Tag Archives: Kilkenny

Kilkenny and the Galaxy

On our second day of the Great Ireland Trip 2012/2013, Maureen and I headed back East, and stayed in another river town with a castle, Kilkenny.

Kilkenny Castle, Ireland

Kilkenny Castle was built along the River Nore in 1195, and it has been well kept and extensively renovated over the years.  Then in 1967, the castle and all of its surrounding lands were sold to the people of Kilkenny.  The price was a mere 50 pounds.

Today, Kilkenny Castle is a public park, with an extensive front lawn with trails and fields, and a back side with an elaborate garden.  It is my understanding that inside the castle, there is also a grand collection of art work, but because we were there during the holidays, the inside of the castle was closed.  I guess we will just have to take another trip.

Kilkenny Castle, Ireland

Kilkenny also has a wonderful nightlife, with many taverns, restaurants and stores scattered among the tiny streets.  Although on the night we were in town it was St. Stephen’s Day, so the crowd we were told was a little younger than normal.  But we still managed to find a nice place to eat, and a pub or two to enjoy a few pints.

The Streets of Klikenny

Kilkenny is also home to the Smithwick’s Brewery, but again, since we were there during the holidays, we could not take a tour.

Smithwick's Brewery, Kilkenny, Ireland

For anyone who may have sampled a bottle of Smithwick’s, you will notice the label brandishes a simple castle motif.  No doubt inspired by the centerpiece of its hometown, Kilkenny Castle.

Kilkenny Castle

All photos included in this post were taken with my Samsung Galaxy tablet.

Home Again – The Return from Ireland

We just got back last night, and as soon as we dropped our bags at the front door, Maureen and I lapsed into a coma like state, and slept for the next twelve hours.  The trip was a success.  I am sure I will post much more later, but here is a quick retrospect of our trip to Ireland.

We started with an eight-hour layover in Manchester, were we got to take a look at Manchester Cathedral.

Manchester Cathedral

Next stop was Limerick.  This photo is of the Treaty Stone, marking the Treaty of Limerick in 1691.  Limerick Castle is in the background across the river.

The Treaty Stone

From there it was a quick drive to Kilkenny to see another castle, and a really neat town.

Kilkenny Castle

Next up was five days in Dublin with my family.  There will be a lot more on that later.  Pictured below is Kilmainham Gaol, the old Irish jail.

Kilmainham Gaol

On New Year’s Day, we drove up to one of our favorite cities the last time we were in Ireland, and that was Belfast.  We arrived after dark, and as we wandered the city center we found a sculpture entitled, “The Spirit of Belfast.”

The Spirit of Belfast

Our final destination was Bushmills, although we did return to Belfast for one more night to meet up with friends before we had to head home.  This is St. John the Baptist Church.

St. John the Baptist Church