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The Book of Kells
The Book of Kells

The Book of Kells

Library open daily 9:30am - 5pm, winter Sundays until 4:30pm
Trinity College Dublin, College Green, Dublin, 2

The Basics

The manuscript, which tells the story of the gospels across four volumes, is on view at Trinity College’s magnificent, 18th-century Old Library. To ensure conservation, two volumes are displayed at a time, allowing visitors to view four pages during any one visit. Before viewing the book, visitors pass through an exhibition that explains the significance and importance of the manuscript and touches upon the story of its near miraculous survival. A ticket to the Book of Kells includes access to the Trinity College Library’s Long Room, where you’ll find an original copy of the 1916 Proclamation of the Irish Republic and a medieval harp. Visitors can combine a tour here with a visit to nearby Dublin Castle.

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Recent reviews from experiences in Dublin

star-5
Excellent tour
Robin_P, Aug 2022
Fast-track Easy Access Book of Kells Tour with Dublin Castle
Guide was very knowledgeable about the Book of Kells as well as Irish history. He made sure everyone had an opportunity to ask questions and pointed out lots of interesting history on the way from Trinity College to the castle gardens.
star-4
See Long Hall before it closes for renovation.
Kimberly_F, Aug 2022
Fast-track Easy Access Book of Kells Tour with Dublin Castle
The Long Hall at the Book of Kells tour was very impressive. Our guide Laura told us great stories and presented history with enthusiasm and a bit of theater. Well done.
star-5
Rain but shining on the inside
KristeySlyter_W, Aug 2022
Fast-track Easy Access Book of Kells Tour with Dublin Castle
With umbrellas overhead, we listened to our guide bring the story of the Book of Kells to life. We really enjoyed the details, the history, the beautiful library and books, as well as helping us find the Dublin Castle ‘gems,’ one being the free museum next door. Great! Wouldn’t miss this stop.
star-5
Insights into Irish History
Kathryn_H, Jul 2022
Fast-track Easy Access Book of Kells Tour with Dublin Castle
What a wonderful tour. Our guide was knowledgable about the Book of Kells and Trinity. Lots of little details I did not know. I was going to skip the Castle tour (I had done the paid tour the day before) but out guide did such a nice job of storytelling the events of Irish Independence, glad I stuck around.
star-5
Great tour and guide!
Terry_S, Jun 2022
Fast-track Easy Access Book of Kells Tour with Dublin Castle
Jerry did a fabulous job guiding us, answering questions and giving such rich history and insight. His history as a teacher were evident. Also gave tips of things to see and safety advice during our time in Dublin.
star-5
Spectacular and Memorable
Jennifer_B, Jul 2022
Fast-track Easy Access Book of Kells Tour with Dublin Castle
We really enjoyed the history we learned about! The guide was very knowledgeable and the book of Kells was breathtaking
star-5
Great tour with lots of history.
Christopher_I, Jul 2022
Fast-track Easy Access Book of Kells Tour with Dublin Castle
The book of Kells is amazing as is the long room. Great tour guide who is a student of history. Great tour.
star-5
Great tour of Dublin Castle and Book of Kells
Jeffrey_C, Jul 2022
Fast-track Easy Access Book of Kells Tour with Dublin Castle
The street tour of Dublin on the way to the Dublin Castle was an excellent way to learn more about the city and its rich history! The Book of Kells part of the tour was incredible! Antonio was very knowledgeable and had a great sense of humor.
star-5
Soaking up history!☘️
Wendy_R, Aug 2022
Fast-track Easy Access Book of Kells Tour with Dublin Castle
Moira was very knowledgeable and personable! She really maximized the time we had to see Trinity, Book of Kells exhibits and on walking tour to Dublin Castle pointed out numerous points of interest along the way and shared lots of history and perspective. Just what we hoped for. Wendy ☘️🌹
star-5
Recommend this tour!
Nicholas_H, Jul 2022
Fast-track Easy Access Book of Kells Tour with Dublin Castle
I got Antonio was great! Gave us so much more when we walked through the tower of London and through the book of Kells. He was so very helpful as in places to eat as well as other place to visit and experience while we were there. Just a great guide and person all the way around!
star-5
Book of Kells.
Arlene_E, Jul 2022
Fast-track Easy Access Book of Kells Tour with Dublin Castle
The Book of Kells was amazing to see. Viator is a wonderful way to book tours. Thank you for a great experience.
star-5
One day in Dublin
Ron_L, Aug 2022
Fast-track Easy Access Book of Kells Tour with Dublin Castle
We were for one day and Neil made it a wonderful experience with his knowledge and jokes. He took us to places we would have never found.
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Things to Know Before You Go

  • The Book of Kells is popular and long lines can form. Buy a ticket in advance to avoid waiting around to get inside.

  • Explore independently or sign up for a guided early-access tour to skip the queue and inspect the manuscript without the crowds.

  • The Old Library is wheelchair accessible.

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How to Get There

Trinity College is located on the south side of Dublin city center, at the northern end of Grafton Street. Take the Luas Red line to Abbey Street, the Luas Green Line to Stephen’s Green, or the DART train to Pearse Station. Find the library entrance adjacent to Fellow’s Square, opposite the Arts Building.

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When to Get There

The Book of Kells site is open daily with varying hours by season (May to September: Monday to Saturday 8:30am to 5pm and Sunday 9:30am to 5pm; October to April: Monday to Saturday 9:30am to 5pm and Sunday noon to 4:30pm). The book is a major Dublin attraction and attracts many travelers, particularly during summer. Visit in the morning or later in the afternoon to avoid the biggest crowds.

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Inside the Medieval Manuscript

The manuscript’s pages are filled with colorful, elaborate drawings. Some are adorned with swirling Celtic knots, while others are covered with drawings of animals such as lions, snakes, and peacocks, as well as mythical beasts and human figures. Among the most famous pages of the medieval manuscript is the one known as Chi Rho, which is said to signify Christ.

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Frequently Asked Questions
The answers provided below are based on answers previously given by the tour provider to customers’ questions.
Q:
What are the nearest attractions to The Book of Kells?
Q:
What else should I know about attractions in Dublin?
A:
As well as visiting the The Book of Kells, check out these trip ideas to make the most of your visit: