In the centre of England, you would expect bustling towns and city’s, mirroring most of the rest of the nation. But instead, here lies the Peak District. A vast expanse of fields, dales, edges and farms with tonnes of curiosities and places to explore. From those looking for an extreme sporting holiday with rock-climbing and other intense activities, to those wanting a peaceful escape back to nature, the Peak District has something to offer everyone. Here are some of the best spots in the Peak District not to be missed.
Hope Valley, Derbyshire
Being one of the most beloved and protected areas of the Peak District, Hope Valley has much to offer for the tourists who visit.
With some of the best views and most picturesque villages in the country, in this area there are countless unspoiled natural attractions to marvel at while on the famous walks around the location. Places like Winnats Pass, Mam Tor and the Great Ridge are examples of these.
One of the more special experiences on offer here is the Blue John Cavern Tour. Here, you will take a plunge under the earth’s surface and explore the underground world of this majestic cave network. Veins of the beautiful gemstone, blue john, glint in the low-light of the cave. Adding to the alluring atmosphere of the cave itself.
Ladybower Reservoir is a large reservoir with a direct road from Hope Valley, only a very short drive away. This idyllic piece of the Peak District is a former village, and was flooded in the 30’s ready for the reservoir construction. Lined with thick forests on high embankments around the water, and an aqueduct spanning the width of the lake, Ladybower is a postcard picture waiting for taking.
Known for its iconic sweat treat with the same name, Bakewell is a hub for business and activity in the countryside. With a fairly large population for the Peak District, Bakewell is perfect for those wanting the country experience, with all the comforts of shopping, good food and drink and activities to do.
At Bakewell Old House Museum, you can discover and explore the house itself and the town in general. This 16th Century Tudor building is filled to the brim with an eclectic mix of items. Currently on display are wedding gowns from the area in the 1840’s, but they are always changing up exhibits, so each time you visit there is something fresh and new to learn. This is a perfect visit for those who love history and putting themselves into the shoes of the past.
Bakewell tarts (Bakewell puddings to locals) are a true staple of the area. And none more so than those made at the Old Original Bakewell Pudding Shop. Following a mishap while attempting a strawberry tart, the pudding was born. This shop uses this original recipe to this day, the only original Bakewell Puddings still available.
Once you’ve grabbed yourself ones of these local delicacies, have a walk down to the River Wye for the perfect picnic spot. Watch adorable ducks and their chicks paddle by as you tuck into your puddings. Shops around the river will provide gorgeous handmade food to keep you fuelled while exploring the town.
Natural Formations in the Peak District
Not only does the entire area have a distinct, dynamic beauty just right for hiking. It also has a large concentration of recognised routes for rock climbing, for both very new beginners and seasoned professionals alike. In fact, some of the most famous and most challenging routes in Europe are dotted around this national park.
Where to go
Stanage Edge – This beautiful spot outside Hathersage offers stunning views of the High Peak, often known as Surprise View. It also has relaxing walks and challenging climbing routes for everyone’s entertainment. The close proximity to the bustling country town of Hathersage make this spot ideal for a day trip out.
The Roaches- Located above Leek and Tittesworth Reservoir, this location is loved by both hikers and climbers. This rugged, steep gritstone ridge is not to be missed. It is composed of two rocky outcrops close to one another, atop which panoramic views of your surroundings are abundant. On a clear day, you can even see Snowdon in Wales! On top of all this sits a pool of water, known as Doxey Pool. Legend has it, a nymph living in the water sits just under the surface and waits for children to grab and pull in.
Edale – Not far from Hope Valley sits the village of Edale. This tiny little settlement may not boast a large amount of facilities or shopping opportunities. But the views, walks and nature it offers more than make up for this. Being central in a valley surrounded by soaring peaks, Edale is a hotspot for hiking. 5, 10 and 15 mile hikes to are be found everywhere. One of the more popular ones being the trek up Kinder Scout, the highest point in the Peak District. Here unforgettable views, unique moorland and even a waterfall are to be marvelled at. And if that wasn’t enough, after your adventure, stop off at the Cheddar Cheese Inn for some delectable hand cooked treats.
The Peak of Your Trip
Although many would prefer to throw themselves into nature in a more exotic or unknown nation, there is plenty of outdoor pursuits waiting for you in the Peak District. Whether you’re just starting to dip your toes into the world of adventure tourism, or are an experienced outdoor tripper, there is always plenty to do here. The location in the centre of the country means it is easily accessible to all, via train or car. So what are you waiting for? Find the Peak of your trip in the Peak District.