Attractions

Top Choice Cathedral in Kilkenny City

St Canice's Cathedral

Ireland's second-largest medieval cathedral (after St Patrick's in Dublin) has a long and fascinating history. The first monastery was built here in the 6th century by St Canice, Kilkenny's patron saint. The present…
Top Choice Castle in Kilkenny City

Kilkenny Castle

Rising above the River Nore, Kilkenny Castle is one of Ireland's most visited heritage sites. Stronghold of the powerful Butler family, it has a history dating back to the 12th century, though much of its present lo…
Top Choice Museum in Kilkenny City

Medieval Mile Museum

Dating from the early 13th century, St Mary's Church has been converted into a fascinating modern museum that charts the history of Kilkenny in medieval times. Highlights include the Rothe Chapel, lined with ornate …
Museum in Kilkenny City

Rothe House & Garden

Dating from 1594 this is Ireland's finest example of a Tudor merchant's house, complete with restored medieval garden. Built around a series of courtyards, it now houses a museum with a rather sparse display of loca…
Gallery in Kilkenny City

National Craft Gallery

Contemporary Irish crafts are showcased at these imaginative galleries, set in former stables across the road from Kilkenny Castle, next to the shops of the Kilkenny Design Centre. Ceramics dominate, but exhibits of…
Brewery in Kilkenny City

Smithwick's Experience

Until its closure, Smithwick's was Ireland’s oldest working brewery. John Smithwick founded the business in 1710 on the site of Kilkenny's 13th-century St Francis Abbey (the abbey ruins remain within the complex). S…
Gallery in Kilkenny City

Butler Gallery

The Butler Gallery in the basement of Kilkenny Castle is one of the country’s most important art galleries outside Dublin. Small exhibitions featuring the work of contemporary artists are held throughout the year. A…
Church in Kilkenny City

Black Abbey

This Dominican abbey was founded in 1225 by William Marshal and takes its name from the monks' black habits. Much of what survives dates from the 18th and 19th centuries, but remnants of more ancient archways are st…
Park in Kilkenny City

Kilkenny Castle Park

About 20 hectares of public parkland extend to the southeast of Kilkenny Castle, framing a fine view of Mt Leinster, while a Celtic-cross-shaped rose garden lies northwest of the castle. A gate on the north side of …
Gardens in Kilkenny City

Butler House Gardens

The beautiful Butler House gardens are home to an unusual water feature constructed from remnants of the British-built Nelson's Pillar, blown up by nationalists in Dublin's O'Connell St in 1966. Access is via a gate…