Viking Triangle

Vikings – wild Scandinavian wayfarers - first arrived in Ireland in the 8th century. They looted Ireland's monasteries, battled its kings and made off with priceless treasures, religious artefacts, and with Irish people as slaves.
The Viking Triangle connects Waterford, Kilkenny and Wexford. Routes connecting these three locations make for some great driving trips, ranging from the cities themselves to all the rivers, beaches, festivals, castles and cafés in-between.
Viking legacy doesn’t just lie above ground in museums and monastic remains. It lies below ground too.

Kilkenny Castle

Once the principal seat of the Butler family, Marquesses and Dukes of Ormonde, Kilkenny Castle, located in the heart of Kilkenny City, is a 12th century castle, remodelled in Victorian times and set in riverside parklands. The magnificent castle overlooks the River Nore and has guarded this important river crossing for more than 900 years.
Visitors can explore the castle - including the Butler Art Gallery, with contemporary art exhibitions - at their leisure. In addition to an information sheet, dedicated information officers are on hand to tell more of the castle's rich history.

Smithwick's Experience

Located in Kilkenny city, a 5 minute walk from Kilkenny Castle and named as one of Lonely Planet’s top 26 must see attractions in 2015 - Smithwick’s Experience Kilkenny – is a new multi-sensory and interactive experience taking visitors on a 300 year journey through the medieval origins of brewing to the present day.
During the guided tour visitors will learn how our famous ale is made including complimentary pint of Smithwicks for visitors over the age of 18 (complimentary soft drink for under 18s) at the end of the tour.

Black Abbey

The 13th-century Black Abbey is a world of candlelit serenity, with the largest rosary window of its kind in Ireland. Containing an astonishing 10,000 pieces of ruby and sapphire glass, it tells the story of the life of Christ and it’s absolutely breathtaking.
Just a short distance from Black Abbey is Rothe House and Garden, a restored 16th-century Tudor home, where archaeologists recently found the remains of an earlier medieval townhouse (thought to be the “city pad” of the Abbot of nearby Duiske Abbey).

Bike Tours

Kilkenny Cycling Tours offers you the opportunity to visit historical and cultural sites, in a two hour tour including Kilkenny Castle, The Design Centre, Shee Alms House, The Tholsel, The Butterslip, Rothe House, The Old Courthouse, Saint Francis Abbey, The Black Abbey and Saint Canice’s Cathedral.
Alternatively try the Bike and Hike Cycle from Kilkenny city to scenic Bennettsbridge, leave your bike in Bennettsbridge and hike back on the Nore Valley Riverbank trail. Maps and safety equipment provided. Free collection and delivery of your bikes 10km in both directions.