This is a wonderful castle and it is in absolute perfect shape including the surrounding walls and the castle proper. Although, it is kind of like those transitional castles that were fortresses transformed into elaborate manor houses. It maintains characteristics of both.
And one of the special things about this castle is the city it is situated in, Kilkenny. It is a beautiful medieval town. And they often have arts festivals there. I just happened to be there while a festival was going on.
Kilkenny Castle dates back to the 13th century and it was privately owned by the Butler family until 1967 when ownership was transferred to the country. And the roots of this castle actually go back to 1172 when Strongbow built a wooden fort on the location. Today it is more of a 17th century chateau.
If you are thinking about visiting this site I highly recommend it for more than just the castle. There is great shopping, a beautiful medieval town and even a train ride around for tourism.
This is a look at the castle from the front. There is a large and lavish garden grounds that goes back behind us. It has a peculiar three sided shape to it. It used to be a four sided fortress but one of the sides was destroyed by Oliver Cromwells army. And,
This is a view around the other side of the castle.
This is what I mean by Kilkenny being a medieval town. Lots of cobblestone streets just like this. Wonderful and very old European.
Another interesting attraction in Kilkenny is the Rothe House.They were a wealthy family and you get to see how they lived hundreds of years ago. and there is a small historical museum inside the house with some interesting artifacts.
Here is a look inside the Rothe House.
A few more things about Kilkenny
It has a wonderful shopping center right across from the castle and it has a unique little train that rides on the streets in a tour. You can take the train around the city and learn about the various landmarks and history of the city.
Castles are the most familiar medieval landmark across the Irish countryside. Their often romantic appearance belies their turbulent history and their lore abounds in stories of sieges, betrayals and daring escapes. From the earliest stone castles such as Dublin Castle to the fortified manor houses such as Red Hugh O'Donnell's Donegal Castle, each has a fascinating and individual story to tell. Castles of Ireland brings the reader on a tour of more than sixty castles, from the biggest and most well-known to dramatic and atmospheric ruins which had a role to play in shaping Ireland's history.
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