An outstanding landmark in England's history, St Augustine's Abbey was founded in AD 598 by St Augustine himself. It marked the start of the rebirth of Christianity in southern England and is part of the Canterbury World Heritage Site along with the cathedral and St Martin's Church. The site functioned as a monastery until it was suppressed in 1538, becoming a royal palace and then a Stuart garden. Today, the ruins are an atmospheric testament to the unique history of the site.
Information about your visit
Our number one priority remains the health, safety and security of all of our visitors, staff and volunteers. Our staff are still working hard to keep everyone safe and make sure you and your group have an enjoyable visit.
You and your group don’t need to have a COVID Pass to visit, but please don’t visit if you or any of your group have symptoms of Covid-19, have tested positive or if you’ve been asked to self-isolate. We’ll always follow the latest government guidance, and if anything changes we’ll update this page to let you know our plans.
Important information to consider before you book:
- Face coverings are now legally required in all our indoor public places, including our visitor centres, shops, on all on-site transport, and in our cafes except when you are eating or drinking (unless exempt)
- To keep everyone safe we’re continuing to limit visitor numbers at some sites and in some indoor spaces. Please book as soon as possible to secure your preferred trip date and times.
- In order to process your enquiry as quickly as possible, please ensure you have provided the following information, or have this information ready when you speak to one of our advisers: visit arrival and departure time; age range of the group; subject(s) to be studied; learning objective; number of learners and leaders; name of trip organiser; name of trip leader; SEND requirements. Go to our bookings page to make an enquiry or update an existing booking.
- Find out more about what to expect on your school visit and make sure you download our COVID risk assessments; download a free copy of managing education visits during the pandemic and if you're participating in a Discovery Visit download our managing Discovery Visits during the pandemic 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.
- You’ll need to book your visit at least 14 days in advance. Please check our terms and conditions for full details.
- Although is it not a requirement, any teachers, parents, or students aged 16 years can check in via the NHS Test and Trace app, using the NHS QR code posters displayed at the site entrance. Please factor this into your travel/arrival time. For more information about how we are handling your personal data for NHS Test and Trace please visit this page.
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 keep you and your group safe at all times, but for certain sessions we’re still working on this – please check the Discovery Visit section and Facilities section on this page below for further information.Enquire Now
Support your teaching in the classroom by stepping out of it. A visit to St Augustine's Abbey will help you bring learning to life, covering multiple topics across the curriculum and key stages.
- KS1 History: Significant historical events, people and places in the locality
- KS2 History: A local history study. Britain's Settlement by Anglo-Saxons and Scots, Christian conversion. Viking and Anglo-Saxon struggle for the Kingdom of England to the time of Edward the Confessor. A study of an aspect or theme in British history that extends pupils’ chronological knowledge beyond 1066
- KS2 Religious Studies: Religion in daily life. Why an abbey was built on the site and who lived there
- KS3 History: A local history study. The development of church, state and society in Medieval Britain 1066-1509 and in Britain 1509-1745. A study of an aspect or theme in British history that consolidates and extends pupils’ chronological knowledge from before 1066
Free Self-led Visits
Book a free self-led visit to St Augustine's Abbey and organise your day to suit your curriculum objectives. Explore the extensive abbey ruins, including the excavated remains of England’s oldest churches, and spot the features of the Norman cathedral-sized church. Visit the museum to discover the story of the site, from the first Christian Anglo-Saxon king and first Anglo-Saxon monastery in England, to Norman updates, the suppression of the monasteries and a Stuart garden.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.
0370 333 0606
If you’d like more information about a site or one of our workshops, get in touch using the online form on our bookings page to speak to your local Education Visits Officer. We look forward to seeing you soon.