Walking Guide: Helmsley Castle to Rievaulx Abbey
Follow in the footsteps of medieval monks on this picturesque rural walk between two historic sites in the North Yorks Moors National Park.
The short peaceful hike takes you through fields, woodlands and country tracks before arriving at the ruin of one of England's most powerful Cistercian monasteries.
|DISTANCE||3 miles (5km), about an hour plus time for visiting the castle and abbey.|
|TERRAIN||Level ground on established roads and lanes, though not suitable for wheelchairs or pushchairs|
|TRANSPORT||Large pay and display car park close to Helmsley Castle. Postcode for Helmsley YO62 5AB.|
|FOOD & DRINK||New tearoom at Rievaulx Abbey serving hot and cold drinks plus locally-sourced food including sandwiches, soups and cakes. Enjoy views of the abbey from the outdoor terrace.|
|ACCESS & DOGS||Wheelchair access to the site is limited due to the geography. Dogs welcome if kept on a lead.|
|MAP REFERENCE||OS Explorer OL26 (North York Moors - Western Area)|
Before you set off...Visit Helmsley Castle
Visit Helmsley Castle before you set off.
Explore 900 years of the castle's evolution from a mighty medieval fortress to luxurious Tudor mansion and romantic Victorian ruin.
Free guided tours of the Helmsley Archaeology Store are also available.
Leaving the castle, turn left out of the car park and follow the track signposted 'Cleveland Way'.
At the top of the track, go through the kissing gate and turn left down the side of the field. Then turn right, keeping the woodland on your left.
1.75kmThrough the woodland
Go through the gateway and continue down the stone steps into the wood, then up the steps the other side to reach the wood's edge.
At the edge of the wood, continue straight ahead up the slope as the path opens out.
Cross the track, pass to the left of Griff Lodge and continue ahead.
Turn left at the main road (Ingdale Howl), curving to the right with woodland on the right.
4.3kmFollow the Rye
Turn right immediately before the bridge, following the road parallel with the River Rye on your left.
5kmArrive at Rievaulx
Arrive in Rievaulx village, finding the abbey on your right.
Enjoy a visit to the impressive ruins of one of England's most powerful Cistercian monasteries. Secluded and surrounded by woodland, take the time to enjoy Rievaulx's tranquil setting, and some refreshments from the new tearoom.
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