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It is impossible to miss this outstanding construction.
It is the most prominent landmark in this compact and beautiful city and is the most visited attraction in County Kilkenny and up there with the top tourist attractions in Ireland.
Kilkenny Castle has been an important site since Strongbow constructed the first castle, probably a wooden structure, in the 12th century.
William the Earl Marshall built the first stone castle on the site, which was completed in 1213.
This was a square-shaped castle with towers at each corner; three of these original four towers survive to this day.
The Butler families were long time inhabitants of the Castle through many generations right up to 1935.
The family bought the Castle in 1391 and lived there throughout wars, feuds and a variety of rulers of Ireland until 1935, quite a remarkable feat considering the political events and various wars and invasions that took place over that period of time.
The property was given to the Nation in 1967 and the castle and grounds are now managed by the Office of Public Works.
Today the beautiful gardens and parkland adjoining the castle are open to the public and the Parade Tower is a conference centre.
The Ormond Collection is the most recent publication about Kilkenny Castle and it maybe purchased by mail order from the Kilkenny Castle Bookshop.
The Butler Gallery Art collection is also housed in the castle.
Allow at least four hours to explore this magnificent building and grounds which are open from 10am to 5pm daily