In a town so full of castles, shops and fantastic pubs, it is easy to forget we are surrounded by the beautiful Irish countryside. Enjoy the great outdoors with some of our recommended walks, hikes and cycles.
This leisurely walk takes less than an hour and is a great way to see more of the River Nore and the surrounding area. The trail follows the river as it flows through the city of Kilkenny, joining up with the Nore Valley walk at Ossory Bridge. It’s a great walk to do mid-day or after dinner in the evening to aid digestion. It is classed as an easy walk so is suitable for all levels of fitness and you can take it at your own pace.
This walk takes a little longer and is suitable for those without any walking difficulties. The walk starts under Ossory Bridge in Kilkenny city and trails through the Nore Valley taking in the beautiful sights and sounds of nature along the way. If you’re very lucky you may spot a swift, a heron, kingfisher or an otter on the riverbank. The trail takes approximately two hours to complete at a relaxed pace.
For those more experienced walkers, try one of Kilkenny’s more difficult hiking trails. Frochan's Loop follows forestry roads and woodland tracks in Carrickinane Woods and takes you to near the top of Tory Hill with views of the countryside below. The loop is a hike of moderate difficulty and will take approximately 1.5hrs.
Graiguenamanagh trail is a difficult terrain taking in minor roadways, forestry tracks and hillside paths and takes approximately 7 hours. Make sure you come prepared for this one with plenty of water, hiking boots, rain gear and a charged mobile phone.
This route links some of Kilkenny’s most historic and culturally significant towns together and is suitable for moderately fit, experienced cyclists. The route is perfectly planned so you can stop for a cup of tea (or a pint) in many little towns along the way. Along the way, you’ll get stunning views of Brandon Hill, the River Barrow and the River Nore.
The most challenging of the cycle routes in Kilkenny, the North Loop is suited to very experienced, self-sufficient cyclists. The route winds its way through 80kms of varied terrains and scenery and passes close to the Dunmore caves if you fancy a cultural break. It also passes through beautiful towns and villages like Freshford and Castlecomer. Come very prepared for this one.
You can never be guaranteed good weather when spending time outdoors but you can be guaranteed a great night's sleep in Aspect Hotel Kilkenny to prepare you for the day ahead! We are conveniently located on the outskirts of the city for a great day of outdoor adventures. For more information, contact our friendly reservations staff.