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.

Medieval Week Kilkenny

17th to 26th April - Visitors are invited to step back in time and join in epic events including royal feasts, tales of knights, workshops, historic tours and a raucous medieval market. The city and county will be transformed into a medieval hotspot.

Smithwick’s Kilkenny Roots Festival 2015
Kilkenny City

1st to 4th May - 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.

Sky Cat Laughs Comedy Festival 2015
Kilkenny City

28th May to 1st June - 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.

Kilkenny International Gospel Festival
Kilkenny City

19th to 21st June - The festival brings with it workshops hosted by experts in the field on song writing, performance and running a successful Gospel Choir, public performances and gospel choir tours of the region. The festival provides the ideal opportunity to perform in fantastic locations, explore the South East of Ireland and indulge in your love of Gospel Music.

Abhainn Ri Festival 2015 in Callan, Co.Kilkenny

26th June to 5th July - Abhainn Rí Festival is an annual community festival for Callan and its rural hinterland. The festival will offer an array of fun, educational and inspiring workshops, experiences and events that will cater for all age groups and abilities. Diverse and extensive programme will also include events and activities in music, food, comedy, sport, heritage, ecology and religion.

Kilkenny Arts Festival 2015
Kilkenny City

Now entering its 41st year. Features following art forms; Theatre & Dance, Classical Music, Music, Wired, Street, Literature, Visual Art and Craft. Committed to the presentation of a unique, distinctive and inspiring programme.

The Irish National Sheepdog Trials

13th to 15th August - The Irish National Sheepdog Trial is coming to Johnstown, Co. Kilkenny! See the 150 best irish sheepdogs working Brian Nicholson's sheep at the beautiful site of Ken Whiteford's field in Tullanvoolty!

The Iverk Show on Saturday 22nd August in Piltown, County Kilkenny

22nd August - Attracting over 20,000 visitors the Iverk Show is Ireland’s oldest and one of the largest one day agricultural and family shows  and with over 400 trade exhibits the outdoor machinery and commercial stands create a wonderful atmosphere.

Kilkenny Fashion Week 2015
Kilkenny City

Mid-October - With a fashion schedule and bumper fringe programme to suit every age and taste,  Kilkenny Fashion Week will show that Kilkenny is a premier shopping destination and showcase it's city centre shopping.

Rockfall Festival Kilkenny Music 2015
Kilkenny City

23rd to 26th October - The 27th Rockfall Festival takes place over the October Bank Holiday weekend in venues throughout Kilkenny City. All the local bands play free of charge and all monies raised from the Festival are donated to the O’Neill Centre in Kilkenny