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“Modern Irish History comes alive” 5 of 5 stars
Review of Kilmainham Gaol

Kilmainham Gaol
Inchicore Road | Kilmainham, Dublin 8, Ireland
01 453 5984
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$76*
and up
Ranked #6 of 218 Attractions in Dublin
Type: Historic Sites, Specialty Museums, Cultural
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Owner description: This bleak old jail was notorious in the 19th century for its harsh treatment of prisoners.
Connecticut
Top Contributor
61 reviews 61 reviews
37 attraction reviews
Reviews in 23 cities Reviews in 23 cities
31 helpful votes 31 helpful votes
“Modern Irish History comes alive”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed December 25, 2013

This is a must for anyone interested in Irish history, the Rebellion, Irish national heros or Victorian prisons. The modest admission fee includes a guided tour (required) and access to the museum.

Visited December 2013
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Glen Ellyn, Illinois
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22 reviews 22 reviews
5 attraction reviews
Reviews in 16 cities Reviews in 16 cities
57 helpful votes 57 helpful votes
“Kilmainham Gaol -- Phenomenal Historical Site and Tour”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed December 25, 2013

This tour was a real highlight of our trip. This jail, now a museum, was where many Irish were imprisoned and some executed after the Easter Rising and during the war of independence and the Irish civil war. I recommend that everyone take this tour. Our tour guide was wonderful and there were lots of attentive listeners. He did a phenomenal job telling moving stories from the history of Ireland in the 19th and 20th centuries and how it was related to the jail. The presentation was made in a loud voice and clear language with no difficulty following his slight Gaelic accent. The tour was at an ideal pace with no rushing and no fact overload. It was clear, logical, relevant and often moving.

It was cold in the prison and partly the tour takes place in the prison yard. Dress properly.

Do not skip the warm and interesting museum. The presentation gives more information on the historical and political aspects of the events you hear about on the tour.

My rule of thumb is - save money whenever possible. The tour cost only 6 euros and it was money and time very well spent. I highly recommend it for tourists of all ages.

After the tour our tour guide did not beg or even mention tipping him, which is very much unlike the NY tour guys. It made me respect this young man with dignity.

Sometimes paying with a card takes too much time and it is faster too pay cash for your tickets.

Visited November 2013
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Delaware
Senior Contributor
36 reviews 36 reviews
20 attraction reviews
Reviews in 17 cities Reviews in 17 cities
27 helpful votes 27 helpful votes
“History in a jail”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed December 25, 2013

Viewing is by guided tour and the guide provided a history of both the jail and its use and of Ireland during the period of use. The layout shows the development of a theory of reform that failed. The abodes of famous protesters are labeled and some stayed multiple times.

Visited December 2013
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Cambridge, United Kingdom
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32 reviews 32 reviews
11 attraction reviews
Reviews in 20 cities Reviews in 20 cities
42 helpful votes 42 helpful votes
“Too large a group and too many groups”
4 of 5 stars Reviewed December 25, 2013

Guides are very knowledgeable and do their best to cram decades of Irish history into less than an hour's tour. Suggest you read up on Irish history before coming here or at the ticket counter ask to see the museum first before booking your tour time, otherwise the ticket seller will assume it's the next tour that you're on. Allow 1.5 hours for the museum - covers both the main function of the gaol and the independence fighters.

My only gripes were that our group numbered more than 12 and in long corridors, if you're not at the front with the guide you're straining to hear what's being said. Also, a family around me was getting a running commentary in their native language! So get ahead if you can.

And my second gripe is that the groups are spaced too close to each other. There should be a half hour or 20-minute gap in between so that we have time to absorb the information and have a sense of the place before moving to the next location. Right now it feels like cattle herding! My group had to leave a room as soon as the guide finished talking as another group waited to come in.

Visited July 2013
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Dunfermline, United Kingdom
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22 reviews 22 reviews
4 attraction reviews
Reviews in 11 cities Reviews in 11 cities
20 helpful votes 20 helpful votes
“Very informative”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed December 24, 2013

This was a fantastic place to visit most informative and was well presented. Brought back a lot about history of Ireland.

Visited December 2013
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