Kinsale, meaning “Tide Head”, is a picturesque town located at the mouth of the River Bandon along the Cork coast.
Kinsale is a hugely popular holiday and tourist destination, with activities including yachting, sea angling, and golf. There are also a number of excellent restaurants and cafes.
The Scilly Walk provides you with a lovely stroll around the harbour, while there are also guided tours around the town.
A town of huge historical importance in Irish history, the Corporation of Kinsale was established in 1333 by England’s King Edward III and operated until 1840.
In 1601, the Spanish Armada landed in Kinsale to link up with Irish rebel forces in a bid to launch an attack against the English.
This led to the Battle of Kinsale from 2 October 1601 to 3 January 1602, taking place at the end of the Nine Years War.
The English defeated the Irish rebels, led by Ulster’s Hugh O’Neill, 2nd Earl of Tyrone and Red Hugh O’Donnell. This ultimately led to the Flight of the Earls in September 1607, when a number of native Irish aristocrats, including O’Neill and O’Donnell, fled to Europe.
In times of war, an underwater chain was linked between Charles Fort and James Fort, located on either side of the cove, which would rip the bottom out of incoming enemy ships.
In May 1915, when the ocean liner RMS Lusitania was sunk by a German U-boat during the First World War, some of the 1,500 bodies and survivors were brought to Kinsale. There is now a statue in the harbour to commemorate the event.
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