Ely Cathedral
Ely Cathedral
4.5
Historic SitesArchitectural BuildingsReligious Sites
1:00 PM - 3:30 PM
Monday
10:00 AM - 4:00 PM
Tuesday
10:00 AM - 4:00 PM
Wednesday
10:00 AM - 4:00 PM
Thursday
10:00 AM - 4:00 PM
Friday
10:00 AM - 4:00 PM
Saturday
10:00 AM - 4:00 PM
Sunday
1:00 PM - 3:30 PM
About
With its unique 14th century octagonal lantern tower, Ely Cathedral is counted among the wonders of the medieval world. Much of the Cathedral is over 900 years old and it offers a rich architectural and historical experience, including the sumptuous 13th century Quire and beautiful 14th century Lady Chapel, the largest in the UK.
Duration: 2-3 hours
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  • Gailusha
    Edinburgh, United Kingdom30 contributions
    4.0 of 5 bubbles
    One of England's most beautiful cathedrals
    This is a really beautiful cathedral. To my mind, one of the most beautiful I've seen I England (Liverpool Met and St. Paul's probably slightly ahead in my estimation). The octagon tower really is incredible. The grounds were also very nice and a relaxed place to sit and enjoy the external views of the cathedral, which are also superb. The staff were friendly. The entrance fee at £10 felt a bit steep, but I appreciate maintaining the site must be costly. Definitely worth a visit when in Ely.
    Visited May 2023
    Traveled solo
    Written May 27, 2023
  • tincress
    Christchurch, United Kingdom131 contributions
    5.0 of 5 bubbles
    Dog friendly Cathedral
    We had an amazing time in this fantastic historic building. We were especially grateful they allowed us to take our dog inside too. This made our visit possible and very enjoyable. We visited the stained glass museum too, which was fascinating.
    Visited June 2023
    Traveled as a couple
    Written June 1, 2023
  • RDS61
    Chester, United Kingdom1,988 contributions
    5.0 of 5 bubbles
    Magnificent
    The architecture in Ely cathedral is magnificent, unlike any other cathedral I have seen in the UK. The paintings on the ceiling running the full length of the cathedral are something to behold. You could spend hours admiring the details in the stonework and stained glass windows. The entry fee is £10 for adults, but worth every penny. There are long term car parks within walking distance.
    Visited July 2023
    Traveled as a couple
    Written July 3, 2023
  • Peter W
    2 contributions
    4.0 of 5 bubbles
    Beautiful city, spoilt by ridiculous costs and bad mannered tourists.
    Stopped at travel lodge Ely. Vibrant craft and food market .....downside was market Square fish and chip shop disgraceful rip off. (1 haddock plus 1 small fish, 1 large chips between us plus 1 diet coke...£25.50!! ). Cathedral incredibly beautiful and wood carvings unbelievable. Lovely city but too full of ignorant tourists I'm afraid with little or no manners who have little or no control over their children.....dogs 100% better behaved! Gave it 4 stars as place is historically beautiful and of interest but spoilt unfortunately by crazy prices and rammed with tourists so won't be going back in a hurry.
    Visited July 2023
    Traveled as a couple
    Written July 4, 2023
  • 111TWIGAMINHAAFRIKA
    Bristol, United Kingdom7,801 contributions
    5.0 of 5 bubbles
    Stunning cathedral in little Ely...
    'Wow', how can such a little dwelling have such a magnificent cathedral but this defines Ely as a city and it was indeed a place of such importance back in the day. We paid for combination ticket of the cathedral and the Glass museum and its worth purchasing the fabulous guidebook. Stunning architecture, everywhere, glass stained windows, so much to explore- amazing!
    Visited June 2023
    Traveled with friends
    Written July 14, 2023
  • Graham
    London, United Kingdom30 contributions
    5.0 of 5 bubbles
    Wonderful for lovers of historic buildings
    Fabulous place to visit and make sure you fit in the tower tour which is beautiful. We were fortunate to arrive later in the day when there is no entrance fee and a rehearsal for evensong was going on. One of the guides let us in a side door and provided excellent information. We were so impressed that we returned the following day and booked the tower tour. This was definitely a highlight of our trip.
    Visited June 2023
    Written July 22, 2023
  • NB16
    Vevey, Switzerland95 contributions
    4.0 of 5 bubbles
    Beautiful cathedral in cute English town!
    We visited Ely cathedral on a beautiful day in July. We went to the Sunday service rather than as tourists so cannot make any comment about price of entry like others have here. The cathedral is stunning. Incredibly impressive structure with beautiful architecture and windows throughout. Well worth a visit and would love to go back another time for an evening event at the cathedral.
    Visited July 2023
    Traveled with friends
    Written August 21, 2023
  • Sarah B
    London, United Kingdom81 contributions
    5.0 of 5 bubbles
    Surprisingly engaging for kids
    Another place I dragged my 7yo and 4yo around and they enjoyed far more than expected. There were an impressive 4 types of kids trails for them to try as we walked around. Our favorite was the Green Man one. The cathedral is beautiful inside especially the stained glass and has a fascinating history. Also nice that it didn’t feel like the kids had to be silent at all times which was nice. Stain
    Visited August 2023
    Traveled with family
    Written August 24, 2023
  • Thomas M
    Offenbach, Germany7,066 contributions
    5.0 of 5 bubbles
    One of the Most Beautiful (and Monumental) Cathedrals in England: A Must-See!
    Magnificent, must-see Anglican Cathedral whose present building dates back to 1089 AD. Originally built in a monumental Roman style, parts of the church have been redesigned in the Gothic style. Plenty to see here, and it's all spectacular, fully justifying the UKP 10 entrance fee for an adult. You can also book a tour for more information, as you'll only get a leaflet with basic info and the layout of the church with points of interest. You can take a tour of the massive West Tower too, but because of a knee injury I couldn't do it. The Galilee Porch is the main entrance for visitors, and you'll immediately get an impression of the grandeur of this huge building. Other highlights include the Lady Chapel and the Octagon Tower in the centre of the church. Impressive marble monuments and painted windows abound. Once you're done with the church, head to the Cathedral grounds via the South Exit, and behind those you'll find The Almonry Restaurant for a quick bite. Ely Cathedral is one of the most impressive churches in all of England, and my personal favourite.
    Visited August 2023
    Written August 28, 2023
  • John B
    Cambridgeshire, United Kingdom875 contributions
    4.0 of 5 bubbles
    I remember when entrance was free.
    The cathedral is a truly remarkable piece of architecture, impressive from miles away and in every detail once you reach it. It was not however built to be a money making tourist attraction which it gave me the impression of having become. When I frequently visited the cathedral in years gone by entrance cost nothing, and visitors were invited to leave a donation, but now, especially with the various extra charges to see everything it is prohibitively costly. Having paid an arm and a leg to get in a tannoy message informed us to move on as a wedding was to take place. At the moment the front of the building is spoilt by building work but the inside is as magnificent as ever. The cathedral octagon is something one just must see, it s a wonder, but from now on I shall send my guests in while I wait in the park outside. One bonus - car parks in Ely are free.
    Visited September 2023
    Traveled with friends
    Written September 10, 2023
These reviews are the subjective opinion of Tripadvisor members and not of TripAdvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.

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Detailed Reviews: Reviews ordered by recency and descriptiveness of user-identified themes such as wait time, length of visit, general tips, and location information.

Popular mentions

4.5
4.5 of 5 bubbles3,013 reviews
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NorthantsAquababe
Wollaston, UK318 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Jan 2020 • Couples
Last came on a school trip in 1973 when dressed in medieval outfits to celebrate 1000 years of the cathedral!! Did remember a lot of the inside, especially the tower. We did the tower tour which was well worth it, including entrance to cathedral, museum and free coffee/tea in cafe (which would have cost £5 for two) for £19 each so good value for money as you will spend a few hours there.

Tower tour very good - the chap who took us was very knowledgable. A little claustrophobic walking up but worth it for the view from the roof. Lucky we had a clear sunny day.

Beautiful cathedral and little city.
Written January 23, 2020
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Daru500
Halesowen, UK181 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Oct 2020
We visited Ely Cathedral on the return journey from our holiday in Suffolk, and we were blown away with how magnificent the Cathedral is. It towers over the city of Ely (which is well worth having a look around, both the town and the river) and is truly breathtaking. Inside is just as wonderful and i would recommend anyone to look up, the ceilings and lantern tower are fantastic. There is some wonderful stained glass and it floods the cathedral of light and the stained glass museum is very interesting and i recommend the combined tickets.
The covid secure measures made the building safe and staff were very good in making sure people kept to the rules. All tickets are sold online at the moment and the Ely Cathedral Website is very easy to use and you can get e tickets to use straight away.
I would definitely visit again and would be good to see bits i missed this time round.
The admission fee was well worth it!
Written November 4, 2020
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Harnser48
Norfolk, UK172 contributions
3.0 of 5 bubbles
Jan 2020
Amazing architecture very awe inspiring with it's ornate lantern tower built to replace a steeple when it fell down. Superb ceiling along the nave.
The admission is £8-00 per adult which considering this is a place of worship and prayer is disgusting. Jesus would most certainly have had something to say about this outrageous charge
Written January 9, 2020
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Greg
Cambridge, UK5,237 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Feb 2020 • Solo
Ely Cathedral is simply a colossus venue with majestic features and exudes history from every angle.

This was my first visit and I was fascinated by the sheer size and length of the Cathedral. At one end, the High Altar is a marvel to behold and the ornate nave and Octagon are also quite mesmerising. The stained glass windows are something else too!

The 8 GBP admission fee is well worth paying to visit - and goes towards the 6,000 GBP daily upkeep costs. During my visit, I was able to see the Crowns & Gowns exhibition which showcases props and costumes from the likes of The Crown, Macbeth and The King’s Speech, all of which were filmed at Ely Cathedral. The Stained Glass Museum is also worth a visit but costs and additional 4.50 GBP.

All in all, this was a sensational visit.
Written February 18, 2020
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

N H
Kingston upon Thames, UK1 contribution
1.0 of 5 bubbles
Aug 2021
Not worth the money. £8 per adult - to see half of the Cathedral, the rest is closed for service - you are not allowed to take picture of the service site.

I feel ripped off for paying 2 adults + 2 teen, to see exactly what we saw while queuing to enter any buy tickets.

Yes, as per others comments, it is filled with large plastic balloon of earth.

Obviously it is a magnificent building with characters and architecture to admire, but £8 to see half of it - not worth it.
Written August 3, 2021
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Shirley and Pau... D
March, UK468 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Mar 2020
We had a great and very interesting visit. A beautiful building with free tour guides to inform you about all aspects of the cathedral. Also we paid to see the stain glass museum on the upper level. Beware there are 45 steps to reach the upper level where the stain glass is housed. Also on show right now are copies of the original costumes used by actors in the ‘ Crown ‘ tv series. Adult entry is £8 for the cathedral interior but worth paying an extra £4.50 to have access to the stain glass museum and the ‘ Crown ‘ costumes.
Written March 3, 2020
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Allyson W
14 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Jan 2022
We visited on a quiet Wednesday in January and spent almost three hours in total. Absolutely beautiful building with stunning architecture. We picked up the art guide leaflet to take round with us as there are some really interesting pieces to explore. The volunteers on duty were very welcoming.
We also booked tickets for the Stained glass museum - well worth the extra £4.50 - this is located at gallery level and access is via a stone spiral staircase. Fantastic collection of glass through the ages and really interesting panels taking you through the history of stained glass. Lovely shop up there.
The refectory was closed.
At the time of our visit the site team were packing up the Christmas decorations and hoisting them up to the gallery - lovely to see a team who are usually behind the scenes. We tried to leave a donation using the tap to donate point at the main entrance but it was out of order.
Written January 14, 2022
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Mike J
Chepstow, UK883 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Aug 2021
We visited this stunning Cathedral and were surprised at it’s size considering how small the city of Ely itself is.
It is necessary to prebook admission tickets online and the admission charge is currently £8 per adult. We chose to have a guided tour and for only an additional £1.50 per person it is certainly recommended. Our guide was very informative and was able to tell us a lot of the history of this magnificent building. The ticket permits visitors to spend as long as they like in the building after the guided tour. The Cathedral is really impressive and must certainly be one of the best in Britain. Pity about the shrieking disruptive children whose parents clearly cannot control them.. Why on earth they drag them along to view religious sites when they clearly do not want to be there heaven only knows.
Written November 25, 2021
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

TonyM67
Marlow, UK118 contributions
4.0 of 5 bubbles
Jul 2021 • Couples
Ely cathedral is the main feature of this small city. It stands like a sentinel in the fens and has done so since about 1100. It has majestic architecture both inside and out. Standard admission is £8, but guided tours of the main cathedral and tower are also available. Currently, seating and pews are limited as a precautionary Covid measure. A huge globe is currently suspended in the nave which makes for a spectacular exhibit.
Written August 4, 2021
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Shawn M
Abbots Langley, UK92 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Aug 2020 • Solo
This the second Cathedral in my "quest" to see all pre 1500 CE (AD in old money) Cathedrals and/or Abbeys. Such a lovely building. So much to see inside.(I didnt pay for the 2nd floor "Stain glass tour/museum" as would have had to pay £12+ instead of the £8 entrance fee... The staff are VERY friendly and are always ready to talk and give information. Take you time to look around.. to look at the stain glass windows, to look at the entrance ceiling - it shows the 72 generations from Adam to Jesus.. (Now I don't believe in all that but it is still fantastic to look at) and especially look at the Octagon Tower. Great building..oh and note that the Forehill Car Park is free, (up to 4 hours) which is a very short walk away from the Cathedral
Written August 23, 2020
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.
Thank you for your kind review and good luck with your Cathedral quest!
Written September 2, 2020
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of Tripadvisor LLC.

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