Melrose Abbey
Historic Sites • Ancient Ruins • Architectural Buildings
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10:00 AM - 4:00 PM
Monday
10:00 AM - 4:00 PM
Tuesday
10:00 AM - 4:00 PM
Wednesday
10:00 AM - 4:00 PM
Thursday
10:00 AM - 4:00 PM
Friday
10:00 AM - 4:00 PM
Saturday
10:00 AM - 4:00 PM
Sunday
10:00 AM - 4:00 PM
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About
The abbey grounds, cloister and museum are now open and we are delighted to welcome you back. Probably the most famous ruin in Scotland, the abbey was founded by David I in 1136 for the Cistercian Order, and it was largely destroyed by Richard II's English army in 1385. The surviving remains of the church are of the early 15th century, and are of an elegance unsurpassed in Scotland. Objects found during excavation are displayed in the Commendator's House. The exterior of this magnificent ruin is decorated by unusual sculptures, including hobgoblins, cooks with ladles and a bagpipe playing pig. The abbey is also thought to be the burial place of Robert the Bruce's heart, marked with a commemorative carved stone plaque within the grounds.
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Detailed Reviews: Reviews order informed by descriptiveness of user-identified themes such as cleanliness, atmosphere, general tips and location information.
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4.5
1,179 reviews
Excellent
724
Very good
360
Average
78
Poor
12
Terrible
5

Peter S
Stocksfield, UK54 contributions
Oct 2022
We were lucky and the weather was lovely but the visit might be less pleasant in poor weather, and it's not possible to go inside due to loose masonry.
Written 1 November 2022
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.

sammarshall24
73 contributions
Oct 2022
This is a bit like Jedburgh Abbey and closed to the public in some areas, even so it is well worth visiting, thought it was amazing walking through the grounds and feeling what history it had. There is a nice little museum in the grounds as well which has more information and has some structures of what once stood on the Abbey
Written 23 October 2022
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.

jaimeelsabio
Maryland4,149 contributions
Oct 2022 • Couples
We have the annual Historic Environment Scotland pass, so even though we knew the abbey was undergoing restoration we still stopped to visit it since our travel companions had never visited it. It was the last of the four borders abbeys we visited. When we arrived the ticket office was closed for lunch, but since we had the annual pass we went through a gate across from the museum to view the abbey. The entire interior is closed, but the abbey is still impressive. Upon leaving, we had our pass scanned at the ticket office.
Written 9 October 2022
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.

notacouchpotato
London, England481 contributions
Sep 2022
In common with the majority of abbeys in the Borders, Melrose Abbey church is out of bounds for safety reasons. So it was a bit of a tortuous path the view the cloisters and to find the (alleged) heart of Robert the Bruce. An interesting walk through history
Written 3 October 2022
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.
Thank you for taking the time to review the Abbey. The abbey grounds, cloister and museum are open. We are very sorry that due to access restrictions in place as a precautionary measure while we undertake high level masonry inspections, there is currently no visitor access to the abbey church. This is noted on our website and further information on our ongoing conversation works can be found here too. We are glad to hear you found the site interesting, and apologise for any impact the restrictions had on your experience. Thanks again for taking the time to leave a review.
Written 6 October 2022
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of Tripadvisor LLC.

Andrew N
21 contributions
Sep 2022
Worth noting that the Abbey is mostly fenced-off for safety reasons, but you can still walk in the grounds and get pretty close up. Also worth noting that because of this, tickets are half-price. Plenty of information boards and an audio tour if you want it. Also access to a small museum adjacent. You really get a sense of history here.
Written 10 September 2022
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.

Colin M
Glasgow, UK149 contributions
Sep 2022 • Solo
The abbey is closed to allow work on it so there is high fencing all the way round it. You still have to pay to get in although at half price. You can walk round the abbey and there is a small museum on site.
It's disappointing if you want to take photos.

Not really worth going to until the fencing is down.
Written 7 September 2022
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.
Thanks for your review, and apologies for any disappointment caused by current restrictions at the abbey. As you may know, the current restrictions were put in place following some sample surveys which we conducted last year. These surveys identified potentially concerning masonry at high level, and the access restrictions were put in place to ensure that visitors and staff were not exposed to any risks. Winter weather meant we had to pause this inspection work, but we used that time to plan and prioritise a programme of inspections, which began this May, as well as to develop and carry out specialist training for our staff who are performing the inspections. Sites where access restrictions are having a significant adverse community and economic impact are being prioritised this year. You can find more information on the prioritisation of our planned inspections here: https://www.historicenvironment.scot/about-us/news/inspection-programme-underway-to-assess-scotlands-national-heritage-assets/ Our aim is to provide as much public access as safely as possible to our sites. As the project progresses, we will look for ways to safely allow at least partial access to our sites. If it becomes possible to safely open the abbey, we will update this on our website. Full details of what parts of the abbey will remain closed, and what is open will be kept up to date on our website. We are sorry for any disappointment the restrictions on this site have caused, and are working hard to make sure that it is safe to re-open for the public and our staff. Thanks again for your feedback.
Written 5 October 2022
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of Tripadvisor LLC.

richard r
Borgue, UK127 contributions
Aug 2022 • Couples
Right in the centre of town, this ruined abbey allows dogs in the ground. Once a rich Cistertian abbey that was sacked numerous times in the ongoing England vs Scotland conflicts.
It has interesting elements of the earliest simple structure as well as the fancier later additions. Fascinating stonework details such as the pig playing the bagpipes are still visible.
The onsite museum is the only.bit that you cant take the dog in but has fascinating bits and pieces from the archeology.
I would.have scored the site higher but for HES's policy of fencing off all the buildings for Health & Safety!
Written 28 August 2022
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.
Thanks for your review. We are glad to hear you enjoyed your visit to the abbey, and we are sorry for any disappointment caused by the current restrictions. As you may know, the current restrictions were put in place following some sample surveys which we conducted last year. These surveys identified potentially concerning masonry at high level, and the access restrictions were put in place to ensure that visitors and staff were not exposed to any risks. Winter weather meant we had to pause this inspection work, but we used that time to plan and prioritise a programme of inspections, which began this May, as well as to develop and carry out specialist training for our staff who are performing the inspections. Our aim is to provide as much public access as safely as possible to our sites. As the project progresses, we will look for ways to safely allow at least partial access to our sites. While there is there is currently no visitor access to the abbey church, we have already been able to open the abbey grounds, cloister and museum. Full details of what parts of the abbey will remain closed, and what will be open will be kept up to date on our website. We are sorry for the impact on your visit caused by these precautions. Please be assured that we are working hard to make sure that the abbey buildings that remain closed are safe to re-open for the public and our staff. Thanks again for your feedback.
Written 30 August 2022
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of Tripadvisor LLC.

JaneWilsonHowarth
Cambridge, UK109 contributions
Aug 2022
Only partial access because the central building is in need to support and reparations. Nice site with plenty of good info
Written 16 August 2022
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.

Little Jenny
London, UK502 contributions
Jul 2022
We stopped here after a visit to Jedburgh Abbey and we were glad to see that this Abbey has more open areas and there was more to see. The Abbey is picturesque and is a good way to spend a few hours. it has an interesting museum too.
Written 4 August 2022
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.

Heather A
Dollar, Scotland, United Kingdom20 contributions
Jul 2022
The abby is very well laid out and the museum is informative. The museum was very cool which was great as visited on a hot day,
Written 23 July 2022
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.

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Melrose Abbey

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