Our customised mural of Kilkenny is now a Free Postcard

Free postcards of our customised mural of Kilkenny available at the Hostel

Free postcards of our customised mural of Kilkenny available at the Hostel

We love our customised mural of Kilkenny that’s painted on the wall at our Reception and so do all our guests judging by how many photos are taken of it and all the comments made about how cool it is :-)

So that got us thinking..why don’t we print postcards and give them out free to our lovely guests. Some people keep them as a souvenir and others send them back home to their friends and family. The unique thing about this postcard is that it is customised according to all our favourite things to see and do in Kilkenny. It has great little depictions of our best liked places to eat, drink and party plus all the great attractions on offer in our medieval city. Chances are if you stayed with us you’ll have visited loads of these places! Did you check out The Hole in the Wall for instance..well it’s there on the map! Did you climb the Round Tower at St Canice’s Cathedral..it’s there too. How about the Monday night Traditional Music session in Cleeres pub..check it out just opposite the Hostel.

Want your very own Postcard of all the great things Kilkenny has to offer, one that’s illustrated in a cool quirky style by artist Fuchsia MacAree? Then pick one up for free here at the Hostel Reception and send it on it’s journey around the world #WishYouWereHere!

 

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Want Free Tea and Coffee in the Hostel? Then put the kettle on!

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Do you know we have Free Tea and Coffee in the Hostel Kitchen for you to enjoy anytime of the day (or night)?

There’s tasty Irish Tea, Instant Coffee (if you’re in a hurry!) or best of all there’s delicious Ground Coffee to use in the stovetop Expresso Maker or Cafetiere. That way you can start the day with a rich, strong, full bodied caffeine shot to put a pep in your step and set you up right for a day of sightseeing. Or you can relax in the sitting room with a good book by the open fire and a lovely warm cup of Irish Tea. There’s nothing like it! Of course there’s sugar too if you want it sweet and cold milk in the fridge.

Now we know Coffee lovers are Expresso making aficionados and they know their way around using the tools of the trade. For others however the Stovetop Expresso maker is a puzzling thing. How does it work? Where do you put the ground coffee? What do you do with it then? Check this little video for the low down on how to get a great cup of coffee:

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People Who Stay in Hostels: Conor

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There are all kinds of people who stay in Hostels, backgrounds vary as do nationality, age and reason for being in a particular place at a particular time. We thought it would be nice to give a snapshot of the people who are staying with us, why they are here and how they have found the Hostel experience.

First up is Conor who is 21 years old and from Dublin and is studying zoology at University College Cork. Conor is staying for 7 weeks while he works as an intern at the Reptile Village in the lovely little village of Gowran in County Kilkenny. He cycles the 30km round trip each day and his work placement involves feeding the animals, cleaning cages, giving tours, handling animals and more cleaning! On the day we chatted he was getting the snakes ready to be taken on a road trip to be filmed by an Irish TV station. This involved packing into boxes 2 Burmese Pythons, 3 Boa Constrictors, a Carpet Python that tried to bite and a slippery Anna Conda. One of the highlights of his placement has been giving tours to kids.

Conor describes The Reptile Village as 6000 square feet of teeth and claws! In their own words here’s the low down on what the Reptile Village  do:

 

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We are Ireland’s only Reptile Zoo, displaying snakes, lizards, tortoise, turtles, crocodiles, alligators, caiman, spiders, scorpions, frogs, salamanders and more. Reptile Village offers an interactive experience where you can get a little closer and even handle some of our animals! 

Be sure to visit when you come to Kilkenny.

Check them out here www.reptilevillage.net

And how has Conor found the Hostel Experience?

In his own words “excellent” Aww thanks Conor! He said he’s enjoyed meeting people hanging out with some French Canadians in particular and having great chats with Missy, one of our American guests who lived in Cuba for years.

And what next for Conor once the work placement is finished? He would love love love to secure a full time job at the Reptile Village after he finishes his final year in college. Hopefully we will see him back in Kilkenny very soon.

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We Won! IEDR Optimise Prize Winner 2014

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So delighted to be announced as one of the winners of this years IEDR Optimise fund and to be awarded 10,000 Euros worth of professional consultancy, training and website development courtesy of the good people at IEDR (Irish Domain Name Registry).

According to the announcement by IEDR each of the 15 winners:

will receive tailored e-commerce advice, strategies and practical support to begin upgrading their online presence or e-commerce functionality. The winning companies will be better placed to utilise the Internet’s 24 hour sales and marketing channel to gain a competitive advantage in today’s online marketplace.

We are super excited to start working with IEDR and to develop a new website and have a fantastic online presence :-)

Congratulating this year’s OPTIMISE winners, Mr. David Curtin, Chief Executive of IE Domain Registry, said: “Ireland has a terrific brand in the .ie domain name and it’s imperative that Irish businesses use it to fulfil their potential online, which means embracing e-commerce technologies. With the OPTIMISE Fund, IEDR wants to help Irish small businesses achieve growth online. We know that companies in Ireland remain slow to capitalise on the Internet as a sales channel, and that small companies often need a helping hand to do so. I congratulate this year’s winners and look forward to helping them fulfil their enormous online potential with the OPTIMISE Fund.”

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Guest Post: French and living in Kilkenny.. what’s it like?

Astrid outside Kilkenny Tourist Hostel

Astrid outside Kilkenny Tourist Hostel

 Hello everybody,

I am Astrid de Nogaret from France and I am an intern in Kilkenny Tourist Hostel. I am doing communication and promotion of Kilkenny Tourist Hostel.

Today, I would like to talk to you about my experience in Kilkenny City and in Kilkenny Tourist Hostel for 2 months now. Kikenny City is a very brilliant city to live a cultural experience, and meet a lot of people.

Indeed, in Kilkenny City you will discover a lot of interesting places. Kilkenny City is a medevial city where you will able to visit, among others, her famous castle, her famous St Canice’s cathedral, her many churchs, and her famous Smithwicks Brewery.

In the evening, there are many pubs in Kilkenny City to spend a really good time, listening to traditionnal irish music, watching an irish dance demonstration, tasting famous Smithwicks beer with an irish meal, and meeting Irish people so proud of their country and their traditions.

 Kilkenny Tourist Hostel is a really nice place for meeting a lot of travellers from different countries such as France, Switzerland, Germany, USA, Australia, Canada … You could discuss together in living room to share your different experiences of your trip in Ireland, and discover Kilkenny City together as well.

 Don’t be afraid of opening the Kilkenny Tourist Hostel’s door, you will leave Kilkenny City with a lot of memories.

 

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The Smithwick’s Experience Kilkenny

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This view of Smithwicks Brewery from Kilkenny Tourist Hostel is soon to be a thing of the past. After 300 years of making Smithwicks in Kilkenny the brewing of this rudy red ale has been relocated to Dublin.

Not all is lost however as come July 31st the brand new Smithwick’s Experience opens in Parliament street (just a few doors up from us!) Promising to immerse the visitor in the brewing experience, recount the brewing tradition from its medieval monastic origins to the arrival of the Smithwicks family and the ensuing 300+ years, and of course provide  a taste of Kilkenny’s finest pint.

Brewery Tours operate 7 days a week, are over an hour in duration and run regularly throughout the day. There’s loads of interactive elements to the tour so even the kids should be entertained. Brought to you by the same good people who run The Guinness Storehouse in Dublin we are really looking forward to the Smithwick’s Experience being an authentic, enjoyable and exciting look at Kilkenny proud brewing tradition.

If you also want to see how an arts collective are marking the end of brewing Smithwicks in Kilkenny check “The Brewery Project” on facebook.

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Happy Feet: Swing Dancing in Kilkenny

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Happy Feet host a Swing Dance Club in Kilkenny every Wednesday evening at the Left Bank Bar on the High street in Kilkenny

If you fancy learning how to swing, jive, lindy hop and jitterbug then it’s the place to be. You can go on your own or with friends, you can be a complete beginner or an experienced dancer. The music is great too and the atmopshere is fun and relaxed.

Here’s what Happy Feet have to say about the night:
Learn the fun and exciting vintage dances of the jazz age, socialise exercise and enjoy the music.
Dance classes followed by social dancing to dj’s and live bands
9 pm : Beginners class, the no partner required drop in beginners class is a relaxed and fun introduction to swing dancing. we will take you from never danced before to social dancing with anyone in one class

10 pm : Social dancing, practice your moves or just come an enjoy the live music from swingin bluecats

8 Pm : Improvers class, learn the secrets to lindy hop, balboa, blues and east coast swing and prepare for the dance trance.

10 euros 

Check this for inspiration:

 
 

We think it’s a brilliant way to spend an evening in Kilkenny. Why not come back for the Kilkenny Roots Festival every May Bank Holiday weekend and show off your moves on the dance floor :-)

 

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Kilkenny Tourist Hostel’s New Look

 

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The painters have been hard at work giving the exterior of Kilkenny Tourist Hostel a new look. We’ve changed the colour to a lovely soft grey which we think looks amazing with the red windows and the big red door. Of course we wouldn’t ever  change the colour of the entrance as all the locals in Kilkenny know us as the Hostel with the red door. It makes it handy if any guests get a little bit lost when looking for us and ask the advice of someone they happen to meet along the way :-)

Our big red door definitely stands out. Indeed it’s a feature of Georgian architecture (mid 18th to mid 19th century) that these doors were painted bold colours and adorned with brass fixtures, knobs and knockers. The fanlights overhead also let sunlight in to illuminate the hallways of these grand houses. There are lots of examples of grand Georgian houses with brightly coloured doors in Kilkenny as well as places like Merrion Square in Dublin. Why not come see for yourself?

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Hostel Lockers and yes they’re Free

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We know it’s important when you’re travelling to have somewhere safe to keep all your valuables so you can leave your stuff in the Hostel and go out and about exploring the town. Different Hostels  have different set ups when it comes to where you can do this and how much it’s going to cost you.

Our  Hostel Lockers are shiny and brand new and come in different sizes so you can put things like documents or phones  in the small ones, laptops or daypacks in the medium sized ones or bigger bags in the larger ones.

And best of all they are free to use!! You just need to bring your own padlock with you or you can purchase or hire one from our Reception.

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Ariel photograph of Kilkenny Castle and Park

ariel photo of Kilkenny by Ed Murphy

 

What an amazing ariel photograph of Kilkenny Castle and park in all its glory. You can really get a feel for the scale of this majestic building and how it sits above the river Nore and occupies such an commanding position in the ancient city of Kilkenny. The Castle dates back to the 12th Century and looking at the photograph you  trace the different architectural styles employed in the Castle’s remodelling and extensions since the 1300s. These changes marked the Castle’s transformation from a medieval fortress to a grand and lavish home.

Surrounding Kilkenny Castle is the Castle Park which is 50 acres of formal gardens, parkland, walking tracks, woodland, ponds and playgrounds. It’s a really nice place to wander around on a sunny day or to sit and read, lay around or eat lunch.

In the forefront of the photograph you can see a glimpse of the old Castle stables that are now known as The Design Centre, and  house craft workshops, a lovely emporium selling Irish crafts and wares, a cafe and the National Craft Gallery of Ireland.

 

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