel at this natural beauty, where the cliffs drop almost 700 feet into crashing Atlantic Ocean waves. Take a walk along one of the cliff top trails, and watch the seabirds at work. Alternatively, visit the award-winning environmental exhibition to learn about the region’s ecology. Then, travel south through County Clare, passing the famous golf course and beach at Lahinch to catch the ferry across the Shannon Estuary and into County Kerry. Go to the beautiful lakeside town of Killarney, your base for the next 3 nights. The pubs here are great for food and most have live music in the evenings. Day 3 Today, you will explore the Dingle Peninsula, one of the most scenic parts of Ireland. Your first stop in this heartland of Gaelic culture will be Inch Beach, a vast expanse of sand facing the Atlantic Ocean popular with surfers. From here, increasingly narrow roads lead onto the peninsula itself, through the town of Dingle and out to Slea Head. This is an area of ancient forts and dwellings that date back thousands of years. Visit some of the best examples along the way. Enjoy views of the Blasket Islands as they rise dramatically from the sea. Marvel at the mountains of the famous Ring of Kerry to your south. Weather permitting, time will be allotted for a walk on the beach or along the cliff tops. Learn why the area is important in Gaelic literature. Then, head back to Dingle town with its brightly colored buildings and busy harbor. Spend the rest of the afternoon at leisure, before returning to Killarney. If the weather is good you could enjoy an evening walk in Killarney National Park, just on the edge of town. Day 4: Today, you will take one of the world’s classic routes, the 100-mile Ring of Kerry. Depart Killarney and enjoy the views to Carrauntoohil, Ireland’s highest mountain. Join the coast road through Glenbeigh and Kells to Cahersiveen. Possible stops along the way include Daniel O’Connell’s birthplace, and the ring fort of Cahersiveen. Go to the little fishing village of Portmagee for a lunch of local seafood. Alternatively, cross to the island of Valencia and visit the Skellig Experience to learn about the small community of monks who once lived on the nearby rock island of Skellig Michael. In the afternoon, stop in picturesque Waterville, a favourite holiday destination for Charlie Chaplin. Stop again at the top of the Coonmakista Pass for one of the best views in Ireland. From here, the road drops down to sea level, where you will visit Derrynane House, the family home of Daniel O’Connell. You can stroll in the gardens and down to the beach, as well as look inside the house itself. Continue around the Ring, stopping at Moll’s Gap and Ladies View. There will also be time for a short walk to the Torc Waterfall before returning to Killarney. Day 5: The final day of your tour heads east through the mountains of West Cork and the market town of Macroom. Then, drive along the Lee Valley to Blarney Castle. Visit the castle and take one of the woodland walks to the mystical Rock Close. Explore the village of Blarney, stopping for lunch and a bit of shopping. There may even be time to kiss the famous Blarney Stone, although in peak season it can be very busy. In the afternoon, head to the Rock of Cashel to see the medieval monastery complex high above the town. Finally, go to Kilkenny, a bustling city with a fine castle and park, as well as some lovely riverside walks. Visit the National Craft Centre, or just hang out in one of the pubs for a last Guinness. Hit the road again for the final leg of your journey, arriving back in Dublin at approximately 19:30.

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From Dublin: 3-Day Cork, Ring of Kerry & the Cliffs of Moher

5. From Dublin: 3-Day Cork, Ring of Kerry & the Cliffs of Moher

Day 1 Check in Dublin Heuston (Customer Service Desk) for 07:00 departure of InterCity train (breakfast available) to Cork. Transfer by road to Blarney Castle and kiss the famous stone. After time for lunch and shopping and a flavor of Cork City, visit Cobh Heritage Centre, home of the "Queenstown Story," where the Titanic made its last port of call, and from where 3 million Irish people emigrated. Depart Cobh by train to Killarney, where you will be taken to your bed & breakfast accommodation, with en-suite facilities. There are numerous restaurants in Killarney, as well as traditional pubs-many with live traditional Irish music. Day 2 Embark on the famous Ring of Kerry tour, which is a largely coastal drive around the Iveragh Peninsula, with lots of stunning mountain and coastal scenery, including the famous Lakes of Killarney. After the day's touring, the evening is free in Killarney. Day 3 Leave Killarney for Limerick, to join the Cliffs of Moher tour. Take a short city tour of Limerick, and then visit Bunratty Castle, before lunch at a traditional pub at Doolin. You will have plenty of time to see the majestic Cliffs of Moher, before taking the coastal route around Galway Bay, with stops for photos. Return to Dublin by InterCity train, arriving at 20:45. * Prices are per person sharing Single Room Supplement applies

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Ireland: Blarney Castle, Kilkenny & Irish Whiskey 3-Day Tour

6. Ireland: Blarney Castle, Kilkenny & Irish Whiskey 3-Day Tour

Discover the scenic splendor of southeast Ireland on a 3-day tour of the lush farmlands of Kildare, the stunning Wicklow Mountains, and the fabled Copper Coast road to Waterford. Stop at historic monasteries and castles, learn about the fateful voyage of the Titanic from Cobh, and go to the famous Waterford Crystal Factory.  Enjoy a more personal experience in this small group tour with maximum of 16 passengers on a top of the range Mercedes luxury mini-coach, while a quaint bed and breakfast accommodation for 2 nights provides a more intimate experience. Day 1: Depart Dublin for Cork, driving through the lush farm counties of Kildare, Laois, and Tipperary. Make a short stop in the heritage town of Cahir to see the ruined abbey and impressive castle on an island in the River Suir. Continue to Blarney on the outskirts of Cork. Visit the castle and take one of the woodland walks to the mystical Rock Close. Explore the village of Blarney, stopping for lunch.  There may even be time to kiss the famous Blarney Stone. After this, there is a chance to discover Jameson Whiskey Distillery and taste one of Ireland's favorite exports. In the afternoon, tour the beautiful coastline of West Cork, and see some of the magnificent beaches, tiny inlets and coves. End the day in the fishing village of Kinsale, where you will be based for the night. Kinsale is famous for its food, and the evening is free to wander the narrow streets, popping into traditional pubs and restaurants. Day 2: Explore some of the highlights of southeast Ireland, starting with the historic port of Cobh, the main departure point for Irish emigration in the 19th and 20th centuries. It was also from here that the Titanic ocean liner set forth on her ill-fated maiden voyage. Continue east to Waterford, traveling along the “Copper Coast” (a designated UNESCO geo-park for its spectacular beauty). Stop at the popular surfing beach of Tramore, before heading into Waterford, Ireland’s oldest city. Founded by the Vikings in the 9th century, it’s also famous for the Waterford Crystal Factory, which you are free to visit along with one of the excellent museums. Alternatively, explore the Viking Triangle on foot. In the late afternoon, depart for the busy city of Kilkenny with its fine castle and park, as well as some lovely riverside walks. Go to the National Craft Centre, or hang out in one of the pubs and enjoy a glass of Guinness! Day 3: Enjoy a free morning to explore Kilkenny before driving to the Wicklow Mountains. Marvel at some of Ireland’s highest granite peaks and see impressive valleys carved by glaciers. One of the area’s highlights is Glendalough, known as the “Valley of the Lakes.” Take one of the walking trails, or explore the ruins of the 6th-century monastery to see its round tower. The last section of your tour takes you into the heart of the Wicklow Mountains National Park, before crossing the famous Sally Gap to descend into Dublin for an approximate 18:30 arrival.

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Cork: Hop-on-Hop-off Sightseeing Tour (Cork Hopper)

7. Cork: Hop-on-Hop-off Sightseeing Tour (Cork Hopper)

Climb aboard the Cork Hopper bus and begin your exploration of the best attractions in the county. Make a first stop at Blarney Castle, and take the chance to kiss the Blarney Stone and receive the "gift of the gab" for 7 years. Visit the witches caves in the castle grounds or indulge in the tax-free shopping haven of the Blarney Wollen Mills, Ireland's biggest craft shop. Next, stop in the historic city of Cobh situated on the Cork Harbour. Hear stories of the millions of Irish people that emigrated from Cobh between 1840 and 1950 and see the place where the Titanic set sail in 1912. See the Titanic monument in the town center and visit the impressive St Coleman's cathedral.  Climb back aboard the bus and consider jumping off at one of Ireland's most famous attractions, Fota Wildlife Park. Situated in Carrigtwohill, County Cork this 70-acre wildlife park is home to 50 bird species and 30 mammals. Many of the animals are free to roam and interact with visitors such as squirrel monkeys and giraffes. After this, make an optional stop at the Jameson Experience, located in the Old Distillery in Midleton. The distillery was established in the 1700s and has a wonderful visitor's center. Learn everything you need to know about Ireland's most popular whiskey. Tickets for Jameson Experience are not included but can be purchased on the day. At the end of the tour, the bus will drop you off in Cork City Center.

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Blarney and Cobh Tour from Cork

8. Blarney and Cobh Tour from Cork

Your excursion begins with a scenic drive to Blarney, where you’ll have plenty of time to visit the world-famous Blarney Castle and its gardens, and to kiss the Blarney Stone. Explore the magnificent gardens and visit the witch of Blarney. If you like, you can indulge in some tax-free shopping at the Blarney Wollen Mills, Ireland's biggest craft shop. Your 5-hour tour then continues to Great Island, where you’ll visit the town of Cobh. Cobh is situated on Cork’s harbor and is best known as the point of embarkation for millions of Irish emigrants leaving Ireland in the 1800s and 1900s. It was also the Titanic’s last stop. Enjoy some free time in Cobh, where you can visit magnificent St. Coleman's Cathedral, or choose the optional, award-winning Titanic Experience, an exhibition in the original White Star Line building. The tour ends when you return to Cork city center at around 17:30.

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Other Sightseeing Options in County Cork

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What people are saying about County Cork

Overall rating

4.3 / 5

based on 374 reviews

We travel many times with this company for which I am very gratefulThis is another of the very informative and interesting mind-blowing days of the visited places and my three children really liked The wonderful driver comfortable Van. Everything was very good I advise and recommend to everyone who is in search of new knowledge see new places and just a great quality cognitive time️❤️

Philip was THE BEST tour guide I’ve ever had — and I’ve had quite a few. Beyond being super kind/helpful, incredibly informative, and an expert driver, he was absolutely hysterical. Me and my family had such a lovely day. It was an extraordinary experience overall — and it was all because of Philip!

This was the second time I had taken this tour. Fantastic! Seriously, the weather was perfect, which was unusual, so every photo was a postcard. The tour guide - Phillip - proved both knowledgeable and fun. I HIGHLY recommend this......

Rudy, our guide and driver did an exceptional job telling us about the history of Ireland. The best part was kissing the Blarney Stone! We thoroughly enjoyed this tour!

Absolutely loved the whole experience! Our guide, Paul, had a fantastic wealth of knowledge & funny little anecdotes.