Seasonal cruise service will offer visitors a whole new perspective on the harbour

There’s more to the Cork Harbour than cruise ships, you know.

A new, 72-seater tour boat has launched for the summer season, thanks to a €500,000 investment from Ocean Escapes.

The Cork-based company will operate daily guided tours of the harbour, sailing between Cork City and Cobh, with with a return by rail option.

Prices start from €16 for the 1.5-hour trips, which will offer a guided commentary on the sights, sounds and stories of the harbour – “told in a fun and theatrical way by engaging guides”, as the company puts it.

Cork Harbour has come on in leaps and bounds as an attraction in recent years, from growing numbers of cruise ship visits to the award-winning Spike Island and a revamped Titanic Experience Cobh.

Rochespoint Lighthouse, Blackrock Castle, Martello Towers and Ireland’s only naval base at Haulbowline will all be visible on the trip.

“There is a gap in the market for a tour that connects Cork City and Cobh and provides access to our harbour and rich maritime history in an engaging and interactive way,” said Seamus Heaney, Head of Visit Cork, the public-private partnership promoting Cork as a tourism destination.

The harbour tour also coincides with the launch of Pure Cork, a destination brand developed this year by Visit Cork. With a consumer website at, the brand hails Cork as ‘Ireland’s Maritime Haven’.

The seasonal service will sail from Cork City at 11.30am and 4pm daily, and from Cobh at 9am, 2pm and 6pm, until September 2.

Potential customers are advised to check the website for accurate daily timings however, as times may change for cruise ships.