Adult only holiday park Peak District

Top 10 Walks in the Peak District

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On the 24th of April 1932, hundreds of men and women defied the law to walk over hills and moorland to the plateau of Kinder Scout, the highest point in Derbyshire. This would ignite the right to roam movement and lead to the formation of Britain’s first National Park, the Peak District. Today the Peak District covers 555 square miles, of which 202 square miles is open access land. In total there are 1,600 miles of public rights of way including footpaths, bridleways and tracks, absolute heaven for people wanting to get out into nature and enjoy a walk. These routes range from challenging hilltop scrambles to gentle meanders by babbling brooks, the Peak District boasts some of the best walks in England, but what are the best Peak District walks? Please join me as I explore, in my opinion, 10 of the best places to walk in the Peak District.  

Kinder Scout 

Let’s start with one of the biggest and most iconic walks in the Peak District. As previously mentioned, Kinder Scout is the highest point in Derbyshire and the Peak District. There are many ways to do this walk, but the most popular start from either Edale or Hayfield. My personal preference is to start in Edale. Most routes from here will start at the Old Nags Head, the official start of the Pennine Way and a good place to have a well-deserved drink at the end of your walk! I like to climb up the Grade 1 scramble of Grindsbrook Clough and then come back down via Jacob’s Ladder. This walk is best done in the Summer to give you good conditions and warm weather. It can be very challenging here in the Winter and only advisable for seasoned walkers.

Kinder Scout


Dovedale 

The famous steppingstones here attract a huge number of visitors each year. It can be done as an easy little stroll from the National Trust car park round the steppingstones and back the other side of the river. Alternatively, you can scale the heights of Thorpe Cloud, carry on along the river to quaint village of Milldale or loop round to admire the pretty Swiss Chalet style cottages at Ilam. What I would always advise at Dovedale would be to get here early to avoid the crowds. The National Trust car park normally has a café depending on the time of year and day. 

Dovedale


The Great Ridge

The Great Ridge

Known to be one of the best ridge walks in the country, this Peak District walk gives stunning views over Edale, Hope Valley and even the edge of Kinder Scout. The main highlight of the walk takes you from Mam Tor to Lose Hill, but how you link back up with where you park is up to you. It can be done as a short loop staying up in the hills, a longer loop walking from Hope to Castleton down the river, or you could even do that section by train if you were so inclined. Parking can be in Castleton at various car parks or roadside, or if you are early / lucky enough to get in there is a National Trust Car Park on Mam Nick for easy access on to Mam Tor. This spot is fantastic for sunrise photography, and you often get cloud inversions here. After a walk the charming village of Castleton has many pubs and cafes. 


White Edge 

This area is for the animal lovers. The White Edge is comprised of Baslow, Curbar and Froggatt Edge. There is a heard of very friendly Highland cows that live on Baslow Edge and if you are lucky, you can quite often see deer near Curbar Edge, all this along with the various birds, adders and smaller animals that call this beautiful place home. This walk gives you a great route to see it all, but it very easy just to pick certain sections. Curbar Edge is a particularly good place to go and watch the sun set. Afterwards there are great pubs in the local villages. 

White Edge, With A Beautiful Highland Cow


Chatsworth Estate 

With 1,000 acres of park land, this is the go-to place for dog walks in the Peak District. Be advised that there is a lot of livestock as well as Fallow and Red deer about, so a lead will be needed. Chatsworth itself is one of the most beautiful stately homes in the world with beautifully landscaped gardens, but I always find the grounds just as impressive. You can take a gentle stroll down the banks over the River Derwent, walk to the charming village of Edensor and it’s award winning tea room or climb the hills behind Chatsworth and in to Stand Wood to see the aqueduct. Here is a selection of walks that Chatsworth themselves recommend.  

Red Deer At Chatsworth Estate


View Over The Dragons Back


The Dragon’s Back 

This location is very popular on Instagram as it is stunning any time of year and any time of day, but I particularly love to go here and watch the sun rise. The old limestone reef knolls of Chrome Hill and Parkhouse Hill look like mini mountains, and together form the spines that gives the Dragon’s back it’s name. If you are staying us, on one of the best campsites in the Peak District, you can actually see the top of Chrome Hill from our dog walk. A lot of people will do this walk from Earl Sterndale, but I find it easier to park in Hollingsclough and take this route. We have also put a route together that you can walk here from the site, just ask in our reception.

Ladybower Reservoir 

Famed for being a test site for the bouncing bomb, this area is home to some of the best hikes in the Peak District. There is a great range of walks you can do. You can stay close to the water, you can meander through the woodlands, or you can be up on Derwent Edge and enjoy the spectacular view from above; particularly fantastic during heather season (August into September). If you visit after a pro-longed period of heavy rain, you will get to see the water billowing over the dam and the famous ‘plug holes’ in full action. You can park at the visitor’s centre at Fairholmes for a fee, or there is free parking on the road in and out on the A57. A visit to the Yorkshire Bridge in afterwards for refreshment is a great end to the day. 

The Famous Ladybower Reservoir


Three Shires Head

Three Shires Head 

This is the point where Cheshire, Derbyshire and Staffordshire meet, at a beautiful old pack horse bridge. As well as being a great walk to get here, this spot is extremely popular for wild swimming. This walk is one of the best circular walks in the Peak District. It can be done as a figure of 8 as suggested here or could easily be cut in half for a shorter walk. The car park at Gradbach only has space for about 20 cars, so again arriving here early is advisable. 

Monsal Trail 

The Monsal Trail is well known as a haven for traffic free cycling, it follows the old Midlands railway line between Bakewell and Buxton. It is also great for dog friendly walks in the Peak District. The trail is 8.5 miles long in total, so staying on the trail is quite linear. It is possible to walk the length and get a bus back down the A6, but it would take some great timing. However, there are several circular walks that use the trail in part. A personal favourite is walking off the famous Headstone Viaduct and down to Monsal Weir. There are cycle hires at Blackwell Mill and Hassop. Hassop also has a café, so it is a good stopping off point on the trail. 

Monsal Trail Peak District


Padley Gorge

This place is magical all year around, but for me it is best to visit in Autumn. This is arguably one of the most dog friendly walks in the Peak District. Especially in the warm weather there is a stream that runs through the gorge that is great for a drink and a dip for your furry friend. A walk here is easily combined with going to Higger Tor, Surprise View or Over Owler Tor. There is road side parking near the top of Padley Gorge (usually an ice cream van or two as well), but this fills up quickly. There is more parking at the bottom end near Grindleford train station, or on the adjacent National Trust property of the Longshaw Estate. 

Padley Gorge


This is my personal top 10, which was difficult to put together as it does miss many fantastic places like the Roaches, Water-Cum-Jolly, Chee Dale and many parts of the Goyt Valley which is a great place to visit if you are camping in Buxton or the surrounding area. Thank you for taking the time to read it, and I hope it inspires you to get out and visit some of these amazing locations. If you decide to make a holiday of it, our 5-star campsite in the Peak District makes a great base. Hopefully we can welcome you here in the future. 

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