Rievaulx Abbey

Rievaulx Abbey

Location: Rievaulx, North Yorkshire  Map

Tel. 01439 798228

Active: 1132- 1538 (closed by Henry VIII)


Apr-Sep: daily 10am-6pm
Oct: Thu-Mon 10am-5pm
Nov-Mar: Thu-Mon 10am-4pm

Closed: 24- 26 Dec, 1 Jan

Cost: £5.30 adults, £2.70 children


Description of Rievaulx Abbey

Rievaulx Abbey Map

Rievaulx Abbey is a medieval Roman Catholic monastery of the Cistercian order situated in Rievaulx, North Yorkshire in United Kingdom.  Rievaulx Abbey was found in 1132 by 12  monks who were blessed by Saint Bernard of Clairvaux to leave their home in Clairvaux in France to move to the island. New abbey of the White Monks served as their base for missionary work in the North England as well as Scotland regions. Help from benefactors such as Henry II (1135-1154) and King David of Scotland (1124-1153) further increased wealth and influence of the Rievaulx Abbey. At some point it numbered over 150 monks and over 500 lay brethren. A big influence on the prestige and fame of the monastery came when its third abbot Aelred took charge of the community. Famous author and an inspiration preached he attracted many people to the abbey and after his death was canonized by the church.


By the thirteenth century disciples of the monastery found another 19 abbeys across the country. Unfortunately the same century brought famine, wars and plague that destroyed much of the influence and riches of this religious complex. The things deteriorate even further when the Black Death hit England and the abbey in 1348- 49. Only survivors were an abbot, fourteen monks and three lay brothers who lived and worked on the monastery grounds.

Rievaulx Abbey

Rievaulx Abbey