If you haven’t visited up North in England you haven’t really visited England. You might be surprised how hilly the landscape is. Nothing compared to the flatness of England in the Midlands and The Cotswold. Can you imagine that I had been in this country for over 20 years and had never visited the Peak District Valley, it is only when my middle son moved to Manchester for his university years that I finally set foot in that region and I was taken over by the wilderness and the beautiful landscapes.
If your idea of a perfect weekend includes walking in beautiful countryside, exploring old country towns and eating delicious fresh food then this could be the destination for you!
The Peak District comprises 550 square miles of land stretching across Derbyshire, Nottinghamshire and Staffordshire with plenty to see and do on offer.
Kinder Scout Walk & Jacobs Ladder
Distance: 8.4 miles/13.5 km
Walk time: 3.5-4.5 hours
Total ascent: 670 m/2,198 ft
Kinder Scout is a beautiful spot in the Peak District, which also happens to be one of Britain’s most popular national parks. Hiking up Kinder Mountain will give you unparalleled views and allow for some great photo opportunities! You can take many different routes up there but if I could recommend just one it would be Jacob’s Ladder – this short yet steep path begins at an absolutely stunning packhorse bridge over flowing with waterfalls below as well as lush green fields sloping gently downward from all sides.
You can choose between a variety of different walks, with varying lengths from 8 – 10 miles. The options are geared towards those who want an easier or more challenging walk depending on your preference!
The Kinder Scout is an ancient pile of stones that can be found off the main path, but if you want to experience what it’s like at a higher elevation then make your way up towards 636 meters. The trig point on top gives great views for miles around!
To reach the top, you must begin at Edale where you will leave your car or arrive by train and go via the Pennine Way trail. After climbing Jacob’s Ladder (a challenging feat), continue on footpaths up to Kinder Low trig point for an amazing view of England before returning down either route – whether it be over mountains or through uplands! I spent the day hiking through rugged mountain terrain with a breathtaking view of lush mountains and sheep grazing on their side. The views are really breathtaking and will take you back in time to the romantic literature of Emile Bronte and Wuthering Heights.
Buxton Spa town
We headed to Buxton in the evening to spend the night at the local pub and have dinner.
The town of Buxton, in the Peak District National Park, is probably best known for its spa waters. But visitors looking to escape the hustle and bustle of modern life will find a wealth of other things to do here too. The Dovedale valley has been a popular tourist destination since Georgian times when it became famous for its ‘picturesque views’.
We stayed at the Queens’ head hotel that is attached to the pub. The room was clean and functional and in a perfect location to wander around town although in the newer part and further away from the old town. Parking can be tricky while staying at the hotel. There’s no parking at the hotel and there’s a car park nearby that works fine on the weekend unless it’s market day.
When you see it, the pub will feel like a throwback to your childhood. The interior is full of ’80s nostalgia and has gaming machines that are sure to keep everyone entertained! Staff members here were very welcoming with good beer options—lagers & spirits alike made for an enjoyable time spent by all who visit this quaint little establishment.
We choose to have dinner at the Columbine Restaurant offering a choice of traditional, vegetarian, vegan and gluten-free options. It’s a small family-run restaurant and was a delightful place to go for dinner. The food is fresh and the atmosphere was great, the staff were friendly & helpful throughout our experience there.
We didn’t really make the effort to visit Buxton as we headed off the next day for another walk not so hilly this time but ever so charming. I would definitely recommend spending more time in Buxton if you can. The grade I listed Crescent in Buxton, designed by John Carr for the 5th Duke of Devonshire is an architectural masterpiece made to rival the Royal Crescent in Bath.
Peak District National Park
The next day we headed towards the Peak District National Park to take the Dovedale stepping stones walk. The walk is in the ‘White Peak Area‘, which includes the rolling hills of Derbyshire. Unlike Edale located in The ‘Dark Peak Area’ that would take the day before, these areas have gentler terrain with fewer steep ascents or descents. The walk from the River Dove to Dovedale is a popular one in England, especially when the weather’s good. The views are stunning as you walk down the path. It’s hard to believe that this little spot in nature can pack so much beauty! On a sunny day, you can see bright green trees everywhere around you! And then suddenly huge rocks appear out of nowhere on your right or left – which is when I noticed this magnificent landmark called “Ilam Rock.” It’s an amazing place for photographs.
The Peak District is a beautiful place to explore and enjoy with family and friends. Whether you’re looking for a group hike, an escape from the city or just want to spend time relaxing in nature, there are plenty of activities on offer that will make your weekend away unforgettable. You can find out more about our upcoming trips by signing up for email updates at the bottom of this page.