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County Kilkenny

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County Kilkenny is in Southeast Ireland in the province of Leinster. It is a land locked county, surounded by the counties of Carlow, Laois, Wexford, Waterford and Tipperary.


  • Kilkenny - The capital city of County Kilkenny is an attractive medieval town. It is home to the Cat Laughs Comedy Festival, held annually in early June.


  • Ballyragget - small town really off the tourist trail. It has a nice square and a fine Roman Catholic church just behind the square.
  • Callan - Check out The Moat, a great example of a Motte-and-bailey. Or visit the childhood home of Edmund Rice, the founder of the Irish Christian Brothers.
  • Graiguenamanagh - Home of magnificent Duiske Abbey. This 13th century Cistercian monastery was once the largest in Ireland. Now used regularly for classical and trad concerts where the brilliant acoustics have thrilled audiences with music from such notables as the Vienna Boys Choir and Irish trad legends such as the Chieftains. The town is perched on the banks of the river Barrow and is a base camp for hillwalkers, cyclists and canoeists exploring the Blackstairs mountains and the Barrow river valley.
  • Castlecomer - The main town in north Kilkenny. Coal was mined here for over 300 years. Visit Castlecomer Discover Park and Footprints in Coal Experience to learn more.
  • Mooncoin - A town near Waterford City, made famous by the song "The Rose of Mooncoin".
  • Thomastown - On the river Nore, this town is famous for Jerpoint Abbey, Kilfane Glen gardens, and Mount Juliet Golf Course.


  • Freshford
  • Inistioge - a beautiful little village on the river Nore. It was the setting for the film "Circle of Friends". It has a lovely square. It also has an impressive multi span stone bridge. Just above the village, are Woodstock Gardens, which are being restored to period 1840 -1890.
  • Piltown - the only place in Ireland to see battle in the Wars of the Roses. A pretty village famous for its "Tower" also know as Sham Castle.

Other destinations[edit]

Map of County Kilkenny
  • Jenkinstown Park, (10km north of Kilkenny, 11km south of Castlecomer, off N78.), [1]. The forested park is a nice place for a walk or a picnic. There are deer and some rare trees. During April the forest is carpeted by bluebells. It was once part of the Bryan-Bellew Estate, of which castle ruins and walls can still be seen. Thomas Moore wrote The Last Rose of Summer while staying at Jenkinstown House. Free.  edit

Heritage Ireland Sites[edit]

There are four Heritage Ireland Sites[10] in County Kilkenny. These sites are maintained by the Office of Public Works (OPW) and the Department of the Environment, Heritage and Local Government. A heritage card, which is valid for a year costs: adult €21, senior citizen €16, student €8, family €55.

  • Jerpoint Abbey, Thomastown. Built in the 12th Century. It is Ireland's finest Cistercian monastic ruin with a magnificantly sculptured cloister arcade. Includes visitor and exhibition centre.
  • Kilkenny Castle, Kilkenny. This stunning Norman Castle, which is the dominant feature in the city, is its principal attraction. Its huge forested gardens are beautiful to walk during the day.
  • Dunmore Caves, Dunmore, Co. Kilkenny (10km from Kilkenny city, off the N78), 056 7767726 (, fax: 056 7767262), [2]. 9:30-17:00 (15:00 Nov-Feb, 18:00 Mid Jun-Mid Sept). The show cave is incredibly well developed and is a wonder to walk around. €2.90 Adult, €1.30 Child.  edit
  • St. Mary's Church, Gowran, Co. Kilkenny, 056 7726894 (). 28th May - 16th Sept: Daily 9.30 - 18.00. A 13th century church.  edit


Tourist Information[edit]

Kilkenny Tourist Office is located on Rose Inn St, in Kilkenny City. It has lots of information about the city and county.



Climate Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec
Daily highs (°C) 8 8 10 12 15 18 20 20 17 14 10 8
Nightly lows (°C) 1 2 2 3 6 8 10 10 8 6 3 2
Precipitation (mm) 86 66 63 51 62 5 52 69 74 85 74 89

For forcast, check out

Kilkenny is in the centre of The Sunny South East. It has the most extreme climate in Ireland mainly because it is not affected by the sea, but don't get too worried. The highest recorded temperature ever was 33.3°C. There is on average, 4 days of snow a year.

Local Media[edit]


  • Kilkenny People, [3]. Weekly paper, out Wednesday. This is the largest selling newspaper in the South East. Covers Kilkenny city and county, with news, sports, property and entertainment listings. James Joyce referred to this paper in Ulysses.  edit


Kilkenny is served by one local radio station, which also serves Carlow. 96FM has news on the hour.


Get in[edit]

By Train[edit]

All the stations in County Kilkenny are on the Dublin - Waterford line, which serves Dublin, Athy, Carlow, Bagenalstown, Kilkenny. Thomastown and Waterford. There are 6 trains a day in each direction.

The railway stations in or near County Kilkenny are:

  • Kilkenny Railway Station (MacDonagh Station), 056-7722024.  edit
  • Thomastown Railway Station, 056-24218.  edit
  • Waterford Railway Station (Plunkett Station), 051-873401.  edit
  • Muine Bheag Train Station (Bagenalstown Train Station). This station is not in County Kilkenny, but just over the border, 4km away, in County Carlow.  edit

Tickets and timetable information can be got at the stations, online[11] or by phone (01 7034070 between 09.00-17.00 Monday-Friday).

Get around[edit]

See[edit][add listing]

Do[edit][add listing]

  • Walk the South Leinster Way, [4]. This is a walk that covers 102km(64miles) from Kildavin, Co Carlow to Carrick-on-Suir, Co Tipperary. It passes through Graiguenamanagh and Inistioge as well as ancient sites, river valleys, forests and by the slopes of Mount Leinster and over Brandon Hill.  edit
  • Waterside Bike&Hike, Waterside Guesthouse, Graiguenamanagh, 086 4084008, [5]. Bike rental company based in Graiguenamanagh and specialising the in the Barrow river towpath. Safe traffic free grass trail with mountain bikes, kids bikes and electric bikes available. Drop off and pick up of bikes anywhere along the trail.  edit

Golf is very popular in Kilkenny.

  • Callan Golf Club, Geraldine, Callan, 056 7725136 (), [6]. An 18-hole course established in 1929.  edit
  • Castlecomer Golf Club, Dromgoole, Castlecomer, 056 4441139.  edit
  • Kilkenny Golf Course, Glendine, 056 7765400 (, fax: 056 7723593), [7]. A members owned 18-hole golf course. Can rent clubs. Green fees €25-45.  edit
  • Mount Juliet Golf Course, (20 minutes from Kilkenny), [8]. This golf course was designed by Jack Nicklaus and is one of the top golf courses in the country. It often holds international golf tournments. Green fees €70-150.  edit
  • Mountain View Golf Club, Kiltorcan, Ballyhale (South of Ballyhale on the main Dublin-Waterford Road (N9)), 056 7768122 (), [9].  edit

Eat[edit][add listing]

Drink[edit][add listing]

Kilkenny is famous for two beers - the Kilkenny beer and the Smithwicks ale[12], famous the world over as the distinct taste. Why not try them on your visit to the County? One of the best pubs to try a pint in the county, or maybe even the world, is the fantastic original pub/shop/hardware that is Mick Doyles in Main St. Graiguenamanagh.

Get out[edit]

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