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Kilkenny Castle

The Irish People Newspaper’s castle of the week

Kilkenny Castle has been chosen as the Irish People Newspaper’s castle of the week. Headed by the Palace of Versailles, Kilkenny Castle comes in at number 8 in a list of the planets 10 finest and most beautiful castles. Let us know which Irish Castle you like best. Then we can create our own ‘Top 10’ Irish castles.


Kilkenny Castle stands where “Strongbow” Richard de Clare, 2nd Earl of Pembroke built the first castle in the 12th century. The year 1260 saw the completion of the original stone castle where Strongbows first castle – most likely a wooden structure – had stood.  The 1260 stone castle was square with four towers, one at each corner. It was built by the husband of Strongbows daughter and heiress Isabel. Today, three of the four original towers are still part of Kilkenny Castle.

The Butlers of Ormonde

Following seizure by the crown in 1381, the Butler family bought the castle in 1391. Having arrived in Ireland with the Normans the Butler’s of Kilkenny Castle became very powerful and ruled a large area of land from Kilkenny for centuries. They became known as the Butlers of Ormonde.

In 1935, the Butlers vacated the castles and its contents were sold for £6,000. The castle then lay abandoned for more than thirty years.  Arthur Butler, 6th Marquess and 24th Earl of Ormonde sold the deteriorating castle to Kilkenny City’s Castle Restoration Committee in 1967 for the nominal sum of £50. Kilkenny Castle from 1967 has belonged to the people of Kilkenny.

Kilkenny Castle Today

Today Kilkenny Castle stands as majestic as ever in all its splendour overlooking the river Nore. It’s surrounded by beautiful parkland with a rose garden and a fountain ideally suited for relaxation with a pond the home to water hens and wild ducks. It’s a haven for tourists wishing to view its splendour, take a tour of its magnificently restored interior and to experience the atmosphere and ambience of its rich historic setting. It is a popular walking destination a beautiful setting for relaxation, picnics, exercise, and family outings

The castles interior rooms have been tastefully and accurately restored and preserved.  Visitors can wander through the castle where they will experience the Chinese withdrawing room, the state dining room, the grand staircase, the tapestry room, the anteroom and library. They can wander through the bedroom corridor and the picture gallery wing which can be seen just like they were when the Butler’s were living in the castle. If you haven’t been to Kilkenny castle treat yourself to a unique multifaceted experience not to be missed.


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