Insider's Guide to Lake District

Major attractions, tips and our top things to see and do.

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  • Address: Abbey Approach
  • Hours: Open every day except Tuesday and Wednesday from April to September, otherwise open weekends only.

Construction on Furness Abbey began in 1123, with numerous alterations and additions following in the ensuing three centuries. Throughout the Middle Ages it was a stronghold of the wealthy, influential Cistercian order, a big wheel in local politics.

But if you wanted to worship here you’re almost 500 years too late; the abbey was one of the victims of Henry VIII’s “Dissolution of the Monasteries”. Nonetheless, the abbey’s ruins, with most exterior walls and much of the impressive stone decorations still intact, are an impressive and evocative sight in themselves.

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