Rievaulx Abbey

Schools

Escape to this tranquil valley of the North York Moors and explore the impressive ruins of one of England's most powerful Cistercian monasteries.

Discover Rievaulx Abbey's fascinating past and the lives of the monks who called Rievaulx Abbey their home in our museum, displaying previously unseen artefacts which tell the story of the rise and dramatic fall of the first Cistercian abbey in the North of England.

Many schools combine their visit with a trip to nearby Helmsley Castle - find out more here.

Information about your visit

A visit to one of our sites will inspire your students and bring your teaching to life. We'd like to reassure you that we're following Government guidance to make your trip as safe and enjoyable as possible. 

Important information to consider before you book:

  • To keep everyone safe we’ve introduced limits on visitor numbers and school groups, so please bear this in mind when booking your trip.
  • Find out more about what to expect on your school visit, which also includes our Covid 19 Risk Assessment.
  • To make the planning process as easy as possible, make sure you check our Plan Your School Trip section at the bottom of this page, for updated information on the facilities at the site as well as our free resources.
  • As usual, you’ll need to book your visit at least 14 days in advance. Please check our Terms and Conditions for full details.

We’re continually updating our education offer in line with government guidance.  At some sites you might not be able to use our handling collections or costumes as part of a free self-led visit, but where we can provide hands-on items in a safe way we will. We’ve adapted our Discovery Visit workshops to follow government guidelines, but for certain sessions this hasn’t been possible – please check our schools webpages for further information.

There may be areas of our sites which are closed, so please check what’s available for your school group on our property webpages and with our booking team.  They can put you in touch with our Education Visits Officers who can offer help and guidance, so you can make the most of your school trip.

Curriculum links

  • KS1-3 History: A local history study
  • KS1 History: Significant historical events, people and places in their own locality
  • KS2 History: Study of an aspect or theme in British history that extends pupils’ chronological knowledge beyond 1066
  • KS3 History: The development of Church, state and society in Britain 1066-1509 and 1509-1745

Free self-led visits

We offer free entry to Rievaulx Abbey to qualifying learning groups. By booking a free education visit you can lead your visit in your own way. Explore the beautiful abbey ruins and learn more about the Cistercian monks who lived there, in the museum.

Download our free Teachers' Kit to help you plan your lessons and visit to Rievaulx Abbey. 

Enquire now

Plan Your Trip

We have a wide range of materials to support your visit and make school trip planning easy. Download our free resources to help you make the most out of your visit and create unique learning experiences before, during and after your trip.

We also offer free planning visits for group leaders once you have made a booking. Our Education Booking Team is on hand to advise and help you create the best possible school trip to suit your needs and area of study.

  • Facilities
    • LUNCH: You are welcome to bring a picnic to eat in the grounds. There is a small patio area looking onto the site with a number of picnic tables, and a grass area
    • SHOP: There is a shop, selling a range of English Heritage souvenirs and gifts inspired by the abbey
    • TOILETS: Toilets, including accessible toilets are available 
    • MUSEUM: The museum features artefacts from the abbey including elaborate medieval stone carvings, chess pieces and gold coins which tell the story of the rise and dramatic fall of the first Cistercian abbey in the North of England
  • Learning Resources

    A Teachers' Kit is a free educational tool packed with everything you need to give your group a deep insight into the place you are visiting. Featuring historical information, suggestions for activities, and high-quality images, this resource is a comprehensive toolkit for group leaders of various subjects and key stages. Kits also include key site information, facilities, plans and hazard information.

  • Enquire now

  • School visits from September 2020

    Education bookings are now open and can make provisional bookings for visits from September 2020 to March 2021. Due to the current situation we can’t answer calls as quickly as we’d like to. If you’d like more information about a site, email us and we’ll put you in touch with an Education Visits Officer, or if you’d like to book a visit you can use our online booking form. 

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