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Historic Scotland
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Opening times

1 April to 30 September:
Monday to Sunday, 9.30am to 5.30pm

1 October to 31 March:
Monday to Sunday, 10am to 4pm

Check here for unexpected closures

Facilities

 

Overview

Discover a place so beloved by Robert the Bruce, he chose it as the final resting place for his heart. Melrose Abbey is a magnificent ruin on a grand scale, and it was a highly desirable place to be buried.

David I founded Scotland’s first Cistercian monastery in 1136. Being so close to the border, Melrose Abbey suffered at English hands during the Middle Ages. Rebuilt in the 1380s, it was used as an abbey until the Protestant Reformation of 1560. Afterwards, the existing monks were allowed to stay on: the last died in 1590.

What to see and do

  • Admire the graceful architecture of the abbey church, among Britain’s finest church architecture of the late 1300s
  • Take in the charming sculpture – look out for the famous bagpipe-playing Melrose pig
  • Step inside the chapter house, where a heart believed to be that of Robert the Bruce is buried
  • Visit the Commendator’s House Museum to see a rich collection of medieval objects found in the abbey cloister
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