Cork Pubs and Bars Tour (Self Guided), Cork

Being the second largest city in Ireland, Cork is a cultural hub that offers guests a diverse selection of pubs and bars to let off some steam. On this tour you will find cozy traditional style pubs filled with friendly locals having a roaring good time, live rock and blues and cheap beer, a bar dedicated to the band Thin Lizzy, and much more. Be sure to absorb the rich culture of Cork when taking in the great sights found on the Cork Pubs and Bars Tour.
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Cork Pubs and Bars Tour Map

Guide Name: Cork Pubs and Bars Tour
Guide Location: Ireland » Cork (See other walking tours in Cork)
Guide Type: Self-guided Walking Tour (Sightseeing)
# of Attractions: 12
Tour Duration: 2 hour(s)
Travel Distance: 3.3 Km or 2.1 Miles
Author: Xena
1
Preachers

1) Preachers

Located on Washington Street, Preachers is a small pub with a big reputation. Its charming traditional wooden interior is embellished with rock band posters and an amusing collection of ashtrays, shoes and other old objects. Visitors are sure to stay late here to enjoy the Irish rock, alternative and indie music on offer.
2
An Spailpin Fanac

2) An Spailpin Fanac

Located across from the Beamish Brewery in the heart of historic Cork City, An Spailpin Fanac dates back to 1779. A splendid old dwelling with low ceilings, exposed brick walls, and open fireplaces, An Spailpin Fanac is known in the city of Cork as one of the best places to hear live traditional Irish music, which is offered from Thursday through Sunday evening beginning at 9:30. On Sundays, guests are treated to local favorites the Cork Singers Club performs. Typical pub food is available at An Spailpin Fanac from Monday through Friday. Patrons will find the atmosphere of this pub relaxed and friendly. Offering great service, this is the perfect spot to meet up with friends and throw back a few pints while enjoying the traditional sounds of Ireland.
3
Sober Lane

3) Sober Lane

Sober Lane, a relaxed pub where you can have a drink when you are around the city. There is an interesting smoking area in the courtyard. Every night the crowd is entertained by a live band, also people can play at a football table or watch a game on the screen behind the bar. The Sober Lane offers a good pizza menu, so you can have a bite while sipping your drink.
4
An Bodhran Bar

4) An Bodhran Bar

A cozy little pub in the heart of Cork City on Oliver Plunkett Street, An Bodhran Bar, or more simply, The Bodhran as it is referred to by locals is a great place to enjoy a few pints with friends. Fans of Thin Lizzy will enjoy the memorabilia lining the walls, as well as albums and other items of interest depicting Rory Gallagher. These plus other great tunes can be found on the jukebox. Being such a small pub with great service and a warm atmosphere, it attracts plenty of guests on the weekends and gets full fast. Get there early in order to secure a seat as there aren't many at the Bodhran. The Bodhran is a great place to meet locals as it is a popular neighborhood bar with a lot of regulars.

Operation Hours: Monday – Thursday: noon – 11.30 pm; Friday – Saturday: noon – 1.30 am; Sunday: 12.30 pm – 11 pm
5
Hi-B Bar

5) Hi-B Bar

Run by the O’Donnells since 1924, the Hi-B Bar is tucked away upstairs on the thriving Oliver Plunkett Street. This elegant little bar regularly entertains its guests with jazz and opera music, for a change of pace from the rowdier pubs found in Cork. Friendly locals can be found here, as well as its enigmatic owner Brian O’Donnell. The décor is decidedly old-fashioned with lots of interesting details that for an almost surreal picture of an Irish bar. Regulars have been known to sing a traditional Irish tune or two every once in a while, and the Hi-B is also known to be welcoming to newcomers to the bar.

Operation Hours: Open daily from 2pm
6
The Old Oak

6) The Old Oak

Although seemingly modest in size from the exterior, the Old Oak is quite large inside, ranking among the city’s largest pubs. Inhabited by plenty of friendly regulars, this pub also gets a fair amount of tourists and though there is plenty of space inside, it can get quite busy, particularly on the weekends. The bar is amply staffed which makes it easy to get a drink even when it gets crowded, and the selection is good and diverse enough o please any guest. Rock and pop music is played here, mainly geared towards a more mature crowd, and live acts occasionally play at the Old Oak as well.

Operation Hours: Monday – Saturday: 11 am – 2 am; Sunday: 12.30 pm – 2 am
7
Charlie's Bar

7) Charlie's Bar

Located nearby City Hall on Union Quay, Charlie’s Bar is a great place to enjoy a few pints at a reasonable price while enjoying anything from rock to blues. Live music performances take place on most nights of the week which tend to attract a decent crowd of guests, particularly on the weekends. An intimate, dark atmosphere creates a relaxed and laid back ambiance. Charlie’s Bar is also open in the mornings, opening at 7:00 AM, and is one of the few Cork bars still granted this type of license. Evening crowds include a more diverse crowd, including college students, making for a livelier crowd. Free Wi-Fi is available here as well.

Operation Hours: Monday - Saturday from 7 am — late; Sunday from 12.30 pm with traditional music session from 3 pm.
8
The Shelbourne Bar

8) The Shelbourne Bar

A cozy little bar in the center of Cork City, the Shelbourne Bar is situated next to the Everyman Theatre and the Gresham Metropole Hotel. It has a friendly, inviting atmosphere with a friendly staff welcoming to visitors and newcomers to city. The Shelbourne Bar also boasts a log fire during the colder months, as well as a heated smoking area. Two large screens display popular sports matches. Lunch is available Monday through Friday, with toasties available on the weekend. During the evening, bar patrons receive a 50% discount on nearby Four Star Pizza orders. The Shelbourne Bar also has free Wi-Fi for its guests.

Operation Hours: Monday – Saturday: 10.30 am – 1 am; Sunday: 12.30 pm – 11.30 pm
9
City Limits

9) City Limits

A great place to catch a live comedy act by any one of its local or overseas comedians, City Limits also includes a nightclub for its guests to dance in between acts. A small club, City Limits can pack in around 200 guests, which makes for an intimate experience between the performer and the audience. There are currently two shows a week, on Friday and Saturday nights. A few notable comedians came up performing here, including Ed Byrne, Dylan Moran, and Tommy Tiernan. For over twenty years, City Limits has gained a deserved reputation as Cork’s best comedy club, and notable entertainers worldwide have regarded it as Ireland’s best.

Operation Hours: 8 pm — 11.30 pm
10
Pat Buckley's Pub

10) Pat Buckley's Pub

Located near the Shandon Cathedral, one of the city’s historic landmarks, Pat Buckley’s Pub is a small, cozy traditional Irish pub. With limited seating, the bar accommodates a fair amount of local regulars mainly. Weekends can get a little crowded as seating is a bit limited in comparison to some of the larger pubs in the area. For an authentic pub experience however, this tiny establishment packs in plenty of charm and character, with a friendly staff and owner who may even let you draw your own pint of Guinness. Amiable locals have also been known to engage in a traditional Irish song to entertain visitors.
11
The Bierhaus

11) The Bierhaus

Located right in the heart of Cork City, the Bierhaus is the best place around when it comes to international beers. Here you can choose from 70 different kinds of beer from all over the world, with regular special brews on tap. You’re sure to have a great time in this entertaining venue no matter which drink you choose.
12
The Franciscan Well

12) The Franciscan Well

The Franciscan Well is an Irish pub and microbrewery, and a true rareness as such. A pub has stood on this site for as long as locals remember. The name derives from the fact that a Franciscan abbey stood here once upon a time. Now it is a protected historic site with an ancient well on the grounds. The brewery operates year round and produces four types of beer: Blarney Blonde, Shandon Stout, Hefewiesen, and Rebel Red. The bar has done well benefiting from its near downtown location and has a spacious, covered beer garden in the rear with often BBQ parties during the summer period. The pub itself is just as commodious and clad in plain wood and copper elements which produce quite modern, US-style microbrewery atmosphere.

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