Travel Guides

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) 


 The Route

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.

Plan your visit

StartLeaving Helmsley

Leaving the castle, turn left out of the car park and follow the track signposted 'Cleveland Way'. 

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