10 Cork date ideas that don’t require alcohol

Found the perfect match on Tinder? Great! But now what? Drinks? As Irish people, we often tend to revert to alcohol to break the ice, so why not make a lasting impression and try something a little different?

Here’s our top 10 date alternatives (in no particular order):

1. Cork Harbour Boat Tours

What better way to break the ice than a sunset boat tour around the city & county? Cork harbour boat tours operate from Cobh and have private self-hire, high speed RIBS and and Cork harbour sailing tours. You can book via their website here.

2. Old Head of Kinsale

Nothing says romance like a sunset stroll along the breath-taking cliffs of the Old Head in Kinsale. Just an 18 minute drive from Kinsale town, the cliffs are a must-do date idea. Hungry? Grab some fish & chips on the way back from ‘Catch of the Day’ food truck along side the Kinsale bridge, it’s an absolute must!

3. Space-themed Mini Golf

Tee off at the UV space-themed mini gold at the AirTastic Entertainment centre at Little Island. Trickier than you’d think, this 18-hole mini golf course is a sure fire way to break the ice and have a blast. If that’s not enough, they also have bowling and amusements options.

4. Alpaca Hiking

That’s right! There’s a place in West Cork that lets you take their pet alpaca’s out for a walk through the forrest. This one is guaranteed to make a lasting impression, and who doesn’t want to pet a furry little alpaca? Slots are limited, and can be booked in advance here.

5. Fota Wildlife Park

An obvious option for sober date, Fota Wildlife park is always a great day out at any age. While you’re in the area, Fota House and Gardens is worth checking out. It’s right next door and entry is free. Spaces for the Wildlife Park are limited due to covid and tickets must be booked in advance via their website.

6. Ballard Waterfall

This hidden gem boasts a hike through the most majestic forest, crossing various wooden bridges and stairs before discovering a picturesque waterfall, tucked neatly in amongst the trees. It’s a bit of a journey, approximately 45 mins from the City just outside Fermoy, but it’s well worth the trip.

7. Marina Market

Eat your way through the various food stalls at the Marina Market. Try as many bite-sized samples as you can, with options ranging from sushi to edible cookie dough. They also have a selection of craft and jewellery stalls so you can grab a little memento of your first date together!

8. Blarney Castle & Gardens

Take a tour of the ancient Blarney Castle and get the gift of the gab by kissing the famous Blarney Stone. Afterwards, take a stroll around the scenic gardens, check out the Insta-worthy Blarney House and grab a coffee at Blarney Woollen Mills. Tickets can be booked in advance here.

9. Garnish Island Tour

Garnish Island is located in the sheltered harbour of Glengarriff, in Bantry Bay. The only way to access these gorgeous island gardens is via the Garnish Island Ferry, which operates from April – October. Afterwards, take a walk through the famous Bamboo Park nearby.

10. Dursey Island Cable Car

Visit Dursey Island, one of Ireland’s only uninhibited island via Irelands only cable car. The cable car traverses the open seawater daily from the mainland to Dursey Island, and visitors often report spotting dolphins and whales down below. No booking is required for the cable car, which costs €10 for a round-trip.

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