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Ephrata Cloister

632 W Main St, Ephrata, PA 17522-1717
+1 717-733-6600
Review Highlights
Excellent tour and preserved community

This is a very unusual place where the religion/way of life was quite strict and difficult. There... read more

Reviewed 5 November 2017
Watkinsville, Georgia
Excellent Part of PA History

The Cloisters are an excellent example of the lives of 1732 German settlers, a community consisted... read more

Reviewed 30 October 2017
Milford, Delaware
Read all 303 reviews
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One of America's earliest religious communities, the Historic Ephrata Cloister was founded in 1732 by German settlers seeking spiritual goals rather than earthly rewards. Gathered in unique European style buildings, the community consisted of celibate Brothers and Sisters, and a married congregation of families.At the zenith of the community in the 1740s and 1750s, about 300 members worked and worshiped at the Cloister. Today, the National Historic Landmark is open for tours, special programs, and on-going research opportunities.
  • Excellent67%
  • Very good28%
  • Average3%
  • Poor1%
  • Terrible1%
Travellers talk about
“guided tour” (53 reviews)
“historic site” (14 reviews)
Closed Now
All hours
Hours Today: 09:00 - 17:00
632 W Main St, Ephrata, PA 17522-1717
+1 717-733-6600
Write a ReviewReviews (303)
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1 - 10 of 298 reviews

Reviewed 5 November 2017

This is a very unusual place where the religion/way of life was quite strict and difficult. There were only three of us on tour, which made it easy to ask questions and to explore all the places. Our guide was very knowledgeable, and all the...More

Thank connieherringdine
Reviewed 30 October 2017

The Cloisters are an excellent example of the lives of 1732 German settlers, a community consisted of celibate Brothers and Sisters, and a married congregation of families. You need to be there to hear the choir.... Beautiful

Thank Sakimas
Reviewed 11 October 2017

This place is so interesting. We visited on a warm September afternoon. Easy to find and park. We joined the 2pm tour. Just 4 of us. The guide was very knowledgeable and as it was a small group he could answer all our questions and...More

Thank Leven65
Reviewed 10 October 2017 via mobile

I can't say enough about how great this place is. We went on Sunday and there were free choral concerts that featured original music from the cloister. The music was beautiful. The choir director gave information regarding the music. There is someone who is just...More

Thank Cindy L
Reviewed 7 October 2017

My experience there took me back to a time of religious persecution where one person began a following of faithful believers that began a century old religion. The tour guide was knowledgeable and gave us insight into daily life, the beginnings of their religion, and...More

Thank munequa718
Reviewed 6 September 2017

Although I went there a few years ago, it was a very well preserved/renovated facility. Interesting, self paced, and well maintained. I would recommend it to history buffs.

Thank kpb119
Reviewed 4 September 2017

Do any of you want to visit the temple in San Francisco where James Jones carried out his indoctrination of people. This attraction (?) hides the truth of what was going on, or at least for the most part does. A crazed Christian found a...More

Thank JAHSanAnselmo
ConradBeissel, General Manager at Ephrata Cloister, responded to this reviewResponded 5 September 2017

Thank you for your comment. Ephrata Cloister stands as an example of William Penn's Holy Experiment - the first of the colonies where 17th and 18th century immigrants could worship as they pleased - or not. Their lives of religious devotion are best looked at...More

Reviewed 27 August 2017

a MUST DO! visit the Ephrata cloister to see & learn what life was like for this colony. the self guided audio tour allows you to go at your own pace into the buildings & hear how life was back then. very interesting place!!

Thank sherry30286
Reviewed 17 August 2017 via mobile

I am a local & our family loves the Ephrata Cloister (kids ages 2-12). The local history is so cool & the property is very beautiful & well kept. We've gotten some amazing photos here & look forward to our next visit. We pick up...More

Thank Hrutt
Reviewed 15 August 2017

Enjoyed our tour of the cloister very much. Learned a great deal about the history of the sect and the buildings. Great guide who was willing to answer any and all of our questions.

Thank Lynn G
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Nearby Attractions
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Questions & Answers
17 September 2016|
AnswerShow all 9 answers
Response from ConradBeissel | Property representative |
Tours begin with the 15 minute video and then you proceed with a guide to the two main buildings the Sisters' House and their Meetinghouse. The guided portion is about 45 - 50 minutes in length. if you add in the video... More
25 February 2015|
AnswerShow all 2 answers
Response from ConradBeissel | Property representative |
Ephrata Cloister will be closed on Easter Sunday. We will be open from 9 - 5 on Monday April 6th (Easter Monday).
25 February 2015|
Response from blaenboy1 | Reviewed this property |
Sorry, I don't know the answer to that!