Festivals & Events in Kilkenny | Kilkenny Tourism

Festivals & Events in Kilkenny


Kilkenny’s intimate size and wonderfully atmospheric venue make it a magical location for the many festivals that fill the calendar each year. With music spilling onto the streets and venues within walking distance of each other, the whole city celebrates. For festivals and events, Kilkenny has it all.

As well as world-renowned festivals such as Kilkenny Arts Festival and The Cat Laughs Comedy Festival, there are many smaller events happening throughout the year in both city and county.  From horse-racing to conker festivals, it’s a great way to experience some local colour and very unusual traditions. 

Whatever your heart desires, open it to Kilkenny.

Kilkenny City

St Valentine’s weekend will see Kilkenny International Literary Festival’s second event – ‘Crimes of Passion’ at Billy Byrne’s on John Street.


RED MILLS Country Style Stakes Launched at Gowran Racecourse

Kilkenny City

Hosted by twice-Oscar nominated Kilkenny animation studio, Cartoon Saloon, Kilkenny Animated is a unique and industry leading festival celebrating the best in international animation.

TradFest Kilkenny
Kilkenny City

15th to 19th March 2018 (TBC) - In 2018, the 6th Kilkenny Tradfest will take over the city for a St Patrick’s Weekend full of craic agus ceol. The festival offers an amazing mix of live music performances, music and dance workshops & family activities.

St Patrick's Day Festival Kilkenny
Kilkenny City

March 2018 - Activities over the weekend, include the St Patricks Day Parade, Vintage Fairground, a visit to the new Medieval Mile Museum, Live Music and Street Performances. 

Smithwick’s Kilkenny Roots Festival 2018
Kilkenny City

4th to 7th May 2018 - The festival features a mix of Irish and International acts from USA, Canada and the UK.  In addition to 20 ticketed show, over 60 free performances will take place on the Music Trail in venues throughout the City.

Kilkenny Cat Laughs Comedy Festival 2018
Kilkenny City

1st to 4th June 2018 - Cat Laughs has grown from a small event comprising a handful of shows in 1995 to an internationally acclaimed festival which showcases the very best in Irish & international comedy acts in June. The festival attracts in excess of 30,000 visitors.

Heritage Week 2018 in Kilkenny

August 2018, Dates to be confirmed - From Exhibitions, Guided Tours of Kilkenny Castle, Shankill Castle, Dunmore Caves... to a Hawkeye Bird of Prey Experience ... there is something for everyone to enjoy in Heritage Week. 90+ Events (most are free!) throughout city & county.

Kilkenny City

9th to 19th August 2018 - Now entering its 45th year. Features following art forms; Theatre & Dance, Classical Music, Music, Wired, Street, Literature, Visual Art and Craft.

Kilkenny City

October Bank Holiday weekend 2018 - Enjoy food markets, cookery demonstrations, food art, food debates and discussions as well as lots of dining events in local hotels, restaurants, cafes and bars. Embraces all sectors of the food community from artisan producers to restaurateurs.