Top things to do

Top Choice Gardens in Glengarriff

Ilnacullin (Garinish Island)

This horticultural miracle of an island was created in the early 20th century when the island's owner commissioned architect Harold Peto to design a garden on the then-barren outcrop. Topsoil was shipped in, landsca…
Top Choice Museum in Cobh

Cobh, The Queenstown Story

The howl of the storm almost knocks you off-balance, there's a bit of fake vomit on the deck, and the people in the pictures all look pretty miserable – that's just one room at Cobh Heritage Centre. Housed in the ol…
Top Choice Fort in Kinsale

Charles Fort

One of Europe's best-preserved star-shaped artillery forts, this vast 17th-century fortification would be worth a visit for its spectacular views alone. But there's much more here: the 18th- and 19th-century ruins i…
Top Choice Modern Irish in Northside of the Beara

Josie's Lakeview House

Captivating lake views accompany scrumptious, home-cooked food at Josie's, set on a hill overlooking forest-shrouded Glanmore Lake. Choose from salads and sandwiches for lunch, cakes at tea, or heartier rack of lamb…
Top Choice Irish in Midleton

Farmgate Restaurant

The original, sister establishment to Cork city's Farmgate Café, the Midleton restaurant offers the same superb blend of traditional and modern Irish cuisine. Squeeze through the deli selling amazing baked goods and…
Top Choice Market in Cork City

English Market

It could just as easily be called the Victorian Market for its ornate vaulted ceilings and columns, but the English Market is a true gem, no matter what you name it. Scores of vendors sell some of the region's very …
Top Choice Modern Irish in Baltimore

Glebe Gardens & Café

The beautiful gardens here are an attraction in themselves (admission is €5). If you're dining, lavender and herbs add fragrant aromas that waft over the tables inside and out. Food is simple and fresh, sourced from…
Top Choice Modern Irish in Kinsale

Finn's Table

Owning a gourmet restaurant in Kinsale means plenty of competition, but John and Julie Finn's venture is more than up to the challenge. Elegant but unstuffy, with a warm welcome, its menu of seasonal, locally source…
Top Choice Vegetarian in Cork City

Cafe Paradiso

A contender for best restaurant in town of any genre, Paradiso serves contemporary vegetarian dishes, including vegan fare: how about sweet chilli–glazed pan-fried tofu with Asian greens in tamarind and coconut brot…
Top Choice Pub Food in Glandore & Union Hall

Glandore Inn

Picture-postcard views over the harbour, especially from the outdoor tables, and a superlative menu make this one of West Cork's best pubs for eating out. Fresh seafood is sourced from Union Hall harbour (clearly vi…