Clonakilty, County Cork
"My Childhood Holiday Home"
Clonakilty has always been special to me. My father grew up in the town and I spent a huge amount of my childhood in the town.
Clonakilty always struck me as more than just another Irish town. It's a special town with a personality of it's own. Even now, on the rare occasions that I manage to return I have an overwhelming sense of familiarity and belonging to this town which I have never officially lived in but have always considered a home.
"Tidy Town's Winner"
Clonakilty is located in West Cork jut over an hour's drive from Cork City but a world away from the City's atmosphere. Clonakilty has a laid back relaxed, atmosphere in which you cannot help but feel at ease and comfortable. The town is a popular destination for tourists who flock here in the summer to enjoy the surrounding beaches and the town itself. Clonakilty is a former winner of Ireland's Tidy Town competition and the Clonakilty people pride themselves on having a beautiful, well kept town. The houses and shops are brightly coloured and during the summer virtually every building has colourful flower arrangements and hanging baskets adorning their outside walls. The main street, Pierce St., is awash with colour especially during the summer.
Of course you can't talk about Clonakilty without mentioning the beautiful beaches dotted around the town including the now famous Inchydoney Island Beach as well as Owenahincha and The Red Strand.
Inchidoney is now a well known holiday destination thanks in part to the new hotel and spa and it's growing reputation as a surfing hotspot. When I was young you could come here and have the entire beach to yourself. This is impossible now due to it's growing reputation as one of Ireland's most beautiful and spectacular beaches.