Clonakilty is a multi-award winning, cosmopolitan and friendly seaside town on the Wild Atlantic Way which in 2017 was awarded "Best town to live in". It is a vibrant, friendly and colourful town surrounded by beautiful beaches and home to a rich food and music culture. A visit to Clonakilty is a must to get a true feel of the relaxed ‘West Cork’ lifestyle.
A wander through Clonakilty’s buzzing Friday market in the Georgian Emmet Square is a good starting point to understand the town’s food culture. Local organic farmers, cheese makers, foragers, fishmongers, bakers and coffee roasters jostle shoulder by shoulder with procurers of exotic treats from Europe and the East. A particular favourite is Clonakilty Chocolate made with beans from one village in Ghana by a local cooperative enterprise. You will also find a distillery, brewery and artisan ice cream make in the place the locals call "Clon." There are lovely independent shops which you'll find wandering through the pedestrian friendly centre and Spillers Lane.
Clonakilty is a music hub and boasts a great line-up of festivals throughout the year. Rock, pop, traditional sessions in local pubs, Irish and international acts, gigs at world-famous DeBarras Folk Club - Clonakilty has something for all music fans. Want to get a sense of the history here head just out of town to the Fernhill House Hotel on a height north of Clon surrounded by beautiful gardens of the original manor house. As you look south over Clonakilty you are also looking over the ancestral lands of the families of Henry Ford, John Fitzgerald Kennedy and Michael Collins. Two left Ireland, one stayed, all made history and changed the world.
Top tip: There are several! The fantastic new Clonakilty Distillery, the wonderful West Cork Model Railway Village (and Road Train through the town) or the really excellent Michael Collins House on the Georgian Emmet Square where he lived while going to the local school.