Cork is European Capital of Culture in 2005. It is one of the oldest cities in Ireland and now is a modern bustling port city. The city's unique character derives from a combination of the people, topography, built fabric and its location on the River Lee at a point where it formed a number of waterways.
Medieval Cork was a walled city; the shadow of the wall remains today, influencing the streetscape and street pattern. Although few ancient monuments survive in Cork, the buried archaeology embraces every era of the city's developments from the 7th century monastery to the 17th century urban expansion. Remains from the medieval period are particularly rich, and recent excavations have unearthed evidence of the Viking settlement.

SS. Peter and Paul
Photo Cork City Council

St. Ann's, Shandon
Photo Cork City Council

Blackrock Castle
Photo Paul Twohig

St Patrick's Bridge
Photo Cork City Council

The Chateau, bar
Photo Cork City Council

Fitzgeralds Park
Photo Paul Twohig

 

 Above ground, Cork has a significant 19th century industrial heritage and the built fabric, dating from the 18th-20th centuries, portrays a lively and inventive building tradition. The result is a city of diverse but harmonious character with a heritage rich in styles, materials and colour.

 The focus of the modern commercial city is along the newly renovated St Patrick's Street. It is a compact core that is easily visited on foot. A vibrant social and cultural scene incorporates modern and traditional music venues, several theatres, art galleries and the city museum, a diverse range of restaurants and a friendly and welcoming population. The coastline scenery of Co. Cork is well renowned, and the neighbouring towns of Clonakilty, Kinsale, Youghal and Blarney each has a charm of its own. The city's University, which will be the venue for the EAA Annual Meeting in 2005, is set in a beautiful campus near the city centre.