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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
Good way to start our trip around Ireland !
Lucinda_V, May 2022
Fast-track Easy Access Book of Kells Tour with Dublin Castle
Our Tour Guide was knowledgeable and fun. We enjoyed the tour very much. The Book of Kells is beautiful and the "Long Room" library is amazing.
star-5
Great history lesson! Amazing library
Catherine_G, May 2022
Fast-track Easy Access Book of Kells Tour with Dublin Castle
The library at Trinity College was amazing. Learning the history of the Book of Kells was interesting and seeing it was even better. Our tour guide Neil was great!
star-5
Wonderful tour!
Lindsey_S, May 2022
Fast-track Easy Access Book of Kells Tour with Dublin Castle
Great tour that gave you a ton of information. Definitely worth pre-booking for book of Kells as we got in super early before the crowds.
star-5
A magical place
John_T, May 2022
Fast-track Easy Access Book of Kells Tour with Dublin Castle
This was a great experience. Trinity library is just magnificent, along with the Book of Kells. And Brian From LetzGo tours was a fantastic guide.
star-5
Dublin Tour
Paul_K, May 2022
Fast-track Easy Access Book of Kells Tour with Dublin Castle
Brian did a fabulous job explaining the history behind the book of Kells. He also provided many historical facts as we walked to Dublin castle. He made the tour very interesting and pleasant!
star-5
Hatched, Batched, not yet Dispatched
Elizabeth_C, May 2022
Fast-track Easy Access Book of Kells Tour with Dublin Castle
Our guide has a background in education and was very knowledgeable. Born and raised in Dublin, he had a passion about the area. If you take this tour, ask for Jerry!
star-5
Ask for Brian when you visit the Book of Kells
Jane_H, May 2022
Fast-track Easy Access Book of Kells Tour with Dublin Castle
Brian Malloy (descendant of Brian Boru?) was an excellent guide. He kept the group moving at a comfortable pace, stopping to give us facts and anecdotes. Although it rained most of the tour, he didn't let that stop him or us. The Book of Kells is definitely a highlight of a visit to Dublin and Brian Molloy is the guide to ask for.
star-5
Best Tour in Dublin
Joanne_H, May 2022
Fast-track Easy Access Book of Kells Tour with Dublin Castle
We had a wonderful tour with Brian. Learned much about Irish history during our 2.5 hour tour. Brian was knowledgeable and fun.
star-5
Very informative tour
Mark_T, May 2022
Fast-track Easy Access Book of Kells Tour with Dublin Castle
Very informative guide John brought to life the Book of Kells. He provided a potted history of Trinity College and the Castle catering for a majority of US tourists while being sensitive to a couple of Brits in the group.
star-5
Very informative. John was great guide.
Kathleen_P, May 2022
Fast-track Easy Access Book of Kells Tour with Dublin Castle
Trinity College, Book of Kells , the walk to Dublin Castle. John the tour guide was informative and very nice and friendly. My friend and I loved it.
star-5
Book of Kells
Marty_L, May 2022
Fast-track Easy Access Book of Kells Tour with Dublin Castle
Frankie did a great job of explaining all the details of what we were seeing. We enjoyed the Book of Kells and Castle
star-5
Excellent tour
Cindy_J, May 2022
Fast-track Easy Access Book of Kells Tour with Dublin Castle
John, our guide, was very knowledgeable and personable. He covered a lot of material during our tour. We would recommend the tour. There are stairs and some walking so be prepared for that.

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: