Rievaulx Terrace and Temples
Rievaulx Terrace and Temples
A small Georgian landscape garden in lovely Ryedale, featuring a long, grassy terrace with a classical Ionic temple facing a Tuscan temple at the other end. The Ionic Temple has a superb painted ceiling depicting scenes from Greek myths. Rievaulx Terrace overlooks the remains of medieval Rievaulx Abbey on the floor of the valley below.

Rievaulx Terrace and Temples was built in 1758 by Thomas Duncombe III, owner of Helmsley estate. Duncombe, a member of the family who built nearby Duncombe Park, modelled his Tuscan temple on the dome of Castle Howard, near York. The paved floor of the temple was scavenged from the ruins of Rievaulx Abbey.

The Ionic Temple was modelled after the Temple of Fortuna Virilis in Rome. Duncombe intended to use it as a banqueting house. The kitchens were located in the small basement below the banqueting room. Today, the kitchens house an exhibition on the landscape gardening movement in England.

The garden has a lovely display of flowers in the Spring, and enjoyable walks through the beech woodlands.

It is worth noting that there is no direct access from Rievaulx Terrace to Rievaulx Abbey, due to the steep nature of the terrain. To access the abbey you have to drive out of the Rievaulx Terrace parking lot and turn left on the road down to the abbey.