Basic information on the region
Regional capital: Cork (119 230 inhab.)
Population: 399 thous. people
Area: 7 459 km²
Characteristics of region: The region is lowland and coastal. For example the coastline of County Cork measures approximately 1,100 kilometers.
Tourism in Cork County
Cork County is world re-knowned for its friendly people, outstanding natural scenery and excellent quality of life. After Dublin, the South-West region attracts the highest number of overseas visitors and has over 2 800 businesses operating in the tourism sector. County Cork has achieved Blue Flag status for nine of its beaches.
Attractions in Cork County include Blarney Castle, Midleton Distillery and Cobh, the port where many Irish emigrants boarded for their voyage to Australia, the United States and other countries. It was also the last stop of the Titanic, before departing on its fated journey. Fota Island is the most visited tourist attraction in Cork County due to unique attractions of Fota Wildlife Park which is the only wildlife park in Ireland.
West Cork is a popular destination for foreign tourists, who visit the small villages and islands as a Sherkin Island, Cape Clear Island and others. Mizen Head, the „southwesternmost point in Ireland“ is also in West Cork, as is Sheep‘s Head. West Cork is noted for its rugged natural beauty, fine beaches and distinct social experience.
Cruise Tourism has significantly developed in recent years with many major ocean liners calling at the marina in Cobh and the Port of Cork.
Cork County Council provides and maintains many leisure facilities, including playgrounds, leisure centers, nature walks, beaches, heritage centers and playing pitches. Cork County Council also plays a proactive role in the development and maintenance of piers, harbours, marinas and general coastal development.
Aims and Activities of the Partner
Cork County Council employs over 2 180 people, and the expenditure budget in 2011 was €309 million. There are three divisional offices in Mallow, Clonakilty and Skibbereen; 12 Town Council offices and 22 Area Offices.
Cork County Council is actively involved in many Local Authority and Community led tourism capital projects including developments on Spike Island, Fort Camden, Mizen Bridge, Mallow Castle alongside a programme of walking, cycling and marine infrastructure initiatives.
The role of tourism as a driver of local and regional socio-economic development and in particular the ability of tourism initiatives to generate jobs and employment will be closely examined and specific outputs will be shared across the partner regions.
A requirement of the project is that a regional workgroup consisting of public and private stakeholders of up to 15 members will be established in each partner region. This group will meet 3 times over the course of the project. An implementation plan to tackle public policies will be drafted by this group and exchange of best practice will occur across each partner region.