Activities Fota Island Resort Cork

Fota House, Arboretum & Gardens

A wealth of treasures for you to immerse yourself in...

Fota House, formerly an 18th century hunting lodge, was the centrepiece of an estate which covered the entire 780 acres of Fota Island.  Early in the 19th century it was enlarged for John Smith Barry by Richard and William Morrison, architects of many of Ireland's finest buildings.  The style is classical throughout and the decor reflects continental trends in the gilt, marble work, painted ceilings and magnificent plaster details. 


Situated close to us at Fota Island Resort Hotel Cork, Fota House has over 70 rooms, ranging from modest servant rooms to the large and beautifully proportioned principal rooms.  Guided tours run hourly, and allow the visitor to experience the fine craftsmanship that was to be found in the 18th and 19th centuries, the fully restored kitchen and game larder, as well as one of the most important collections of Irish art and furniture in Ireland.

John Smith Barry also embarked on a programme of works to turn the entire island into an estate of parkland, woods and pleasure grounds.  The arboretum, with its beautiful orangery, formal walled gardens, and 12 acres of parkland was begun in the mid 19th century, and today boasts one of the finest collections of rare and tender trees and shrubs grown outdoors in Ireland and Britain.
The Cafe@Fota is situated in the long gallery of the house, and serves a selection of home-made hot and cold meals, cakes and tea and coffee.
Fota House Opening Hours:
Daily (7 days) from April - end October
10 a.m. - 5 p.m. (Last Admissions 4 p.m.)


Entrance Prices:
-  Adult: €8.00
-  Child: €3.00
-  Senior Citizens/Students: €6.00
-  Group: (15+) €6.00 p.p.
-  Family (2 adults +2 children): €19.00
For private or group visits please contact by phone on 021 481 5543 to arrange a visit tailored to your needs. 

For further information please visit:



Fota Arboretum and Gardens


Located in the sheltered harbour of Cork, Fota Arboretum and Gardens houses one of the finest collections of rare and tender trees and shrubs in Europe. The collection was begun by James Hugh Smith-Barry in the early 1940's and was continued by his son and granddaughter after his death.


Fota Arboretum contains an exceptional collection of conifers with some 130 species and varieties representing 26 genera. There are many outstanding examples, some of which were among the first to be planted in Europe. Fota also has a large number of Southern Hemisphere and Oriental broadleaved trees and shrubs.


The large walled gardens contain a stunning rose collection, extensive borders of monocots, Southern Hemisphere herbaceous plants and climbers assembled with the assistance of the National Botanic Gardens, Glasnevin. The formal gardens include Yew hedges, a sunken Italian garden, a classical summerhouse, a restored orangery and a formal rose garden. South west of Fota House is a Victorian fernery and rockery.


Fota Arboretum and Gardens Opening Hours:


Daily 9am - 6pm (April - October incl.) 

Daily 9am - 5pm (November - March incl.)


Walled Gardens:

Mon - Fri  9am - 4 pm (April- October incl.) 

Sun 2 - 5pm (April - Sept incl.)


Closed Christmas Holidays and Good Friday.

Tours: Available by prior appointment, Mon – Fri only. 


Fota Arboretum and Gardens are free of charge to all visitors. 

For more information please call +353 (0)21 481 2728


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