“Symbol of Norman occupation, built in 1195”

Kilkenny Castle was originally built by Strongbow as a wooden castle on that site overlooking the River Nore in 1172. For over 20 years later around in 1195, his son-in-law the Earl of Pembroke built the first stone castle. Three of this castle's original four towers survive today.

Kilkenny Castle sets in the heart of Kilkenny city used to control a fording-point of the River Nore and the junction of several routeways. It was a symbol of Norman occupation and in its original thirteenth-century condition it would have formed an important element of the defences of the town with four large circular corner towers and a massive ditch, part of which can still be seen today on the Parade. Over the eight centuries of its existence, many additions and alterations have been made to the frabic of the building, making Kilkenny Castle today a complex structure of various architectural styles.

The original Anglo-Norman stone castle was built for William Marshal, 4th Earl of Pembroke (c.1146-1219) during the first decade of the thirteenth century. Kilkenny Castle later became the principal Irish residence of the powerful Butler family for almost 600 years. The Butler ownership began when James (c.1360-1405), 3rd Earl of Ormond, purchased the castle in c.1391, and lasted until 1967 when Arthur, 6th Marquess of Ormonde (1893-1971), presented it to the people of Kilkenny in return for a token payment of £50.

The property was transferred to the people of Kilkenny in 1967 for £50 and the castle and grounds are now managed by the Office of Public Works. The gardens and parkland adjoining the castle are open to the public. The Parade Tower is a conference venue. Awards and conferring ceremonies of the graduates of "Kilkenny Campus" of National University of Ireland, Maynooth have been held there since 2002.

Opening Time:

  • October to February 09.30 to 16.30
  • March 09.30 to 17.00
  • April and May 09.30 to 17.30
  • June to August 09.00 to 17.30
  • September 09.30 to 17.30

Admission Fee:

  • Child / Student € 4.00
  • Senior (60+)/Group:(20+ Adults/Seniors) € 6.00
  • Adult € 8.00
  • Family € 20.00
  • Last tour visit at 16:000 hrs. (by guided tours taking 1 hour / visit)
  • Groups of 10 people and more must be pre-booked.


  • Non-flash photography permitted for personal use only, filming/videoing not allowed.
  • Drone is not allowed.

Kilkenny Castle


The Parade, Collegepark, Kilkenny, Ireland Map

List 0 review | art & culture,attractions,Royal palace,archaeological site

Closed today

Mon9.00 - 17.00
Tue9.00 - 17.00
Wed9.00 - 17.00
Thu9.00 - 17.00
Fri9.00 - 17.00
Sat9.00 - 17.00
Sun9.00 - 17.00

+353 56 770 4100




Manage your trips


All reviews

(List 0 review)

Nearby Places

Smithwick Experience Killkenny Smithwick Experience Killkenny (List 0 review)

ห่าง 0.54 กิโลเมตร

Rothe House and Garden Rothe House and Garden (List 0 review)

ห่าง 0.56 กิโลเมตร

Nearby restaurants

Smithwick Experience Killkenny Smithwick Experience Killkenny (List 0 review)

ห่าง 0.54 กิโลเมตร