festivals cork

Discover Cork’s Top Festivals | Our l Guide

Cork is the ‘Real Capital’ of Ireland known for its rich culture and variety. This lively city is full of history. It is home to the English Market, which has been a key trading spot since 17881. Here, you can find the finest food and crafts. Cork also boasts beautiful landmarks such as St. Fin Barre’s Cathedral and Elizabeth Fort1.

Exploring the city is easy with its great bus system and bike-sharing plan2. This makes it perfect for those who love going to festivals.

Key Takeaways

  • Cork is often called the ‘Real Capital’ of Ireland.
  • The historic English Market has been open since 17881.
  • St. Fin Barre’s Cathedral and Elizabeth Fort are iconic sites to explore1.
  • The city’s bus network and bike-sharing scheme provide convenient transport options2.
  • Festival-goers can savour a plethora of cultural events in Cork.


Introduction to Cork’s Festival Scene

Cork’s festival scene is a key part of the city’s culture. It covers a wide range of events that appeal to everyone. As part of Ireland’s Ancient East and the Wild Atlantic Way, Cork is a diverse festival spot.

One summer highlight is the Cork International Film Festival (CIFF). It’s been going for nearly 70 years and will have its 70th in 20254. The Cork Film Trail event runs from November 9th to 26th at five locations. This offers a unique look into Cork’s history and culture4.

The festival lineup includes special walking tours. They’re funded by Cork City Council’s Community Heritage Grant Scheme4. The CIFF Walking Tours focus on film and culinary history. This is a great way for visitors to experience Cork’s culture.

Cork Pride Festival is from July 30th to August 6th, highlighting diversity5. More events are coming, like Indiependence from August 4th to 6th. There’s also the Quarter Block Party from July 14th to 16th, and the Cork Burlesque Festival from August 24th to 26th5. These festivals make Cork a lively place during the summer.

With many cultural events and upcoming festivals, Cork is always changing. Whether it’s at Triskel Arts Centre or Cork City Gaol, there’s plenty to see and enjoy. These places host many engaging events for both locals and tourists.

Festivals Cork: Celebrating Local Culture

Cork’s cultural scene thrives, bringing together local customs and global trends. The Cork International Choral Festival stands out. It highlights voices from everywhere in a special way.

Cork International Choral Festival

The Cork International Choral Festival shines as a cultural gem. It welcomes choirs worldwide. This grand event, filled with music, unites people in harmony.

It shows Cork’s cultural depth and openness to new ideas. As choirs sing in different city spots, the festival shares the joy of music. It also reveals Cork’s artistic pride and its dynamic future.

cork international choral festival

At the festival, there are many things to see and do. There are concerts, workshops, and contests. For anyone interested in music or simply enjoying the scene, this festival is a must-visit.

Besides the main events, visitors can explore Cork’s vibrant art world. This includes places like the Crawford Art Gallery and the Lewis Glucksman Gallery6. Every visit to the festival strengthens Cork’s reputation for art and culture.

Music Festivals in Cork

Music festivals in Cork are a special mix of music and culture. They draw in both the locals and visitors. These events offer both traditional and modern music, making them appealing to everyone.

Bandon Music Festival

The Bandon Music Festival stems from the traditional “Humours of Bandon.” Now, it’s become one of Cork’s top music events. It welcomes big names like Hothouse Flowers and Mary Black, putting local and international talent in the spotlight.

This festival has grown to be a key part of Cork’s festival scene. It fills the whole city with life every time it comes around. Without a doubt, the Bandon Music Festival is a must-see.

Live At The Marquee

Also on Cork’s music calendar is “Live At The Marquee.” From May 22 to June 22, 2024, this festival lights up Cork City with live music7. It’s loved by all, featuring many artists and music styles.

People from near and far look forward to this festival. It’s a big part of what makes Cork’s music scene so vibrant.

Live At The Marquee

  • The Bandon Music Festival features artists like Hothouse Flowers and Mary Black.
  • “Live At The Marquee” spans from May 22 to June 22, 2024, showcasing live performances in Cork City7.
  • Both festivals are integral to the musical identity of Cork and contribute significantly to its cultural vibrancy.

The Bandon Music Festival and “Live at The Marquee” are key to Cork’s musical charm. They show why Cork is a top spot for those who love music.

Food Festivals in Cork

Cork is famous for its lively food festivals. These events bring together locals and tourists who share a love for delicious food.

Cork Food Festival

The fEast Cork Food Festival started in 2017. Since then, it has become a key event on the food festival scene in Ireland8. From the 7th to the 10th of September, the festival takes place in Midleton, a town with a deep food history8. It focuses on local, seasonal, and genuine food. This means it shines a light on the area’s food producers, scenery, traditions, and stories8. The festival doesn’t just stop in Midleton. It also features Ballinrostig and Ballycotton, showing off the variety of East Cork’s food8. With big sponsors like Jameson Whiskey and Midleton Whiskey, it gets great support from Irish Distillers. They use local ingredients, boosting East Cork’s food producers8. Also, since Jameson and Midleton Whiskey are popular worldwide, they bring global attention to the festival8.

food festivals cork

The English Market

The English Market has been an important part of Cork since 1788. It’s a place where people can enjoy Cork’s best food all year round. This market is full of local and specialty foods, showing off the city’s dedication to local food and new cooking ideas. Here, you can taste the real Cork, from the freshest fish to unique cheeses. The market’s long history and endless appeal make it a must-visit for anyone who loves food and culture. The English Market and Cork’s food festivals both highlight the city’s strong food traditions and its forward-looking culinary scene.

Arts Festival in Cork

Every arts festival in Cork brings a mix of creativity from all over the world. The MTU Gallery shows off modern textile art. And the Cork Public Museum shares stories from the past. These events turn Cork into a big art show, welcoming artists to share their work. They add life to Cork’s art scene.

In Cork City, 41% of festivals happen in unique spots, each with its special vibe7. What’s more, 32% of these are free to attend, making art accessible to all7. Cork’s arts festivals, like the Cork World Book Festival, shine brightly in the festival calendar9.

“Art is at the heart of Cork’s identity. Festivals here embody our rich cultural heritage while embracing global influences.” – Cork Arts Society

Local and worldwide artists come together at Cork’s festivals. These events offer a mix of shows, celebrating local culture and international creativity7. The Cork Midsummer Festival, for instance, shows a wide range of art from near and far9.

arts festival cork

Most festivals in Cork last around three days. This gives people plenty of time to see and enjoy the art. The Cork International Choral Festival and the Corona Fastnet Short Film Festival show how diverse these events can be9.

These festivals make our city come alive with art. From small workshops to big art installations, Cork’s art scene is always buzzing. Each festival shows the amazing creativity of the city to everyone, from visitors to those who live here.

Family-Friendly Festivals Cork

Cork is filled with amazing family-friendly festivals for all ages. One highlight is the Cork Harbour Festival, happening from June 1-10, 20247. It’s packed with fun workshops and activities for both kids and grown-ups.

Don’t miss the Cork Midsummer Festival from June 13-23, 2024, with over 45 events at 30 venues10. You’ll find arts and crafts, exciting performances, and cool science events, making it perfect for everyone10.

If you’re looking for free events, visit the Rockchapel Gathering Weekend on June 7, 2024, in Newmarket7. It’s rich in local traditions and community fun. The Cork Summer Show, happening on June 15-16, 2024, in Cork, is another top pick, full of family activities7.

family friendly festivals cork

For sea lovers, the Fastnet Maritime and Folk Festival in Ballydehob, from June 14-16, 2024, is a must-see7. It mixes maritime fun with lively folk music. And don’t forget the Cape Clear International Storytelling Festival from August 30 to September 1, 2024, it’s free and offers amazing stories7.

If you like science, head to the Cork Carnival of Science at Fitzgerald Park on June 22-23, 202410. It’s full of hands-on experiments and learning for all ages. Also, enjoy a free outdoor show of “The Tempest” performed by The HandleBards on bikes at Fitzgerald Park on June 18-19, 202410.

Lastly, the Guinness Kinsale Jazz Festival from October 25-29, 2024, in Kinsale, is a free music treat for families7. These festivals offer lots of interactive and educational fun. They show why Cork is a great place for family festivals.

Summer Festivals in Cork

Summer in Cork is a time of joy, filled with music and bright colours. The city’s spirit matches the rising temperatures. Numerous summer festivals boost the buzz, making it the perfect season to soak up Cork’s lively vibe.

Summer Singers Festival

The Summer Singers Festival is a major event in the city. It showcases open-air choral performances that enchant all who listen. This festival brings together singers from near and far to share their voices under the open sky. The result is a memorable musical experience that anyone who loves music or is looking for a family day out should visit.

Cork Carnival

The Cork Carnival is a feast for the eyes and ears, celebrating with colour, music, and dance. It reflects Cork’s diverse and united culture. With amazing parades, street shows, and fun activities for families, everyone is sure to find something they love. The atmosphere perfectly captures the essence of celebrating summer in Cork, attracting both residents and visitors.

summer festivals cork

Other interesting summer festivals in Cork include the Cork Harbour Festival, running from 1st to 10th June 2024. It celebrates the city’s maritime roots with various activities. Not far after, the Fastnet Maritime and Folk Festival in Ballydehob offers music, crafts, and nautical fun from the 14th to the 16th of June. And right in Cork City, the Cork Summer Show on 15th and 16th June 2024 tempts with entertainment and competitions7.

These festivals light up the night and give a stage for local artists to shine. They weave a rich cultural tapestry, showing how important community and creativity are to Cork. The events are unforgettable, blending fun with artistic expression.

Festival Date Location
Cork Harbour Festival 1st – 10th June 2024 Cork City
Fastnet Maritime and Folk Festival 14th – 16th June 2024 Ballydehob
Cork Summer Show 15th – 16th June 2024 Cork City

Upcoming Festivals in Cork

Cork’s festival scene is packed with cultural, music, and arts events soon. These capture the city’s lively vibe. The Cork Harbour Festival starts on 1 June 2024, running for ten days by the Cork City waterfront7. Live At The Marquee, from 22 May to 22 June 2024, is a top pick for music lovers7.

The Michael Dwyer Traditional Music and Arts Festival hits Allihies on 7 June 2024, with free entry7. Rockchapel Gathering Weekend, also free, will be in Newmarket on the same day7. The Cork Carnival Of Science happens on 8-9 June 2024, boasting interactive science fun7.

upcoming festivals cork

The Cork Midsummer Festival is a treat from 12-23 June 2024, for those who love the arts7. The Fastnet Maritime and Folk Festival in Ballydehob is perfect for folk music fans, running from 14-16 June 20247. Clonakilty’s Irish Yogurts Street Carnival on 15 June 2024 is a foodie’s dream7. The Cork Summer Show also kicks off on 15 June with free entry and tons of fun7.

The Jim Dowling Uileann Pipe & Trad Festival in Glengarriff is set for 20-23 June 2024, to close the month7. Festivals like the Cork Film Festival and Indie Cork in November and October keep the fun going11. Cork City is always buzzing with culture, welcoming everyone to join in11.


Cork’s festivals are not just events. They show how rich and varied its culture is. They range from music fests like Live at the Marquee to family fun at the Cork Harbour Festival. They bring together local and international talent, enriching Cork’s cultural legacy.

For both locals and tourists, Cork offers a wide range of cultural happenings. This includes food festivals at the English Market and diverse arts events. CIFF Programmes at events like the First Cut! Youth Film Fest on 4th to 9th March and CIFF Fear Screen from 7th to 28th March 2024 show Cork’s varied offerings12.

Looking ahead, Cork’s festivals play a key role in its future. The upcoming free Cruinniú na nÓg online event on 15th June 2024 and CIFF Young (Film) Programmers’ application deadline on 19th April 2024 highlight this. These activities set Cork apart as a dynamic cultural centre, not just for now but for the long term12.

To sum up, Cork’s festivals are a lively window into its community. They blend music, food, arts, and family fun to attract people locally and from afar. These events are vital to Cork, offering joy and showcasing its commitment to culture and a bright future.


What are the most popular festivals in Cork?

Cork has many beloved festivals. The Cork International Choral Festival and Bandon Music Festival are among them. We can’t forget Live At The Marquee and the Cork Food Festival. Each one gives visitors a taste of unique culture and music.

When is the Cork International Choral Festival held?

The Cork International Choral Festival happens late April to early May. It fills the city with sounds from around the world. If you love choir music, this is the place to be.

What can we expect at the Bandon Music Festival?

The Bandon Music Festival is known for its diverse music, rooted in the “Humours of Bandon.” You’ll enjoy performers from home and abroad. It’s a chance to hear great music in a unique setting.

What makes Live At The Marquee special?

Live At The Marquee is all about its lively vibe and varied acts. It draws big crowds every year with performers like Hothouse Flowers and Mary Black. If you love live music, you won’t be disappointed.

Are there any prominent food festivals in Cork?

The Cork Food Festival is a foodie’s dream, mixing local and world flavours. The English Market is also a food hotspot, proud of Cork’s quality dishes. Don’t miss out on these culinary experiences.

What art festivals take place in Cork?

Cork’s art scene shines through various festivals. The MTU Gallery hosts modern art, and the Cork Public Museum shows off heritage. These events prove Cork is rich in artistic talent and culture.

Are there family-friendly festivals in Cork?

Yes, Cork has plenty of family-fun festivals. The Cork Harbour Festival has interactive activities. Elizabeth Fort has history come to life. They’re great for everyone, no matter the age.

What are the top summer festivals in Cork?

Summer in Cork is festive with the Summer Singers Festival and Cork Carnival. These events light up the city with their joyous shows and vibrant decorations. It’s a season of celebration and outdoor music.

How can we find out about upcoming festivals in Cork?

Watch local listings and tourism sites to catch the next Cork event. There’s always something interesting happening in the city. Discover new cultural, musical, and artistic treats by staying in the loop.

Source Links

  1. https://www.theirishroadtrip.com/what-to-do-in-cork/
  2. https://publications.corkcity.ie/view/972498698
  3. https://www.purecork.ie/
  4. https://corkfilmfest.org/trail/
  5. https://corkenglishcollege.com/5-cork-festvials-to-see-this-summer/
  6. https://irelandindepth.com/art-and-culture-events-in-cork-ireland/
  7. https://www.purecork.ie/whats-on/categories/festivals
  8. https://www.feastcork.com/
  9. https://www.corkenglishacademy.com/living-in-cork/festivals
  10. https://www.corkcity.ie/en/council-services/news-room/latest-news/free-family-fun-at-cork-midsummer-festival.html
  11. https://www.myirelandtour.com/travelguide/events/south-west-ireland.php
  12. https://www.corkfilmfest.org/

Healing Spirit festival takes place at Drummany Spirit, Milltown, Cavan, Ireland on the 4rd to 5th August 2024. Our festival is run by our small community group, Drummany Spirit, is family and child friendly and is alcohol and drug free. This boutique festival features a large lineup of live music, plus a large array of holistic events and practices including sweat lodges, yoga classes, movement meditation (ecstatic dance), pranayama/breathwork, meditation; plus alternative healing and therapies, crafts, art, drumming circles and talks by leading authorities on personal and spiritual growth, sustainability, conscious living, and healing.

We are set on beautiful sacred land overlooking Lough Oughter in Cavan. Drummany Spirit is a community group which hosts the festival each year. 2024 is our third year running the festival and it's been a major success so far with new friends from across Ireland and abroad attending. You can see the festival lineup here, see photos from previous years here and you can get tickets here (note: the festival has very limited capacity and is almost sold out) .

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