Peak District Travel Guide

Mam Tor, Peak District

Introduction and Overview

The Peak District travel guide gives you more information on the first national park in the UK. The area guide includes travel information on local events, transport, facts & figures, entertainment and accommodation giving an insight in to the area.

Situated in the Midlands; the Peak District is a land of contrasts; there are breathtaking landscapes, market towns and villages with character. It is a place of cultural and historical significance and heritage for the UK, with all of these combined there is plenty to see, experience, enjoy and explore.

The area is a good place to visit during the winter if you like to see a picture perfect appearance, the variety of landscapes in the area are possibly at their best during this time. If you like the exploring and walking and then sitting in front of a log fire with a hearty meal then this is the place for you.

There is plenty to see and do in the summer also and with the range of attractions and activities the area caters for most tastes.

The High Peak is where the town of Buxton is located famous as a spa town, Kinder Scout is famous for its moorlands, and there are also canals and historic dams. With its canals the area is a favourite among boating enthusiasts who can indulge their passion in wonderful surroundings.

The Derbyshire Dales attracts a number of climbing enthusiasts. Be sure to see the limestone valleys in the area which boasts rare flowers. For those that like history a visit to market towns such as Ashbourne is well worth a visit with its country charm and bustling markets.

The Staffordshire Moorlands have some breathtaking views you can enjoy. Peace and quiet can be found in Dovedale, perfect for relaxing and watching the world go by. In this part of the world you can fish, take a steam train or take in the scenic countryside.

Whether you are after a day out trip or a weekend or week away the Peak District boasts breathtaking scenery, is rich with history offering you the chance to do as much or as little as you wish. The diverse landscapes of the area make it a favourite for those that like the great outdoors.

Walkers and climbers come to region, along with fans of extreme sports and nature lovers. A great place for all the whole family there are guided walks for those that wish to see England's green and pleasant land.

In the summer the Buxton Opera House hosts the Buxton International Festival and the International Gilbert & Sullivan Festival. It also has a live music festival and programmes of opera, dance, comedy and children's shows to help keep the children occupied and amused.

The art of Well Dressing involves decorating springs and wells with pictures using only what nature can provide. This involves a wooden board being soaked in a river for a few days, it is then filled with wet clay. Each village then transfers the outline of the pictures to the clay. Wool and bark are among those used to do this.

The picture is subsequently coloured in, again each village use the method they know best. This intricate artwork can take around a week to complete. The Well Dressing season is from May to September, you can find fresh and original designs in different villages throughout the summer season. This colourful and skilled tradition is one not to be missed when visiting the region.

Buxton is a historic spa town that has become synonymous the with the scenic Peak District. Local attractions include the Buxton Opera House that hosts a number of performances including opera, dance, musical and children’s shows each year.

It also hosts a number of festivals in the year including the annual Buxton Festival. The town centre is home to the Buxton Museum and Art Gallery that showcases the archaeology, geology and history and the Peak District with a number of exhibitions, events and workshops.

Other places of note include the Pavilion Gardens; the Grade II listed Devonshire Dome, the Grade I listed Crescent dating back to the 18th century and the Go Ape adventure course for fun and adventure.

Matlock is the county town of Derbyshire; it is a popular base for visitors exploring the southern attractions in the Peak District. Local attractions include the Crich Tramway Village that includes the National Tramway Museum and the opportunity to ride on the historic trams.

Gullivers Kingdom Theme Park in nearby Matlock Bath features plenty of rides, attractions and shows offering a fun filled day for the entire family. Other attractions includes Matlock Farm Park; a working farm offering a fun and educational day out, the Heights of Abraham is known for its cable cars set in a scenic setting with caverns and a hilltop park.

Hall Leys Park is a popular destination for visitors of all ages, conveniently located in Matlock town centre there is a boating lake, paddling pool, miniature train, tennis and bowling facilities.

Bakewell is a market town located in the Derbyshire Dales, 12 miles from Buxton. Notable landmarks include the Grade I listed, 12th century All Saints Church, the parish church of Bakewell. The Bakewell Old House Museum is an early Tudor house, visitors can explore a number of rooms that include Victorian and Tudor features and a number of collections.

Bakewell is an attractive town located on the River Wye, there are a number of independent shops, cafes and courtyards, with the opportunity for scenic riverside walks, it town is a popular destination for visitors to the Peak District. Bakewell hosts the annual Bakewell Show in August along with a number of festivals and events throughout the year.

Leek is a market town located in Staffordshire on the southern edge of the Peak District. The town is surrounded by the countryside and includes the notable gritstone rock formations of the Roaches.

The town includes a number of independent shops and is known or its antique shops and art galleries. There are a number of indoor and outdoor markets held in Leek each week where visitors can see antique, collectors and food markets.

The market town of Chesterfield is located between the cities of Derby and Sheffield on the edge of the Peak District, 25 miles east of Buxton. The charming town has regular markets since the 12th century, current regular markets include a farmers’ and flea market.

St Mary's and All Saint Church is a Grade I listed Anglican Church also known as the Crooked Spire in reference at its twisted spire, tours are available with wonderful views from the top of the tower.

The Chesterfield Museum and Art Gallery takes visitors through a journey of the town’s history from Roman times to the Industrial Revolution to the modern day. Entertainment and leisure are catered for in the town with a cinema, theatre, concert and exhibition centre, park with boating lake and miniature train.

The city of Derby located in southern Derbyshire is well located for exploring the Peak District. Derby is located 35 miles from Buxton in the heart of the Peak District. The city dates back to Roman times and played a leading role in the industrial revolution during the 18th and 19th centuries.

The city has plenty of attractions visitors can discover, one of the best known is Derby Cathedral known for its architecture and tower and St Mary’s Chapel located on the banks of the river Derwent. The Derby and Art Gallery has a city centre location and includes a diverse range of collections and exhibitions from artists from the UK and internationally.

Other attractions include the Derby QUAD featuring a cinema, gallery, café and workshop and Pickford’s House museum where visitors can explore a Georgian house as it would have been in yesteryear.

Shopping facilities in the city include the Westfield Derby shopping centre inkling a choice of shops and eateries and the Cathedral Quarter that includes restaurants, cafes, bars, historical landmarks and live performances.

The city of Sheffield is conveniently located for exploring the Peak District. Sheffield is located in South Yorkshire close to the edge of the Peak District under 30 miles from Buxton. Sheffield includes a number of attractions for visitors to explore including the Millennium Art Gallery, Sheffield Botanical Gardens that includes plants from around the world.

The Winter Garden is an iconic Sheffield building that houses 2,000 species of plants. Other attractions include the Kelham Island Museum, showcasing the rich industrial history of the city through time to the modern day.

Buildings of note include the historic Sheffield Cathedral noted for being the oldest building in the city and for its impressive architecture. Shopping facilities include the Meadowhall Shopping Centre located a few miles outside the city centre; with a range of shops, outlets restaurants, cafes and cinema.

Entertainment is available in one of Sheffield’s renowned theatres where visitors can enjoy a number of productions including in-house shows and touring productions.

The Peak District and surrounding region offers visitors a choice of holidays and breaks to enjoy. The central location in England means it is accessible by road, rail and coach. The charming towns and villages retain much of their tradition and character that make them fascinating for the visitor. The range of activities and attractions mean you do not have to go abroad for a relaxing or action packed break.

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