The 10 Best Things to Do in Kilkenny, Ireland

August 9, 2017 Alida England

Kilkenny is over 400 years old, but it sure doesn’t show its age. Yes, it's an awe-inspiring throng of medieval cathedrals, castles, abbeys and other massive stone buildings, but Kilkenny loves to party. An endless stream of arts festivals celebrating theater, comedy, bluegrass and dance is constantly pumping the city with new life, toe-tapping energy and international flavor.
Restaurants in Kilkenny

1. The Kilkenny Way

28/29 Rose Inn Street, Kilkenny, Ireland +353 86 817 1978
Excellent
92%
Good
6%
Satisfactory
1%
Poor
1%
Terrible
0%
Overall Ratings

5 based on 180 reviews

The Kilkenny Way

We Provide a unique sporting experience giving you an insight into the worlds Oldest (3000 yrs) and fastest field game in the true Home Of Hurling Champions - Kilkenny. Join us for 2 hours of Hurling fun in the Home of the Famous Kilkenny Cats.

Reviewed By Clay F

We did the hurling lesson in June 2017 as part of our 1-day stop in Kilkenny. It was the highlight of our trip. The coach, Andrew, was very personable and relatable. He spent at least 2.5 hours with us, patiently explaining the game to my kids and having fun. We also learned a lot from him about the culture of hurling and the GAA in Irish towns. I would recommend this experience to anyone interested in Irish sport. Great time.

2. Medieval Mile Museum

2 St Marys Lane, Kilkenny, Ireland +353 56 781 7022
Excellent
85%
Good
11%
Satisfactory
1%
Poor
2%
Terrible
1%
Overall Ratings

4.5 based on 162 reviews

Medieval Mile Museum

Located on the 13th century site of St Mary's cruciform church and graveyard.As the starting point of the 'Medieval Mile' trail, it brings to life Kilkenny's history as Ireland's premier medieval city. Displays of Kilkenny's civic treasures and replicas of some of the High Crosses of Ossory illustrate the local Gaelic monastic heritage and and the ancient city's historic role in Ireland. There are a number of Guided tours throughout the day, or visitors can purchase an all-day self-guided tour pass. Audio Guides are available in 5 languages (English, German, French, Italian and Spanish). Child friendly versions are also available in each language. School tours, language schools and third level, please see our website for costings and booking information.

Reviewed By Trippy999 - Wicklow

When we walked in the staff behind the till were great in trying to figure out how to tailor the visit for us the little ones were given little speakers that they can tap against little squares to listen to info appropriate for them older kid got the same but the info was different we did the guided tour which was really well done
There is a lot of interactive things which were great to play with
An absolute must in Kilkenny

3. Jerpoint Park

Kilkenny | L4206, Thomastown, Kilkenny, Ireland +353 86 606 1449
Excellent
78%
Good
19%
Satisfactory
1%
Poor
1%
Terrible
1%
Overall Ratings

4.5 based on 178 reviews

Jerpoint Park

Welcome to Jerpoint Park, where we strive to immerse you in a unique experience of heritage and culture in a very special destination Thomastown in Kilkenny , south east of Ireland. Unearth the history of Jerpoint Park with a guided tour of the footprints of a deserted 12th century medieval town. When it was founded near a crossing point on the River Nore near the Cistercian Jerpoint Abbey. The site also contains the Tomb Effigy of St. Nicholas (Bishop of Myra) plus the Church of St. Nicholas. "One of Irelands's best examples of a deserted 12th century medieval town" a quote from The Heritage Council of Ireland.Savour the delicious homemade scones baked daily during the summer months in our Tea Rooms. Angling on the River Nore for wild salmon & wild brown trout from March - September (ghillie, rods & bait available for hire). Sheep dog demonstrations with geese or sheep is a wonderful event to see.Check website for details of opening hours and guided heritage tour times.Looking forward to welcoming you to Jerpoint.Joe & Maeve

Reviewed By Almostgreynomad - Sydney, Australia

Visited the ‘grave’ of St Nicholas today, on the anniversary of his death, December 6th in the year 343. Jerpoint Park usually opens in summer, but because St Nicholas is buried here …. well, a bit of him ! they also opened today. St Nicholas’s...MoreThank you for visiting Jerpoint Park on St. Nicholas's Feast Day. I really enjoyed our chat beforehand. Wishing you a wonderful Christmas. Maeve

4. Smithwick's Experience Kilkenny

Saint Francis Abbey Brewery 44 Parliament Street, Kilkenny R95 VK54, Ireland +353 56 778 6377
Excellent
70%
Good
24%
Satisfactory
4%
Poor
1%
Terrible
1%
Overall Ratings

4.5 based on 1 reviews

Smithwick's Experience Kilkenny

Located in the heart of Kilkenny city, Smithwick's Experience Kilkenny is a multi-sensory experience that immerses you in the history of Ireland's oldest ale. Get a flavour for how our famous ale has been crafted over generations and finish with a cool refreshing pint in the comfort of our Smithwick's Experience Bar. Audio guides also available in French, German, Spanish and Italian. Come to Kilkenny and discover the craft.

Reviewed By Declan M

Kilkenny is a small enough town so I would say the Smithwicks tour is a must do if you are in town. The tour is a bit short but the rooms are warm so this suits, interesting history told from the Franciscan monks in 1200 ad to the smithwicks family, the 3 beers at the end are well worth the 3 euro extra.

5. Kilkenny Castle

The Parade, Kilkenny R95 YRK1, Ireland +353 56 770 4100
Excellent
55%
Good
35%
Satisfactory
8%
Poor
1%
Terrible
1%
Overall Ratings

4.5 based on 5 reviews

Kilkenny Castle

A stately castle dating back to the 13th century.

Reviewed By Christy_Luv2 - Gorey, Ireland

Do stop by here for a couple of hours. It's well worth a visit and take one of the Guided Tours. They are excellent and the staff are very knowledgeable and willing to share it.... ENJOY!

6. Jerpoint Abbey

Jerpoint | R448, Thomastown, Kilkenny, Ireland 353-56-24623
Excellent
60%
Good
33%
Satisfactory
5%
Poor
1%
Terrible
1%
Overall Ratings

4.5 based on 476 reviews

Jerpoint Abbey

Reviewed By TopDownTrips

We stayed right across the street from here. The remains of this Abbey are quite eerie and breathtaking at the same time. The architecture is very remarkable. I can almost envision how it looked during its day. I would highly recommend this.

7. Woodstock House and Gardens

Woodstock Woodstock Woodstock Woodstock Inistioge, Kilkenny, Ireland
Excellent
61%
Good
31%
Satisfactory
7%
Poor
1%
Terrible
0%
Overall Ratings

4.5 based on 230 reviews

Woodstock House and Gardens

Reviewed By Rustydancer - Dublin, Ireland

You will so enjoy an extraordinary amble around these Gardens. There's a walled garden with pear and apple trees. Several places to rest and sit down along your experience to stop and stare. The monkey puzzle walk is brilliant. The orangery or glass cafe gazebo is wonderful. You feel like you are on top of the world.

8. St. Canice's Cathedral & Round Tower

Coach Rd | Irishtown, Kilkenny R95 V63H, Ireland +353 56 776 4971
Excellent
54%
Good
37%
Satisfactory
7%
Poor
1%
Terrible
1%
Overall Ratings

4.5 based on 1 reviews

St. Canice's Cathedral & Round Tower

St Canice’s Cathedral and Round Tower are an essential part of the structural heritage in the vibrant medieval city of Kilkenny. This ecclesiastical site was founded in the 6th century and named after St Canice. Cill Channigh is the Gaelic for the Church of Canice, the church that originally stood on the site in the 6th century.The Round Tower is the oldest standing structure in Kilkenny City. Tourists can enjoy climbing the Round Tower capturing great views of the city (weather permitting). St Canice’s Round Tower is one of only two Round Towers that people can climb in Ireland. Opening times from 29/11/2011 to 23/11/2011. Monday to Saturday 10am to 1pm & 2pm to 4pm. Sunday 2pm to 4pm. Round Tower Climb Time at 12 noon and 3pm Monday to Saturday and Sunday 3pm. Weather and staff permitting. Admission fee applies for visit into Cathedral and Round Tower. From 24/12/2011 to 02/01/2012 the Cathedral and Round Tower is closed for visiting. PLease check our website for services during the Christmas period.

Reviewed By robboWicklow - Wicklow

If you visit Kilkenny, this is a fine example of medieval architecture. The Cathedral is one of the finest in Ireland, and they have a full robed Choir with Choral services every Sunday. The building is also blessed with a wonderful acoustic and is frequently used for Concerts and other events. There is also a full peal of Bells in the tower, and an adjacent round tower provides wonderful views of the City.

9. Castlecomer Discovery Park

The Estate Yard | Drumgoole, Castlecomer, Kilkenny R95 HY7X, Ireland +353 56 444 0707
Excellent
64%
Good
24%
Satisfactory
7%
Poor
2%
Terrible
3%
Overall Ratings

4.5 based on 389 reviews

Castlecomer Discovery Park

Castlecomer Discovery Park is a young park, opened since 2007. Set in a beautiful 80 acre woodland, Castlecomer Discovery Park boasts an exciting range of recreational and educational activities. Suitable for all ages, it is home to Ireland's longest ziplines at 300m over water, Octagon High Ropes Course, Tree-Top Adventure Walk, Climbing Wall, Junior Woodland Adventure Course, Archery, Boating, Orienteering & Walking trails, School Tours & Field Studies, Team-Building, Elf & Fairy Village, Coal-mining museum, woodland Canopy Cafe, animal viewing area, playground and more! Castlecomer Discovery Park is a social-community Enterprise, a registered charity and operates on a not for profit basis.

Reviewed By gemma G

Had been a few years ago and loved it but this year it was so much better. Everything from beginning to end was fab. The elves were so friendly and happy. The set up was beautiful with tea/coffee/hot choc/mulled wine to drink. Arts and crafts and rope climbing playground all lovely. Mrs Claus was brilliant kids loved her. Santa was fab so nice with The kids. We all had a wonderful time .
Price very reasonable compared to other places. Thoroughly recommend it best we have been to in years.

10. Black Abbey

The Black Abbey Abbey Street, Kilkenny, Ireland 56 21279
Excellent
47%
Good
39%
Satisfactory
13%
Poor
0%
Terrible
1%
Overall Ratings

4.5 based on 458 reviews

Black Abbey

Reviewed By Helen C - County Wexford, Ireland

while in Kilkenny my husband and i decided to do a tour of the many grand churches there. This church was magestic with its beautifully painted ceiling and walls, beautiful stain glass windows and the relic of St. Victoria martyr who died in Rome in 250 AD. Butchard by King Constantine on her way to her first Holy Communion. There is also a medieval statue carved in alabaster of the Holy Trinity.well worth going to see.

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