Kilburn to Byland Abbey Walk

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15.3 km
This reflects the total elevation gained throughout this route as measured by the GPS file. This includes all ascents and descents, and is higher than what is quoted in most route guides, which simply measure the distance between the starting-point and high-point of the route.
446 m
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Directions to Trailhead

The Kilburn and Byland Abbey Walk is a beautifully scenic route in North York Moors National Park that will provide an amazing view of the surrounding landscape and the chance to view historic buildings. While out on the trail, you will traverse the undulating terrain, making your way through open fields and tranquil forests before visiting the historic ruins of Byland Abbey. Be sure to bring a GPS or trail map along for this walk, as some areas can be tricky to navigate.

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Route Description

If you want to experience the beautiful scenery and local history of the North York Moors, and don’t mind exploring a bit of a longer trail, then the Kilburn to Byland Abbey Walk will be a great option for you to enjoy a fun day on the trail.

Setting out from the trailhead in the village of Kilburn, you will make your way to the southeast along the road before branching off to the east in order to climb uphill across the open fields. After traversing the undulating landscape and passing through Olstead, you will continue on to the northeast and pass through Snever Wood, climbing further uphill before looping around to the southeast.

Heading downhill, you will eventually arrive at the ruins of the historic Byland Abbey. This building was initially constructed in 1135 and was later disestablished by King Henry VIII in 1538. After taking in the sights and exploring the impressive ruins, make your way to the northeast to open countryside on the way back to the trailhead in Kilburn.

Getting There

To reach the trailhead for the Kilburn and Byland Abbey Walk from Thirsk, head east on Sutton Road for 1.8 mi and turn right onto Moor Lane, following it for another 2.6 mi. Keep straight onto Osgoodby Bank for 1.5 mi, before making a right at Carr Lane. You will find the car park on the left in 75 ft.

Route Details

  • Backcountry Campground


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  • Pets allowed

    Yes - On Leash

  • Family friendly

    Older Children only

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