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St Canice's Cathedral & Round Tower

The Round Tower in Kilkenny is one of the only two round towers in the country that people may climb

  • 6 hours
  • From 5,50 ευρώ
  • The Close, Coach Road, Kilkenny City, R95 V63H, Ireland

Service Description

The Round Tower in Kilkenny is one of the only two round towers in the country that people may climb, the round tower at St Canice’s Cathedral provides a magnificent view of Kilkenny and the surrounding area on a clear day. The structure is 30m (100ft) high, tapering from 4.5 to 3.3m (15 to 11ft) in diameter. When the tower was originally built it would have had a conical top, adding a further 5m (18ft) to its height. The present day lack of this conical top allows for access to a safe viewing platform at the tower’s summit, which may be reached via a series of internal ladders comprising seven floors and 121 steps in total. Each year, many local archaeologists, architects and town planners – as well as thousands of visitors – climb the round tower not only to climb up through a unique heritage, but to view a beautiful city and stunning landscape. The Kilkenny Round Tower - a particularly Irish feature - were built at major religious sites as places of refuge for body and treasure, during the times of the Viking raids from the end of the 8th century. St Canice’s round tower offers a breathtaking 360 degree view of the surrounding countryside from its summit - hardly surprising since that was the other reason they were built. The presence of the round tower here is the clearest sign of the antiquity of St Canice’s as an important religious site. There is a reference that suggests a mid-9th century date for it, making it the oldest standing structure in the City. It carries the same protected status as the Cathedral, and similarly, is of national importance. Considering that it was built over fairly fresh burials and that the foundations are remarkably shallow, it is not so much the 0.7m (2ft) off-plumb that is remarkable, but the fact that it has remained standing at all! October to April (Weather Permitting) Monday to Saturday Open from 10.00am to 5.00pm (Last Climb 4.30pm) Sunday Closed May-September (Weather Permitting) Monday to Saturday The Tower is open from 9.00am - 6.00pm (Last Climb 5.30pm.) Sundays The Tower is open from 1.00pm to 6.00pm (Last climb 5.30pm.) In the summer season, please note that the Round Tower is very busy from11am to 4pm . Best time to climb is from 9am to 11am. The tower remains closed Sundays mornings due to worship in the Cathedral.

Upcoming Sessions

Contact Details


O'Briens Depot, Garryduff, County Limerick, Ireland

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