Gardaí turned motorists away from several popular Cork beaches on Sunday, amid major traffic build-ups on nearby roads.
Traffic was heavily backed up on the way to Dock Beach in Kinsale, Sandycove, Garrylucas and Garretstown beaches throughout this afternoon and evening.
While gardaí did not clear those already on the beaches, they did start to prevent anyone else from driving to and parking at them.
A garda spokesperson warned that all the approach roads to the beaches had become hugely congested.
With no parking available, officers in the area began asking motorists to stay away, the spokesperson said.
This weekend, given the fine weather, there had been a major build-up of cars heading in the direction of the beaches in question.
Earlier this morning, AA Roadwatch issued a traffic warning for the area south of Kinsale around Garretstown beach and Garylucas beach.
Garretstown is choc-a-bloc. Cars parked on both sides of road causing chaos. pic.twitter.com/GgsypPB3CP— Kevin O'Brien (@kevob777) June 13, 2021
Local Fine Gael Cllr Marie O’Sullivan said there had been a constant stream of cars through Kinsale since early morning.
"It is the first real sunny weekend this summer and it looks as if thousands of people have headed to the beaches,” she said.
However, Ms O'Sullivan backed their decision to close the beaches to further visitors this afternoon on public safety grounds.
She said gardaí had to ensure emergency vehicle access to the various beaches in the event of an accident.
Cork is not the only location to experience crowds today, with Gardaí earlier tweeting that car parks in Wicklow beauty spots were full.
Car parks in many of the popular public activity locations in Co. Wicklow are now full.— An Garda Síochána (@GardaTraffic) June 13, 2021
Illegally and dangerously parked vehicles will receive FCPNs and be towed / removed.
Please think of others and safety when enjoying the good weather today. #StaySafe #SocialDistancing pic.twitter.com/T68JT17gOO