A lively spa break by the Lee (by hotels.com)

My best friend and I are looking for somewhere to take a mini-break to celebrate both our birthdays. We are hoping to relax and pamper ourselves with a few spa treatments. We don’t plan to stay indoors the whole time though and would like to go somewhere with a bit of buzz one of the nights. What would you suggest?

My best friend and I are looking for somewhere to take a mini-break to celebrate both our birthdays. We are hoping to relax and pamper ourselves with a few spa treatments. We don’t plan to stay indoors the whole time though and would like to go somewhere with a bit of buzz one of the nights. What would you suggest?

I think Cork City would be the perfect place for your birthday break. There are plenty of gorgeous spa hotels to choose from located in the heart of the city so you will definitely find an escape for rest and relaxation whilst having this lively city on your doorstep.

Cork City is situated on the River Lee and has a lively town centre. You will find all your favorite high street shops on Patrick Street and on Opera Lane. Scattered around are some really great bars and restaurants which cater to all different tastes and preferences.

Generations of Cork citizens and visitors have enjoyed the tranquil atmosphere of Fitzgerald Park and you will also. Located beside the River Lee and UCC sports grounds, the gardens play host to the Cork Museum, Riverview Café, a water-lily pond and fountain, a variety of sculptures and even a children’s playground skate park. It is a perfect oasis for an afternoon stroll.

The English Market is a must-see. Recently visited by the Queen, this busy covered market has been trading since 1788 and is one of the oldest municipal markets of its kind in the world. Selling everything from authentic local produce to exotic spices, there is plenty of browsing and shopping to be done or you can choose to sit down and eat some of the delicious food upstairs.

If you have a car at your disposal, I would recommend taking a short spin to Blarney Castle, where you can visit the beautiful gardens, browse the shops or even kiss the Blarney stone. If you are more drawn to the sea, Kinsale is a lovely town to explore for a day or Inchydoney beach outside Clonakilty offers a long stretch of flat sand for a walk to blow away the cobwebs.

Where to stay

Hayfield Manor (*****)

Prices from €169 per room per night on Hotels.com

*Prices are subject to availability at the time of booking
Just a short walk from the centre of the city, the five-star Hayfield Manor Hotel features a full-service health spa, beauty treatments and a steam room. This luxury Edwardian-style hotel also offers an outdoor spa tub and an indoor pool which is perfect place to relax and unwind. The hotel has a bar, a bistro, and a restaurant and offers 24-hour room service and afternoon tea. 

The Maryborough Hotel and Spa

Prices from €140 per room per night on Hotels.com

*Prices are subject to availability at the time of booking
Situated in Douglas, the Maryborough Hotel and Spa has a full service spa, health club and indoor pool. Just a step from the heart of Cork City, this four-star hotel and spa is a welcoming haven of tranquillity and well-being and the ultimate in spa luxury. Additional amenities include a rooftop terrace and a spa tub.

The River Lee Hotel (****)

Prices from €108 per room per night on Hotels.com

*Prices are subject to availability at the time of booking

The River Lee Hotel is within walking distance of the English Market and a great location should you decide to visit Blarney Castle or the Fota Wildlife Park. The leisure centre features a 20 metre indoor pool and The Urban Escape Spa offers a wide array of treatments. The Weir Bistro and Bar Restaurant faces the River Lee and offers seasonal terrace dining.

Imperial Hotel (****)

Prices from €109 per room per night on Hotels.com

*Prices are subject to availability at the time of booking
The four-star Imperial Hotel has a full-service spa, a health club and a sauna. This spa hotel offers a restaurant, café and a bar. The 125 guestrooms at Imperial Hotel include complimentary newspapers and coffee/tea makers and complimentary wireless high-speed Internet access is also provided.

For more information and travel tips on planning your holiday visit www.hotels.com or call 1800 55 3338 to wake up happy on your holiday!