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Ephrata Cloister

632 W Main St, at the intersection of Rt. 272 and Rt. 322, Ephrata, PA 17522-1717
+1 717-733-6600
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Review Highlights
Don't forget to take your camera!

Fascinating history; very Shaker-like building structures; every angle could be an extraordinary... read more

Reviewed 5 days ago
Phoebe5232
,
Carlisle, Pennsylvania
Very Enjoyable and Informative!

I am so glad that we took the time to visit Ephrata Cloister on our recent visit to Pennsylvania... read more

Reviewed 6 days ago
CD D
,
Warrington, Pennsylvania
Read all 314 reviews
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One of America's earliest religious communities, the Historic Ephrata Cloister was founded in 1732 by German settlers seeking spiritual goals rather than earthly rewards. Gathered in unique European style buildings, the community consisted of celibate Brothers and Sisters, and a married congregation of families.At the zenith of the community in the 1740s and 1750s, about 300 members worked and worshiped at the Cloister. Today, the National Historic Landmark is open for tours, special programs, and on-going research opportunities.
  • Excellent67%
  • Very good28%
  • Average3%
  • Poor1%
  • Terrible1%
Travellers talk about
“guided tour” (55 reviews)
“gift shop” (36 reviews)
Closed Now
Hours
Hours Today: 9:00 AM - 5:00 PM
Suggested Duration: 1-2 hours
LOCATION
632 W Main St, at the intersection of Rt. 272 and Rt. 322, Ephrata, PA 17522-1717
CONTACT
Website
+1 717-733-6600
Write a ReviewReviews (314)
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All reviews
"religious community"
in 25 reviews
"guided tour"
in 55 reviews
"gift shop"
in 36 reviews
"interesting history"
in 13 reviews
"small museum"
in 11 reviews
"pa history"
in 4 reviews
"short movie"
in 5 reviews
"beautiful property"
in 4 reviews
"interesting place"
in 7 reviews
"walk around"
in 6 reviews
"two hours"
in 6 reviews
"ask questions"
in 4 reviews
"lancaster county"
in 12 reviews
"sect"
in 20 reviews
"conrad"
in 26 reviews
"ephraim"
in 45 reviews
"followers"
in 8 reviews
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1 - 10 of 308 reviews

Reviewed 5 days ago

Fascinating history; very Shaker-like building structures; every angle could be an extraordinary photo.

Thank Phoebe5232
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 6 days ago

I am so glad that we took the time to visit Ephrata Cloister on our recent visit to Pennsylvania. The tour guide was very informative and I learned so much about this religious cult that settled in Ephrata during the early 1700's. The grounds are...More

Thank CD D
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 1 week ago

I am a lover of history, especially church history, and especially, especially church history related to the Anabaptists and Brethren groups. This is a fascinating place to visit to understand the "Holy Experiment" of William Penn and some of the groups that were attracted to...More

Thank plainleanconsulting
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Reviewed 1 week ago

The buildings date to the 1700s, and are well preserved (and reconstructed). The guide did an excellent job of describing how the site came into existence, and its quirky history. I'm glad I included this stop on my visit to the Lancaster and Amish area.

Thank jmch491
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 9 May 2018

If you are in the area, you will not want to miss a tour of the Ephrata Cloister! Here you will learn about the early history of Pennsylvania and William Penn's commitment to welcome all religious persuasions. You will also learn about how Conrad Beissel...More

1  Thank jnickols
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 27 April 2018

Several old buildings and a cemetery. Film about this sect. Celibate believers who lived a tough existence, with belief that sacrifices were necessary to get to heaven. Slept on benches with stone pillows. Woke up at midnight to pray. Very sad energy on the beautiful...More

1  Thank helpingmybro
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
ConradBeissel, General Manager at Ephrata Cloister, responded to this reviewResponded 30 April 2018

We're glad you took the time to experience Ephrata Cloister. While today we think of this as a harsh existence, the fact that it was able to exist in Pennsylvania is a tribute to William Penn's "Holy Experiment" of religious freedom for all. Just as...More

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
A TripAdvisor Member
Virginia Beach, Virginia
568
Reviewed 23 April 2018 via mobile

Off the beaten path. Interesting historically and kind of an odd story of beliefs as well as the way the group lived.

Thank A TripAdvisor Member
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 28 March 2018

If you are at all curious about people who choose to live monk-like celibate lives apart from the rest of the world, this is a place to see. This site brings to life the story of the man who created the community and explains the...More

Thank ConnecticutLocavore
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 5 March 2018

As history buffs with a particular interest in religion, this was right up our alley. We were glad we happened to arrive just in time for a guided tour, because it was a chilly day that would have made standing outside listening to the stations...More

1  Thank sarahthe1001
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 16 February 2018

First you see a movie, and then get a tour. The guides are very good. If you don't take the tour, some buildings will be off-limits. The whole Cloister story is one of the most fascinating chapters in American history. It was a celibate community,...More

2  Thank HTalisker
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Questions & Answers
saramay
18 September 2016|
AnswerShow all 9 answers
Response from ConradBeissel | Property representative |
Tours begin with the 15 minute video and then you proceed with a guide to the two main buildings the Sisters' House and their Meetinghouse. The guided portion is about 45 - 50 minutes in length. if you add in the video... More
0
Votes
59hoya
26 February 2015|
AnswerShow all 2 answers
Response from ConradBeissel | Property representative |
Ephrata Cloister will be closed on Easter Sunday. We will be open from 9 - 5 on Monday April 6th (Easter Monday).
0
Votes
59hoya
26 February 2015|
Answer
Response from blaenboy1 | Reviewed this property |
Sorry, I don't know the answer to that!
0
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