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Rievaulx Abbey

Rievaulx Bank, Helmsley YO62 5LB, England
+44 1439 798228
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Castle Howard, Rievaulx Abbey, and North York Moors Day Trip from York
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Hidden in the deep River Rye valley, the beautiful and tranquil abbey ruins reflect nearly one thousand years of spiritual, commercial and Romantic history. Rievaulx was one of the first Cistercian abbeys to be founded in England in around 1130, and after the dissolution, became the centre of commercial activity for many years. The abbey forge was used to set up an ironworks on the site. The abbey then entered its Romantic period when its picturesque ruins became a beacon for poets, painters, and scholars. It was one of the first major ruins to be conserved by the Office of Works (ancestor of English Heritage) in 1917.
  • Excellent74%
  • Very good22%
  • Average2%
  • Poor1%
  • Terrible1%
Travellers talk about
“audio guide” (88 reviews)
“monastic life” (14 reviews)
Suggested Duration: 1-2 hours
Rievaulx Bank, Helmsley YO62 5LB, England
+44 1439 798228
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Reviews (1,013)
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1 - 10 of 995 reviews

Reviewed yesterday via mobile

Very nice ruins. Stunning setting. Good free audio guide. Informative museum. Not too expensive by English Heritage standards!

Thank Gareth W
Reviewed yesterday via mobile

We arrived late and only had a couple of hours so the cost seemed high but actually it was very good value for such an interesting historic site. You could easily spend half a day or a whole day as a family with picnic. There...More

Thank sue w
Reviewed 2 days ago via mobile

We visited the Abbey as a couple, and was very impressed. It is now run by English Heritage and has been restored beautifully. It costs £8.50 per adult entry and it is well worth getting the Audio to take around with you as this gives...More

Thank Posidonion
Reviewed 2 days ago via mobile

Second visit to this stunning Abbey. I am sure it's the most impressive in the U.K. So much to take in and Huge. A must see

Thank Cookster_11
Reviewed 3 days ago

This is one of my favourite English Heritage properties. We first visited many years ago when we had it all to our selves. It was so quiet, so peaceful. Now things are different. There is a car park, a shop, a cafe , historical enactments...More

Thank Pengor
Reviewed 4 days ago via mobile

An absolute must see - just take a look at the photos, great historical site and really recommend staying in nearby Helmsley - we did a lovely walk from the village square to Riveaulx Abbey. Highlight of our trip.

Thank sarahfong86
Reviewed 4 days ago

Thought the whole experience was excellent. There was a good amount of history and the ruins were well maintained. There was a new restaurant which was good but why were dogs allowed in. Don't people know the law

Thank Martin D
Reviewed 4 days ago via mobile

My wife and I love coming here, even though it is quite a trick for us. Beautiful, atmospheric and evocative of a long gone era. This time we arrived in near rainstorm conditions with hardly anyone about. The moody clouds made for exquisite shots as...More

Thank Edwardo C
Reviewed 5 days ago via mobile

We visited this during a dull day but had a lovely time. We found it an extremely interesting site especially with the free head sets we were given. It is an impressive ruin and we took plenty of photos. There were picnic tables when we...More

Thank Andrew T
Reviewed 5 days ago via mobile

We toured Rievalux Abbey in a light rain - it was so beautiful and we enjoyed it with almost no people, so great for photography! The weather almost added to the mystique as we wandered throughout the ruins! Beautiful setting with sheep grazing in adjacent...More

Thank nowpacking
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Questions & Answers
Nicholas B
Hello gelvisblue I'm very surprised by your review, how can you not just be in wonder and intrigue as you walked around the site? The history seeping from the magnificent ruins from nearly 900 years ago! The presbytery of the church, one of the finest examples of early English architecture. The magnificent refectory and the remains of the undercroft below. The monks choir and crossing in the south transept, with the doorway still in tact leading to the dormitory. The remarkable, unusual chapter house with its shrine to Abott William dating from 1250. The beautiful cloister with details like the piscine(holy water basin) Do I need to go on? Rievaulx Abbey was a major architectural influence on the medieval monastic church from the 12th to the 16th centuries and, from the mid 18th century. Rievaulx includes some of the earliest surviving buildings of any Cistercian monastery in Europe. Abott William's stone monastery was the first great Cistercian church to be built in England on the model of the church and claustral layout that was being developed at Clairvaux from about 1135. That makes Rievaulx one of the earliest surviving examples in Europe of what subsequently became the standard plan for all Cistercian abbey's, and for those of the other major monastic orders. Maybe you should visit other places other than ones like Rievaulx Abbey, as you clearly have no interest, understanding, or appreciation, of fine pieces of vastly important places of history in England. Go back, get the audio guide, and try to appreciate how lucky you are to be able to visit and learn about this remarkable place.
12 September 2017|
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Response from ApriliaApex | Reviewed this property |
You foolish man, i do appreciate Rievaulx Abbey, i just didn't care for the cafe or the shop. I will look forward to going back there and to finding that you have sent your reply to "gelvisblue" and deleted any link to me.
Lisa W
28 April 2017|
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Response from Holibobsis | Reviewed this property |
Took our two dogs inside and they were made most welcome :-)
4 March 2017|
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Response from Ivan D | Reviewed this property |
Hi, You can find all relevant data on the website of English Heritage. I think that all English Heritage properties have opening hours in period April to September from 10:00 to 18:00. Regards ID