A journey through time
As you wander through Buckland Abbey, you will discover a wealth of fascinating tales, amazing architecture and over eight centuries of history.
More about Buckland
Beginning life as a tranquil monastery with a productive estate, Buckland has been redeveloped, restored and adapted, passing through the hands of famous seafarers and facing a devastating fire. There's no better place to venture on a voyage of discovery.
Buckland's Monastic history
Founded in 1278, Buckland Abbey was the last of the Cistercian monasteries to be built in medieval England and Wales. For over 250 years, the monks who farmed the vast estate lived in the peaceful solitude of the Tavy valley. The Dissolution of the Monasteries saw Buckland sold to Sir Roger Grenville, who began to modify the abbey into a house and home, and later it was sold again to privateer Sir Francis Drake, the first Englishman to circumnavigate the globe.
Want to discover more? Guide books are available in the shop and at the entrance door.
A visit to the house
You'll walk in the footsteps of monks, sailors and servants as you journey through rooms from a panelled Tudor chamber to a cosy Georgian dining room. Imagine yourself cooking in the kitchen? Or marvel at the original tiled floor in the great hall.
Don't miss the Rembrandt self portrait which is in the Georgian Dining Room.
The great barn
The impressive great barn, a mark of the monks' wealth and influence, was used for the storage and winnowing of corn.
Today it is home to a cider press, a reminder of the 27 acres of orchards that once stretched down to the river.