Gretta Yamada

Gretta Yamada

Published: 21 Sep 2023


Buckfast Abbey, nestled in the picturesque Dartmoor National Park in Devon, England, is not just a stunning architectural masterpiece, but also a place steeped in rich history and captivating tales. This Benedictine monastery, dating back to the 11th century, has witnessed centuries of religious dedication, cultural transformation, and even resilience in the face of adversity.

With its tranquil surroundings, exquisite stained glass windows, and lush gardens, Buckfast Abbey has become a popular tourist destination for those seeking solace, beauty, and a glimpse into the past. However, there is much more to this magnificent landmark than meets the eye. From its connection to a famous tonic wine to its role in the revival of beekeeping, this article will explore 12 fascinating facts about Buckfast Abbey that will leave you amazed and eager to visit this enchanting place.

Table of Contents

Buckfast Abbey is nestled in the beautiful Dartmoor National Park.

Situated amidst the stunning landscape of Dartmoor National Park in Devon, England, Buckfast Abbey is a true architectural masterpiece.

The abbey was founded in 1018 by monks of the Benedictine order.

With a rich history dating back to 1018, Buckfast Abbey was established by monks who followed the Benedictine order, known for their commitment to prayer, work, and hospitality.

The abbey was dissolved during the 16th-century Reformation.

During the 16th-century Reformation, Buckfast Abbey, like many other monasteries in England, was dissolved by King Henry VIII. The monks were forced to leave and the abbey fell into ruins.

Buckfast Abbey was rebuilt in the early 20th century.

In the early 20th century, a group of monks from France reestablished Buckfast Abbey, embarking on a remarkable journey to restore the abbey to its former glory.

The abbey is famous for its bees and honey production.

Buckfast Abbey is renowned for its beekeeping tradition, with the monks keeping bees and producing high-quality honey that is loved by locals and visitors alike.

Buckfast Abbey is home to a vibrant community of Benedictine monks.

The abbey is currently home to a thriving community of Benedictine monks who live a life of contemplation, prayer, and work within the abbey’s tranquil surroundings.

The abbey’s gardens are a sight to behold.

Buckfast Abbey boasts stunning gardens that are meticulously maintained and offer a peaceful retreat for visitors. From colorful flowerbeds to serene water features, the gardens are a true haven of tranquility.

The abbey produces its own wine.

Buckfast Abbey has its own winery where the monks produce Buckfast Tonic Wine, a popular beverage known for its unique blend of flavors and aromatic qualities.

The abbey’s library houses a treasure trove of ancient manuscripts.

Buckfast Abbey’s library is a treasure trove of knowledge, containing a vast collection of ancient manuscripts, rare books, and historical documents that give fascinating insights into the abbey’s past.

The abbey offers a variety of retreats and workshops.

Buckfast Abbey welcomes visitors to participate in a range of retreats and workshops, providing opportunities for spiritual growth, mindfulness, and personal development.

Buckfast Abbey has a unique blend of architectural styles.

The abbey’s architecture is a fascinating blend of medieval, Gothic, and modern styles, showcasing the evolving history and craftsmanship of different periods.

The abbey hosts concerts and cultural events throughout the year.

Buckfast Abbey is not only a place for spiritual contemplation but also a vibrant cultural hub. It hosts a wide range of concerts, exhibitions, and events that attract visitors from far and wide.


In conclusion, Buckfast Abbey is an extraordinary landmark with a rich history and captivating features. From its origin as a humble monastery to its transformation into a magnificent abbey, Buckfast Abbey has become a symbol of spiritual and architectural excellence. The tranquil surroundings, stunning architecture, and diverse activities available make it a must-visit destination for history buffs, architecture enthusiasts, and nature lovers alike.

Visitors to Buckfast Abbey can immerse themselves in the serene atmosphere, explore the lush gardens, admire the intricate craftsmanship of the Abbey Church, and delve into the fascinating history of the monks and their contribution to society. Whether you’re seeking a peaceful retreat, a cultural experience, or simply a scenic spot to relax and unwind, Buckfast Abbey offers a truly unique and unforgettable experience.


1. What is the history behind Buckfast Abbey?

Buckfast Abbey has a long and intriguing history. It was originally founded in the 11th century but was dissolved during the Dissolution of the Monasteries. It was later restored in the 19th century by a group of exiled French Benedictine monks, who transformed it into the magnificent structure that stands today.

2. Can visitors tour the Abbey Church?

Absolutely! The Abbey Church is open to visitors and offers a guided tour where you can learn about its fascinating architecture, artistry, and religious significance. You can also attend services or simply take a quiet moment for reflection and contemplation.

3. Are there any activities for children at Buckfast Abbey?

Yes, there are plenty of activities for children at Buckfast Abbey. They can explore the interactive educational exhibits, participate in workshops, or enjoy the outdoor playground and picnic areas. There are also special events and programs designed specifically for children throughout the year.

4. Can I visit the gardens at Buckfast Abbey?

Absolutely! The gardens at Buckfast Abbey are open to the public and are a beautiful oasis of tranquility. You can stroll through the various themed gardens, including the sensory garden, herb garden, and orchard, or simply relax and enjoy the peaceful surroundings.

5. Is there a gift shop or café at Buckfast Abbey?

Yes, Buckfast Abbey has a gift shop where you can purchase unique souvenirs, books, and local products. There is also a café on-site where you can enjoy a delicious meal or indulge in some homemade treats and refreshing beverages.