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Kinsale Harbor
Charles Fort
Desmond Castle

Kinsale ( Irish : Cionn tSáile , pron. / ˌK´un ˈtɑːl´ə /) is a town in County Cork in the southwest of the Republic of Ireland . It is located about 25 km south of Cork City on the coast of the Celtic Sea and has 5281 inhabitants (as of 2016). It forms the south end of the Wild Atlantic Way .

In 1601 the Irish troops and the Spaniards allied with them were defeated by the English at the Battle of Kinsale . In the 17th and 18th centuries, Kinsale was an important naval base. Today it has a well-known marina. The main branch of the economy is tourism, which largely defines the cityscape with a large tourist information center and more than 30 shops, galleries and restaurants primarily geared towards tourists. Various festivities take place in Kinsale every year during the holiday season.

Kinsale is one of more than 20 Irish and British Transition Towns that, at the suggestion of permaculture teacher Rob Hopkins , have developed a program with which the city and its residents promote the transition to a more energy-conscious life “away from oil”.

Worth seeing

  • Old Courthouse - courthouse and museum of local history
  • Main Street
  • St. Multose Church
  • Old Head of Kinsale - impressive cliffs (approx. 8 km from the town center)
  • Nohaval Cove - bay with ruins (approx. 15 km from the center)
  • Desmond Castle 1500, also French Prison called
  • Charles Fort - a bastioned fort built by the English occupiers in the 1670s on the site of an earlier Anglo-Norman castle . On the opposite bank is the crumbling James Fort, an earlier facility from 1602. Both fortresses secured the entrance to the port of Kinsale, located in the mouth of the River Bandon . Charles Fort continued to expand in the centuries that followed and remained a British garrison until 1921, but was partially destroyed in the Irish Civil War. Extensive restoration work has been carried out since 1973.

sons and daughters of the town

  • Anne Bonny (around 1690 – around 1782), Irish rebel and pirate
  • Eileen Desmond (1932-2005), politician (Irish Labor Party)


  • John J. Silke: Kinsale. The Spanish Intervention in Ireland at the End of the Elizabethan Wars. Four Courts Press, Dublin 2000, ISBN 1-85182-551-7 .

Web links

Commons : Kinsale  - album with pictures, videos and audio files

Coordinates: 51 ° 42 ′  N , 8 ° 31 ′  W