St. Mary's Abbey
St. Mary's Abbey
4.5
10:00 AM - 5:00 PM
Monday
10:00 AM - 5:00 PM
Tuesday
10:00 AM - 5:00 PM
Wednesday
10:00 AM - 5:00 PM
Thursday
10:00 AM - 5:00 PM
Friday
10:00 AM - 5:00 PM
Saturday
10:00 AM - 5:00 PM
Sunday
10:00 AM - 5:00 PM
About
William II laid the foundation to this abbey during the 11th century, it became known as the most powerful and wealthiest monastery in the North of England at that time.
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  • roy v
    Traralgon, Australia5,811 contributions
    5.0 of 5 bubbles
    This place must have been very grand
    We were on a walking tour when we visited these old ruins. You can see by what is left that this Abbey must have been a huge grand place. Set in a nice lawn area there were quite a lot of people about enjoying the beauty of the area. The stone work that is left shows a lot of work and skill went into building the Abbey . One wonders what happened to the people who lived here centuries ago and why was it allowed to decay to this state, a shame. Well worth going to see
    Hi there, Thank you for your review. King Henry VIII banned all monasteries in England in 1530s. The monks at St Mary’s were pensioned off in 1540 and the abbey buildings were converted into a palace for the King when he visited York. Gradually they fell into ruins and were used as agricultural buildings before being excavated by the Yorkshire Philosophical Society in the 1820s. We are glad you enjoyed your visit and hope you will return again another time!
    Written 7 September 2023
    This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of Tripadvisor LLC.
    Visited September 2023
    Travelled as a couple
    Written 5 September 2023
  • Kittington
    Rochdale, United Kingdom70 contributions
    4.0 of 5 bubbles
    Nice little walk around St Marys Abbey
    If you are into your history and like visiting Abbeys and Castles, then this is for you. Nice, well maintained gardens set in the Abbey Grounds. Full of wildlife. St Marys Abbey is steeped in history. Its free to walk through, and a great spot if you like taking photos. Well worth a visit.
    Thank you for this review. We are pleased to hear you enjoyed the fabulous work that our gardens team do to keep the gardens looking lovely. We hope you will return again another time soon.
    Written 13 October 2023
    This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of Tripadvisor LLC.
    Visited September 2023
    Travelled as a couple
    Written 24 September 2023
  • amanda5805
    Duncan, Canada7,057 contributions
    5.0 of 5 bubbles
    Abbey Ruins form 1088
    St. Mary's Abbey offers a glimpse into England's history, nestled within the York's ancient walls. Built in 1088 as a Benedictine monastery, this Abbey has evolved from its humble beginnings to become one of Northern England's most powerful religious institutions. One of the highlights of our visit was walking through the abbey ruins and garden, a tranquil oasis amidst the bustling city. Even in the winter months, we could appreciate the beauty of the surroundings, and we could only imagine how stunning it must be in full bloom during the summer. The best part It's entirely free.
    Hi Amanda! Thanks so much for taking the time to leave us this lovely review. We are so pleased to hear that you enjoyed your visit to the gardens and found it a beautiful and relaxing space. Do come back and visit us again throughout the year to see the different seasons!
    Written 7 April 2024
    This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of Tripadvisor LLC.
    Visited October 2023
    Travelled as a couple
    Written 29 February 2024
  • Joshane615
    Australia616 contributions
    5.0 of 5 bubbles
    Breathtaking
    The Abbey is breathtaking. The history in York is absolutely fascinating to me. I enjoyed wandering around the area. The gardens surrounding the Abbey are gorgeous also. A really beautiful place to relax.
    Thank you for your lovely review. We are pleased you found our spaces beautiful, we hope you will come back to enjoy the gardens again in the future
    Written 22 June 2024
    This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of Tripadvisor LLC.
    Visited May 2024
    Travelled as a couple
    Written 7 June 2024
These reviews are the subjective opinion of Tripadvisor members and not of TripAdvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.

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alisdair t
Workington, UK6,341 contributions
4.0 of 5 bubbles
Mar 2022
I had a wander around, when exploring the gardens. The abbey was one of the richest in the land, when it was destroyed in the Dissolution, in 1539. The abbey dates from 1271, after an earlier on was destroyed by a fire. The ruins are splendid, not on a scale as others, such as Whitby, or Fountains abbeys.
Written 19 March 2022
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.
Thankyou for your review of St Mary's Abbey ruins. We are glad you found it interesting to see. We look forward to welcoming you back!
Written 31 March 2022
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of Tripadvisor LLC.

Neil K
Liverpool, UK830,368 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Mar 2022 • Friends
I love nothing better than walking around the wonderful Museum Gardens and tucked away looking very evocative is St Mary's Abbey.
This is a beautiful set of ruins ,the original church was founded in 1089 by King William Rufus and dedicated to St Olaf which in turn was rue dedicated to the Virgin Mary.
Badly damaged in a fire in 1137 ,the ruins we see today date from between 1271-1292.
Looking at the abbey now you can see it's beautiful Gothic arches ,it doesn't take a great deal of imagination to think how magnificent a structure this once was ,it's still beautiful ,an evocative piece of architecture that most definitely well worth checking out if your planning on visiting Museum Gardens .
Written 25 March 2022
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.
Thankyou so much for reviewing St Mary's Abbey ruins. We are glad you found this historical and free site so interesting to visit! We hope to welcome you back.
Written 31 March 2022
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of Tripadvisor LLC.

Val W
Merthyr Tydfil, UK1,223 contributions
4.0 of 5 bubbles
Apr 2022
Considering the fact that this was one of the richest and most important abbeys in Yorkshire, the remains are not extensive. Despite this, they are beautiful and the gardens that have developed around them are lovely. It is a lovely place to pause for a while and simply drink in the ambience. Even if your priority is the gardens or the museum, take the time to enjoy the ruins as well. There is no cost involved in a visit.
Written 24 June 2022
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.
Good morning! Thank you for your review! The abbey really is a beautiful and relaxing place and we are glad you enjoyed your visit. We hope you will be back to enjoy the scenery again soon!
Written 30 June 2022
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of Tripadvisor LLC.

Clickster
Derbyshire116 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Oct 2020
A sunny but cool Sunday morning saw us walking around the ruins of St Marys Abbey and the gardens. Its quite an atmospheric place, and seems to have a calmness within its walls. There were quite a few people around but this didn't detract. A nice place to visit when in York
Written 5 November 2020
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Kittington
Rochdale, UK70 contributions
4.0 of 5 bubbles
Sept 2023 • Couples
If you are into your history and like visiting Abbeys and Castles, then this is for you. Nice, well maintained gardens set in the Abbey Grounds. Full of wildlife. St Marys Abbey is steeped in history. Its free to walk through, and a great spot if you like taking photos. Well worth a visit.
Written 24 September 2023
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.
Thank you for this review. We are pleased to hear you enjoyed the fabulous work that our gardens team do to keep the gardens looking lovely. We hope you will return again another time soon.
Written 13 October 2023
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of Tripadvisor LLC.

Joshane615
Australia616 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
May 2024 • Couples
The Abbey is breathtaking. The history in York is absolutely fascinating to me. I enjoyed wandering around the area. The gardens surrounding the Abbey are gorgeous also. A really beautiful place to relax.
Written 8 June 2024
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.
Thank you for your lovely review. We are pleased you found our spaces beautiful, we hope you will come back to enjoy the gardens again in the future
Written 22 June 2024
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of Tripadvisor LLC.

Greg
Ajax, Canada3 contributions
4.0 of 5 bubbles
May 2023
York is a gem. York is a time capsule with something for everyone. Walk the wall. Watch a Roman dig. Stand on a Viking settlement. Wander around an 11th century castle.
Written 21 May 2023
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.
Thank you for your review! We hope you will be back in York again soon!
Written 15 June 2023
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of Tripadvisor LLC.

Sandygranny
Sandy, UK936 contributions
4.0 of 5 bubbles
May 2016 • Couples
We came across the ruins of St Mary’s Abbey in York while walking through a public park. The abbey was Benedictine, which means that it was run according to the rules laid down by St Benedict. It was the wealthiest abbey in the north until Henry VIII took their funding. This made it very hard to maintain the abbey and it had to close. The villagers pillaged it and it was left to crumble.

We were able to walk all around these ruins and it must have been an impressive structure in its day, although there is not much left of it now except for part of the nave and an arch from the central tower. We tried to imagine how it would have looked all those years ago.
Written 16 May 2016
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Sandygranny
Sandy, UK936 contributions
4.0 of 5 bubbles
Feb 2017 • Couples
This was our second visit to the ruins of St Mary’s Abbey in York. The ruins were well worth another visit.

We had a relaxing walk around and couldn’t help thinking how beautiful it must have been before Henry VIII ordered all the abbeys to be destroyed. Henry was furious because the Pope refused to let him marry Anne Boleyn.

St Mary’s Abbey is definitely worth a visit.
Written 9 March 2017
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Carol Kincaid
Clacton-on-Sea, UK194 contributions
3.0 of 5 bubbles
Apr 2019 • Friends
Perhaps not worth a specific visit unless you really are interested in old ruins but it is a focal point in the gardens and make a great photo.
Written 9 April 2019
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

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ST. MARY'S ABBEY (2024) All You Need to Know BEFORE You Go (with Photos)

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