Fireworks Display to Light Up Cork Harbour for Spike Island’s Birthday Celebrations!

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Spike Island will commemorate the 86th anniversary of its independence from Britain on Saturday, July 13th, with a magnificent fireworks display that will light up Cork Harbour!

1,300 fireworks will illuminate the sky on the night, symbolising the inmates who tragically lost their lives during Spike Island’s history as a prison in what promises to be a special tribute and a poignant reminder of the island’s past. 

This momentous occasion for one of Ireland’s most iconic historical landmarks will also include a family fun evening to mark the handover of the prison fortress from Britain on July 11th, 1938.

At this special Independence Day celebration, you can enjoy live entertainment and a host of family-friendly activities, whilst immersing yourself in the island’s rich history. The evening will feature pop-up musical performances, face painters, and much more, ensuring a memorable experience for guests of all ages!

To get to this unique event, you will embark on a ferry journey across Cork Harbour, one of the world’s largest natural harbours, and enjoy a guided tour on arrival, offering detailed insights into the island’s remarkable history before exploring the fort, museums and exhibitions as well as the island’s stunning walking trail with breathtaking views as the sun sets before the main event, with the fireworks display to take place as darkness falls.  

How to Get There

To facilitate the smooth flow of the event, boats will begin departing from 5.15pm.  

Early arrivals can enjoy the island’s attractions and will also be among the first to depart the island after the event concludes.  

Return boats will commence at 10.30pm, departing every 10 minutes. Visitors are advised to check their ticket times for the return boat, with the last departure scheduled for approximately 11.45pm. 


Families and those interested in attending can secure their spot by visiting www.spikeislandcork.ie/spike-island-independence-celebrations-2023/ to reserve their tickets. Attendance will be capped on the island and demand is expected to be high, therefore, advance online booking is essential.  

Further information is available on the website www.spikeislandcork.ie  

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Julia Labedz
Julia Labedz
Julia has several years of experience as a writer and editor, working with independent clients as well as larger organizations. Prior to working for ITTN she was a marketing executive. She has both a BA and MFA in English with Creative Writing, with an extensive professional and creative portfolio. In her free time, Julia works on her novel.

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