Historic Scotland

Opening times

1 April to 30 September: 9.30pm to 5.30pm

1 October to 31 March: Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, Saturday and Sunday, 9.30am to 4pm. Closed Thursday and Friday.




Wander among the remains of a spectacular example of Scottish monastic architecture. Kelso Abbey was founded in the 1100s and was one of Scotland’s largest and wealthiest religious houses.

The abbey was founded by monks invited by King David I. Originally settling at Selkirk, the monks relocated to Kelso in 1128, moving close to David’s new castle at Roxburgh.

Next to nothing remains of the once-sprawling monastery precinct. But what survives of the church is one of the most spectacular architectural achievements in medieval Scotland. It is situated on the edge of the historic burgh of Kelso, itself one of Scotland’s prettiest towns, and has been a favourite subject for artists since the late 1600s.