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Cork Claims Largest Harbour Festival In Ireland

10th May 2017
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Fifteen towns and villages, including Crosshaven pictured above, as well as the city, have joined together to create 60 events Fifteen towns and villages, including Crosshaven pictured above, as well as the city, have joined together to create 60 events Photo: Afloat.ie

Cork has claimed that this year’s ‘Harbour Festival’ will be the biggest maritime festival in the country. Fifteen towns and villages, as well as the city, have joined together with the City and County Councils and Cork Port Company to create 60 events during a “nine-day celebration of the harbour” from June 3 to June 11.

Ocean to City – An Rás Mór and Cork Harbour Open Day formerly existed as two popular one-day events located at different points in Cork’s annual maritime calendar. Both event committees say that they “recognised the synergy between the two events” and worked together to share resources, which has results in the Cork Harbour Festival with the Ocean to City – An Ras Mór as the flagship event

The Committee has announced a programme with these highlights:

OUTDOOR ACTIVITIES: Sailing, kayaking, speed boat trips, surfing, swimming, coasteering and stand-up paddle boarding. Or, if you want a more relaxing festival experience, try the seaweed foraging walk or the wonderfully soothing mobile sauna.

HERITAGE: the history and stories of Cork Harbour at its ancient forts and heritage sites; from Camden Fort Meagher Open Weekend on 3rd-5th June to Roche’s Point Lighthouse Open Day on 4th June. Take a guided walk of Elizabeth Fort or jump on a ferry to Spike Island for a tour of Fort Mitchel.

Ocean to City - An Rás Mór, Ireland’s premier rowing event, on Saturday June 10th. This spectacular long distance rowing race attracts hundreds of participants from all over the world competing in everything from traditional wooden boats, currachs, gigs and longboats to Chinese dragon boats, kayaks and stand-up paddle boards.

FAMILY FUN: Visit the Pelican of London Tall Ship; go water trampolining or orienteering; take a ghostly tour of Cork City; learn survival skills on Spike Island, or go crab fishing in Cobh. There is so much on offer for all the family.

WALKS & TALKS: A diverse range of walks and talks are featured in the festival. Join us for a food trail in Cork City, a photography safari along Cobh Harbour or an historical walking tour of Cobh. From 6th to 8th June, come along to the hugely popular Lunchtime Lectures with the UCC Department of History at St. Peter’s Church, where topics such as fisheries, coastal defence fortifications and Cork Women and the U.S Navy will be presented.

CULTURE: Featuring ten different exhibitions as well as art performances, music, circus, songs and stories there is plenty to offer the culture vulture. Visit ‘Portraits: Women of Cork and the U.S. Navy 1917-1919’ at the Sirius Arts Centre; explore the art exhibition ‘Tairlearach – From Beyond the Sea’ at Cork City Hall and the internationally renowned ‘Unveiled Horizons’ at the Port of Cork.

Joya Kuin, Festival Manager, “Cork Harbour Festival is getting bigger and better each year. The festival encompasses all that the harbour has to offer the visitor and local alike, packed full of heritage, culture, stories, water activities, people and communities and lots of fun and memories in the making”. Now in its third year, the festival celebrates Cork Harbour as a natural and cultural resource, with the communities and their stories at the heart of it.

The full festival programme of over 60 events will be available online from 9 May here

Published in Cork Harbour
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It’s one of the largest natural harbours in the world – and those living near Cork Harbour insist that it’s also one of the most interesting.

This was the last port of call for the most famous liner in history, the Titanic, but it has been transformed into a centre for the chemical and pharmaceutical industry.

The harbour has been a working port and a strategic defensive hub for centuries, and it has been one of Ireland's major employment hubs since the early 1900s. Traditional heavy industries have waned since the late 20th century, with the likes of the closure of Irish Steel in Haulbowline and shipbuilding at Verolme. It still has major and strategic significance in energy generation, shipping and refining.

Giraffe wander along its shores, from which tens of thousands of men and women left Ireland, most of them never to return. The harbour is home to the oldest yacht club in the world, and to the Irish Navy. 

This deep waterway has also become a vital cog in the Irish economy. 

 

‘Afloat.ie's Cork Harbour page’ is not a history page, nor is it a news focus. It’s simply an exploration of this famous waterway, its colour and its characters.

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