Kilkenny travel guide

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Introduction to Kilkenny

Home to more than 22.2 thousand people and the magnificent Kilkenny Castle, Kilkenny Castle Park, and St Canice's Cathedral, Kilkenny is an adventure awaiting you. With a unique historical background and an incredible variety of natural and architectural beauty, Kilkenny is a highlight in Ireland. This city in County Kilkenny, Ireland is a travel destination with plenty to offer curious travelers.

Traveling to Kilkenny is especially rewarding for anyone eager to connect with locals and learn more about their unique culture and traditions.

Easily accessible, Kilkenny is the perfect base for a memorable and unique vacation in Ireland any time of the year. Explore this culturally-rich town and easily plan your trip to Ireland. For an enriched understanding of the town’s cultural tapestry and local events, you might want to consult the official website of Kilkenny.

Top services in Kilkenny

On this page, you'll find all the top travel services in Kilkenny, Ireland. Enjoy the convenience of planning and booking every detail of your trip to Kilkenny, including flights, accommodations, activities, and more, in one place.

Discover the cheapest and most popular flights offered by a variety of airlines that fly to Ireland. Check out the best things to do in Kilkenny by browsing over 25 top-rated tours available to you in the town. Compare the rates and services of the stays and 1 car rental companies offering CDW insurance coverage.

Experience the best of Kilkenny with an expertly curated and fully customizable itinerary. Get answers to questions about the routes and services offered in Kilkenny from our free 24/7 customer support. We make it easy for you to find and book every detail of your trip to Kilkenny with this travel guide.

Continue reading this Kilkenny travel guide to learn how you can enjoy a stress-free and memorable vacation in the town of Kilkenny!

Learn more about Ireland

With destinations such as Kilkenny, a trip to Ireland needs no further explanation. Spanning over 69,797 square kilometers, Ireland is an expansive playground of discovery, offering a wealth of diverse landscapes, rich cultural heritage, and captivating experiences awaiting exploration. From bustling metropolises to historic towns and modern urban hubs, Ireland has something to enchant every traveler.

In Kilkenny alone, travelers are spoiled for choice with an array of experiences and world-famous attractions such as Kilkenny Castle, Kilkenny Castle Park, and St Canice's Cathedral. Thus, a trip to Ireland becomes essential. Whether you're drawn to historical sites, natural wonders, or vibrant cultural experiences, Ireland offers an abundance of treasures waiting to be discovered.

There's so much to explore and uncover in Ireland. Click or tap the link below to discover more about Ireland and its offers.

Best time to visit Kilkenny

The best time to explore Kilkenny, Ireland is from April to October when the weather is mild and the county's verdant landscapes are in full bloom. During these months, daily temperatures range between 15°C to 20°C, providing perfect conditions for outdoor activities like hiking and city walks. The summer months, particularly July and August, are popular with tourists and can be crowded, so visiting in the shoulder seasons of April-June or September-October can offer a balance of pleasant weather and fewer crowds. Kilkenny also hosts a number of festivals throughout the year that are worth considering when planning your trip. The Kilkenny Arts Festival in August and Savour Kilkenny Food Festival in October are among the highlights, offering unique glimpses into the local culture and cuisine. However, if you prefer a quieter experience, consider visiting in the spring or late autumn. Remember, Irish weather can be unpredictable, so pack for all eventualities no matter when you choose to travel.

Local tip for visiting Kilkenny

One insider tip that locals have for visitors to Kilkenny is to explore the city on foot. Kilkenny is often referred to as a 'walking city' due to its compact and pedestrian-friendly layout. This allows visitors to discover hidden gems that are not typically part of the tourist trail. These include quaint local shops, traditional pubs and hidden historical landmarks. Walking also gives you a rare opportunity to mingle with the locals and, if you're lucky, you might catch a traditional Irish music session in one of the pubs. Another insider tip is to visit Kilkenny during its annual Arts Festival in August. This is when the city truly comes alive with a vibrant mix of music, dance, visual arts, and theatre, showcasing the best of local and international talents. Just remember, Kilkenny's weather can be unpredictable so always carry a raincoat or umbrella.

What to see in Kilkenny

photo of view of Kilkenny,Ireland.

Expect an exhilarating journey through Kilkenny, a haven brimming with attractions to suit every traveler’s taste. From historical landmarks to natural wonders, and delectable cuisine, Kilkenny offers an abundance of experiences waiting to be discovered. Dive into this ultimate Kilkenny travel guide to uncover must-visit spots and get the scoop on what makes the town so special.

Top attractions in Kilkenny

With its blend of traditional and modern culture, Kilkenny is more than just a wonderful town in Ireland. It's a hub for diverse experiences, boasting top attractions that range from historical landmarks to modern marvels, offering a glimpse into Ireland's rich heritage and innovative spirit.

One popular place to visit in Kilkenny is the unforgettable Kilkenny Castle. Considered one of the most well-known attractions in the town, a visit to this spectacular travel destination is something you shouldn't miss on your trip to Kilkenny. This remarkable attraction is located at The Parade, Dukesmeadows, Kilkenny, R95 YRK1, Ireland, and is open for visitors Monday - Sunday, between 09:00-17:30.

For more information about what you can expect during a vacation in Kilkenny, check out our list of top attractions below. Discover the best places to visit in Kilkenny, including the fascinating Kilkenny Castle, Kilkenny Castle Park, St Canice's Cathedral, Smithwick's Experience, and St. Mary’s Medieval Mile Museum.

Map of attractions

Take a closer look at the town map below for the exact locations of all the top attractions in Kilkenny.

Things to do in Kilkenny

photo of view of Kilkenny,Ireland.

You've explored Kilkenny's top attractions and marked them on your map. So now, it's time to delve deeper and discover the top things to do in Kilkenny. These activities not only offer excitement and adventure but also provide unique insights into the city's culture and heritage. Take your experience to the next level by checking out the best sights with a knowledgeable guide, embarking on fun adventures unique to Kilkenny, or learning more about the town's rich history and traditions.

Discover the most popular tours and experiences in the town below.

Most popular experiences in Kilkenny

A visit to Kilkenny gets more exciting with memorable experiences. And the town is just perfect for that, with plenty of fun activities. Historical Tours, Walking Tours, Audio Guides, and more are just some of the options you could explore to fully immerse yourself and make the most of your time.

In this travel guide, we've included some of the best things to do in Kilkenny, adding a special touch to your journey in this vibrant town. Explore bustling markets, embark on scenic hikes, sample local delicacies, or immerse yourself in the rich history and heritage of Kilkenny. Browse this diverse array of unforgettable experiences Kilkenny offers and let your adventures begin!

Top tours & tickets starting in Kilkenny

In Kilkenny, travelers are spoiled for choice with a dazzling array of 8 categories of top-rated tours and tickets. But among this sea of options, one category reigns supreme: Activities.

Activities offer an unparalleled opportunity to immerse yourself in the heart and soul of Kilkenny. For example, the fantastic Walk the Medieval Mile with Pat.

Kilkenny also offers plenty of budget-friendly tours and activities that promise travelers a unique experience. Medieval Mile Museum Self Guided Audio Tour, for example, is the cheapest Walking Tour option in the town. This experience costs around 9 EUR.

Elevate your upcoming Kilkenny adventure with unforgettable experiences by booking top-rated tours in the town. Uncover the finest tours, activities, and tickets awaiting you in Kilkenny right below.

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Search for things to do in Kilkenny

Discover the best things to do in Kilkenny. Choose from 25 fantastic tours and activities available in the town.

Select your dates and number of travelers in the search bar below to receive the best recommendations for your vacation in Kilkenny. Click the green button to view your options and discover a variety of exciting things to do in Kilkenny.

What to eat in Kilkenny

In Kilkenny, Ireland, the culinary scene is a delightful blend of traditional tastes and contemporary flair. One of the best places to eat in Kilkenny is the area around Kieran Street and the Medieval Mile, where you can find everything from street food to high-end dining. For a taste of traditional Irish cuisine, try the hearty Irish stew or boxty, a potato pancake, at one of the local pubs. Kilkenny is also known for its artisanal cheese, so don't miss the chance to sample some at a local farmer's market or specialty store. For a more upscale dining experience, visit the award-winning Lady Helen Restaurant, which offers a tantalizing menu featuring locally sourced ingredients. Whether you're looking for a quick bite or a luxurious dinner, Kilkenny offers a range of culinary experiences that cater to all palates. Remember to pair your meal with a pint of local Smithwick's ale or a glass of Irish whiskey to complete the experience.

Nightlife in Kilkenny

Kilkenny, a charming city in Ireland, is also known for its vibrant nightlife that captures the true spirit of Irish hospitality and entertainment. The best area for bars in Kilkenny is undoubtedly the city center, where you can find an array of pubs and clubs offering live music, traditional Irish dances, and a wide selection of local beers and whiskeys.

Kyteler's Inn, the oldest pub in Kilkenny, is a must-visit establishment. With its medieval atmosphere and live folk music, it provides a unique experience that is quintessentially Kilkenny. For those who prefer a more modern setting, the Left Bank is a stylish bar housed in a converted bank building, offering craft cocktails and an upscale ambiance.

Kilkenny’s nightlife is not just about the bars and pubs. The city is also home to the renowned Watergate Theatre, where you can enjoy a range of performances from drama to comedy and live music. Remember to check the schedules and book in advance.

Whether you are looking for a traditional pub experience or a lively club scene, Kilkenny’s nightlife has something to suit everyone's taste. It’s an important part of the city's culture that is not to be missed when visiting.

Best Shopping in Kilkenny

Kilkenny offers a unique shopping experience combining traditional craftsmanship, modern fashion, and local flavor. One of the best places to go shopping in Kilkenny is the Kilkenny Design Centre, a hub for local artisans showcasing handcrafted pottery, jewelry, and textiles. Here, you can pick up iconic Nicholas Mosse pottery or a piece of handwoven Celtic Shawl. For a mix of top international brands and independent boutiques, head to the MacDonagh Junction Shopping Centre. It's the perfect place to find the latest fashion trends and traditional Irish clothing.

For a more down-to-earth experience, visit Kilkenny's weekly farmers' market, held every Thursday on the Parade. You'll find locally grown produce, homemade goodies, and artisanal crafts, making it a great place to pick up unique souvenirs.

When planning your shopping trip, remember that most shops in Kilkenny open around 9 am and close at 6 pm, with later hours on Thursdays and Fridays. Many shops accept credit cards, but it's a good idea to carry some cash, especially for the farmers' market. Happy shopping in Kilkenny!

Best Free Things to Do in Kilkenny

When it comes to exploring the medieval charm of Ireland, Kilkenny never disappoints. For budget travelers, there are countless best free things to do in Kilkenny. Start with a self-guided walking tour of the city's medieval mile, an enchanting stretch filled with ancient buildings, winding lanes, and hidden courtyards. Immerse yourself in the rich history of Kilkenny Castle's parklands, with the castle as an impressive backdrop. Remember, the park is free, though the castle itself has an admission fee. For art lovers, the Butler Gallery offers rotating exhibitions of contemporary art without any entry cost. A stroll along the picturesque River Nore is a must for nature enthusiasts, offering breathtaking views and a chance to spot local wildlife. Lastly, don't forget to visit St. Canice's Cathedral, one of Ireland's most magnificent religious buildings. You can appreciate the stunning architecture from outside for free. These activities not only offer a great way to save money but also provide a rich, fulfilling experience in Kilkenny.

Car rentals in Kilkenny

photo of view of Kilkenny,Ireland.

To navigate Kilkenny effortlessly, renting a car is an excellent choice. With your own wheels, you can explore every nook and cranny of the destination without relying on public transportation and even venture off the beaten path. On our website, you'll discover a selection of over 1 car rental companies in Kilkenny, ready to provide you with the perfect vehicle for your travels.

If you prefer driving a manual car, you'll find multiple options for rent in Kilkenny, starting at 25 EUR per day or 175 EUR per week. The cheapest manual rental car is a Volkswagen Polo.

Learn more about the different types of cars you can rent in Kilkenny, Ireland below.

Popular types of cars for rent in Kilkenny

Renting a car in Kilkenny is a popular choice among travelers who want to explore the town at their own pace. A wide variety of popular car rentals are available to choose from in Kilkenny, ensuring you find the best car for your travel plans.

Check out all the options available and book your car rental in Kilkenny for your upcoming adventures in Ireland below. All car rentals come with CDW insurance for added protection throughout your trip.

Search for car rentals in Kilkenny

Get ready to hit the road and explore the beautiful town of Kilkenny. Find the best deals on a variety of popular car rentals in Kilkenny, Ireland, or any other destination in Europe by using the search tool below.

Enter your pick-up and drop-off location, driver's age, and dates. Click the green button to view your options.

Popular destinations to visit after Kilkenny

photo of view of Kilkenny,Ireland.

The town of Kilkenny is just one of the many unique and scenic destinations you can visit in Ireland. So if you're itching for another cultural adventure, a relaxing road trip, an action-filled city break, or a memorable weekend getaway, know that Ireland has it all.

Each destination in Ireland offers something unique to experience! Take the opportunity to visit other captivating places in Ireland that are as magical as the town of Kilkenny. The most popular travel destinations in Ireland are listed below. Click on the name of the place you want to explore next to learn more about it.

All the best destinations in Ireland

When unsure about where to go next, use the map below. This map shows the locations of all the best destinations in Ireland. Use the map to plan your trip and find the best routes.

Transportation in Kilkenny

Kilkenny, a medieval city in southeast Ireland, offers a range of transportation options suitable for all types of travellers.

The public transportation system, primarily serviced by Bus Éireann, provides easy access to the city centre and surrounding areas, making it an efficient and cost-effective way to explore. Alternatively, taxis are readily available and offer a more private mode of transport. Local taxi companies such as Kilkenny Taxi-Cabs are reliable and familiar with the area.

For those who prefer the freedom of self-drive, there are numerous rental car companies available, including international brands like Europcar and Hertz, as well as local providers. Kilkenny's roads are well-maintained and signage is clear, making driving a stress-free option.

For a unique local transportation experience, consider hiring a bike or taking a leisurely river cruise on the River Nore. These options provide a different perspective of Kilkenny’s picturesque landscapes and iconic landmarks.

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