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 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 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.
Kilkenny is also home to the Smithwick’s Brewery, but again, since we were there during the holidays, we could not take a tour.
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.
All photos included in this post were taken with my Samsung Galaxy tablet.