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Dare to Discover: Outdoor Swims in County Kilkenny

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Welcome to County Kilkenny, a place where nature’s beauty intertwines seamlessly with its rich history and vibrant culture. As the sun casts its warm embrace over the rolling green landscapes, the magic of Kilkenny beckons you to embark on an extraordinary adventure. 


There’s something undeniably enchanting about swimming in natural settings. Kilkenny boasts multiple natural water bodies that provide an ideal escape from the mundane and a chance to reconnect with nature in its purest form. As you embark on your outdoor swimming adventures in County Kilkenny, it is crucial to respect and preserve the natural environment. Leave no trace of your visit, take only memories, and ensure you follow any local guidelines for safety. Preserve the pristine beauty of these locations so that others can continue to discover the wonders that Kilkenny has to offer.

River Nore – Tranquility in Flow


The River Nore flows gracefully through County Kilkenny, gracing the landscape with its gentle charm. Amidst its flow, there are several spots where you can dip your toes and take a relaxing swim. Dare to discover the hidden coves and secret spots along the River Nore that offer moments of tranquillity and immersion in the lush surroundings. From July 1st to August 31st, lifeguards are on duty at several locations along the river Nore including Thomastown and Kilkenny City, The Weir on Bleach Rd. An adult must accompany children at all times. Find out times at watersafety.ie/lifeguards.

Thomastown Weir – Nature’s Lake Retreat


Nestled in the heart of Thomastown, the Thomastown Weir offers a one-of-a-kind river retreat surrounded by picturesque landscapes. The weir creates a natural pool that invites you to take a refreshing plunge on a warm summer day. As you swim amidst the calming waters, you’ll find yourself enchanted by the charm of Thomastown and its scenic beauty. Dare to Discover the hidden allure of Thomastown Weir, where the fusion of nature and history creates an unforgettable outdoor swim experience.

Bleach Weir – An Urban Oasis


In the heart of Kilkenny City, a true urban oasis awaits: the Bleach Weir swimming area. Just a stone’s throw away from bustling streets and historic landmarks, this hidden gem offers a unique opportunity to escape the city’s heat and immerse yourself in cool, revitalising waters. The Bleach Weir is a tranquil spot on the River Nore, where the gentle flow of the river and the lush greenery surrounding the area create a soothing ambience. Dare to discover the unexpected serenity of Bleach Weir, where you can indulge in a refreshing swim while still savouring the conveniences of city life. It’s a remarkable testament to the harmonious coexistence of nature and urban living in Kilkenny, making it a favourite spot for both locals and visitors seeking a moment of relaxation amid the vibrant cityscape.


Poulanassy Waterfall – Nature’s Cascading Symphony


Venture to the southwest of County Kilkenny, and you’ll be rewarded with the mesmerising sight of Poulanassy Waterfall. Nestled amidst enchanting woodlands near the village of Mullinavat, this majestic cascade plummets gracefully into a serene pool, beckoning adventurous souls for an exhilarating outdoor swim. The invigorating rush of the waterfall’s waters combined with the lush green surroundings creates a symphony of nature’s finest melodies. Dare to discover the awe-inspiring beauty of Poulanassy Waterfall. A visit to this hidden gem promises to leave you spellbound and rejuvenated, a testament to the magic that awaits those who explore the outdoor swims of County Kilkenny.


County Kilkenny is a world of magical outdoor swims waiting to be explored. Dare to discover the hidden wonders of this enchanting county, where each swim offers a unique connection with nature and a chance to embrace calm. Unveil the beauty of Kilkenny’s lakes, rivers, and waterfalls, and create memories that will stay with you forever. So, pack your swimsuit, embark on this extraordinary journey, and let the waters of Kilkenny’s natural gems embrace you.


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Outdoor Kilkenny is a Kilkenny Tourism CLG initiative designed to enhance the tourism experience for the county. This website is concerned with promoting Kilkenny’s outdoor offering to domestic and international tourism markets.

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