Things to see & do at Kirkstall Abbey

Explore the historic ruins of Kirkstall Abbey and learn all about its history in the Visitor Centre. Enjoy wandering through the park and woodlands, and take a leisurely stroll beside the River Aire.

We have a range of displays and events running throughout the year. Visit our What’s on page to find out more.

The Abbey & Visitor Centre

Kirkstall Abbey is a marvel to behold with its dramatic architecture and magnificent ruins. The abbey is one of the most complete Cistercian monasteries in Britain.

As a Grade I listed building and Scheduled Ancient Monument it is a haven for historians, artists and visitors to Leeds. Step back in time, learn about life as a monk and explore the history of the abbey at our interactive Visitor Centre.

Tile split in to four pieces on display
Arial view of Kirkstall Abbey

Tales of Kirkstall Abbey

Tales of Kirkstall Abbey is our informal audio guide, which takes visitors on a journey through some key areas of the abbey ruins.

Through short conversations with curators and members of the Kirkstall Abbey team visitors can discover the history of the abbey and the people who called it home.

Using your smartphone or tablet, you will find 10 points across the ruins to scan a QR code or follow a short link which will take you to our website and the audio trail.

The Abbey Park

The park at Kirkstall Abbey is a great space to play, enjoy a picnic and explore all year round.

Enjoy a leisurely stroll around the grounds or along the river and keep an eye out for a wide variety of events being held throughout the year. There is a large playground for children to let off steam.

Pink flower
Man in street food vendor truck next to a pile of giant Yorkshire puddings

Kirkstall Abbey Market

Join us at our fantastic outdoor market, set within the abbey grounds. It features unique makers and producers from Leeds and the surrounding areas.

Running on selected weekends, the market includes over 40 stalls with hand-made crafts and local produce from across Yorkshire. Enjoy browsing in a stunning setting, pick up a gift, sample something delicious and support local businesses.

1152 Club Talks

Our 1152 Club talks are perfect for adults who enjoy hearing about local history with like-minded people. See our what’s on page to find out when the next talk is taking place. Refreshments are included.