Cobh (Cork), Ireland
Information Not Currently Available
Approimately 4 Hours
Meals not included
Cork, Ireland's second-largest city (or the "real capital" of Ireland, as the inhabitants like to call it) is your first destination today. Criss-crossing the city's bridges, a panoramic drive takes you past St Fin Barre's Gothic Cathedral, the medieval Old Town, the University, City Hall and the famous Bells of Shandon. This university town is a hub for jazz, film, opera and theatre. Although it offers all the amenities of a large city, it retains the pleasant charm and friendliness of a country town.
Continue on a short drive to Blarney village, which lies in the protective shadow of historic Blarney Castle. The castle was built in two sections and has a massive oblong keep with traditional Irish battlements. Below them, the famous Blarney Stone is set into the wall. Legend has it that it imparts the gift of eloquence to those who kiss it but, in order to do so, you must lean over backwards from the parapet walk of the battlement. This is quite an undertaking. Nonetheless, today, you have the opportunity to kiss the Blarney Stone yourself.
Straighten up and shake it off with an easy stroll down to Blarney Woollen Mills, one of Ireland's finest craft and gift centers. You will have free time here to enjoy an Irish coffee, test out your newfound eloquence on your fellow travelers, and browse through the wide range of Irish clothing, crystal, linen and handicrafts.
Notes: Wear comfortable walking shoes. Guests with physical limitations or a fear of heights can skip kissing the Blarney Stone. There are 108 steps on a narrow spiral case to reach the stone. There can be long lines and a significant wait to kiss the Blarney Stone; patience is required. Bring local currency, as many vendors do not accept credit cards or US dollars.