Activities In the Peak District
There are a wealth of activities to try in the Peak District National Park. Get Inspired with some of our tried and tested ideas or contact us for one of Peak Venues expert insider tips
Whether you are a piston-thighed roadie, a pannier-laden tourer, fancy the occasional recreational pedal or just going out with a spin with the family, the Peak District is now the go-to destination for cyclists in the UK
We have lots of handy hints for Cycle trips to the Peak District. Read our Blog for inspiration including:
Cycle Hire on the Monsal Trail
The Monsal Trail runs along the former Midland Railway line for 8.5 miles between Blackwell Mill, in Chee Dale and Coombs Road, at Bakewell. Hassop Station is the best place to hire bikes and there is a great cafe with a small children's play area.
Tissington and High Peak Trails
The Tissington and High Peak Trails are Former railway lines converted to recreational routes for walkers, cyclists and horse-riders. The High Peak Trail runs for 17 miles from near Buxton to High Peak Junction, Cromford and the Tissington Trail runs 13 miles from Parsley Hay to Ashbourne.
Cycle hire, WC and a cafe are all available at Parsley Hay.
You can also hire bikes from Middleton Top Cycle Hire
The Manifold Trail is a short but very attractive walking/cycle route along the route of the former Leek & Manifold Light Railway. Look out for the impressive Thor’s Cave and interesting rock formations along the way.
Carsington Water offers a bike hire service and there are a couple of great routes around the reservoir (the shorter route is perfect for children!) and some of the routes also join onto the nearby High Peak Trail. If you are looking for accommodation close to Carsington Water, please see our sister venues Knockerdown Cottages.
Derwent Cycle Hire located in the Upper Derwent Valley on the shore of the reservoir at Fairholmes. There is a wide range of both easy going and challenging routes around the reservoirs and valley to choose from.
Bike Garage in Bamford offers high-quality mountain bike hire. Catering for groups who wish to take on the world famous Peak District trails.
True North Adventures
A brilliant ebike guiding company that specialise in being able to provide all disciplines, e-biking guides.
Want to try an ebike out for size. Make a day of taking an ebike for a test run from Hassop Station near Bakewell.
A fantastic tailor-made, full suspension e-bike hire experience providing you with what you want without any of the hassle - Peak wide delivery and collection on all hires.
Abseiling at Millers Dale Viaduct on the Monsal Trail.
Clay Pigeon Shooting
Fox House Clay Sports – for clay pigeon shooting near Sheffield.
Yeaveley Estate - for clay pigeon shooting and fishing near Ashbourne
Peak District Clay Pigeon Shooting - for clay pigeon shooting in the Hope Valley and surround area
Quad bikes & Paint balling
Near to Ashbourne Wild Park Derbyshire offers painting balling, quad biking, laser tag and archery.
Quest Paintball offers paint balling, clay pigeon shooting, archery, axe throwing, air pistols, human table football, off road driving
Go Ape at Poole’s Cavern, Buxton
Go Ape is a giant obstacle course up in the trees using ladders, walkways, bridges and tunnels made of wood, rope and super-strong wire, and top it all off with the country’s best zip lines. The Buxton course is set in the heart of the beautiful Peak District National Park and within walking distance of the historic Spa town itself.
For those not wishing to relax the days away, we can recommend a range of walks that can be enjoyed by all ages and fitness levels
You can walk for miles on the old railway line which is great for children, strollers and ideal for the recreational walkers.
The path is mainly mud free which is quite rare in the Peak District.
Favourite Walks from Snap the Peaks
Lathkill Dale - A strenuous 12-mile walk starting from Youlgrave
Robin Hoods Stride - A short but exciting 4-mile walk from Birchover.
Monsal Dale - A moderate 6-mile walk from Monsal Head
Mam Tor - The stone surfaced footpath from the car park to the top of Mam Tor will reward you with one of the most dramatic viewpoints in the Peak District.
Dovedale - A moderate 6-mile walk from Dovedale to Milldale
Milldale to Hartington - An easy 5 mile walk from Milldale to Hartington.
Chrome & Park House Hill - A hard 8-mile walk starting in Longnor
Manifold Valley - A strenuous 12-mile walk in the Manifold Valley
Official Walking Maps for the Peak District
Offering a mix of cultural, heritage and walking based tours.
Dog Walking is very popular with dog walking. With its beautiful country side, from moorlands and woodlands to riverside rambles.
Read about some of our favourite dog walks in the Peak District on our Blog
The southern part of the Peak District National Park is known as the Derbyshire Dales. This is a limestone area and as such its main rivers – the Derbyshire Wye, Derwent and Dove – are fly rich waters delivering superb fly fishing.
Trout Fly Fisheries
In Derbyshire there are some excellent still water Trout fly fisheries
Yeaveley Estate lakes (near Ashbourne)
Press Manor Trout Fishery (near Chesterfield).
Press Manor Trout Fishery
Day ticket specimen carp fishing and coarse fishing
Press Manor Trout Fishery (near Chesterfield).
Cressbrook and Litton Fishers - River Wye
Cressbrook and Litton Fly Fishers - is the custodian of eleven miles of fly fishing on the River Wye
The Peacock at Rowsley - The Peacock is the hub for the Haddon Estate fisheries which offers some of the finest and most extensive dry fly fishing in the UK.
Caves and Caverns
Due to the fascinating geological area in the Peak District, visit and learn about these truly amazing natural features. Great activity for kids and when the weather does not cooperate for outdoor activities.
If you fancy yourself as a bit of an explorer, you could also visit the adjacent Poole's Cavern, a 2 million year old, natural limestone cave
Blue John Cavern
The Blue John Cavern at Castleton in the Peak District is world famous. It is home to eight of the fourteen known varieties of Blue John stone, a beautiful and ornamental fluor-spar.
Take an amazing boat trip 450m under the Hills of Castleton to the awesome Bottomless Pit.
Otherwise known as the 'Devils Arse' this is a great cave which also doubles as a music venue.
Dolomite Training can take you beyond the usual show caves for a more exciting caving trip which can include underground abseils and climbs.
Days Out Places to Visit
Chatsworth House and Park
No visit to the Peak District would be complete without visiting the fabulous Chatsworth House. At Chatsworth there is something to do for every member of the family.
A family run theme park in Matlock Bath, this is a great family day out especially designed for families with children aged between the years of 2 and 13.
The Heights of Abraham,
Visit Matlock Bath for a beautiful day out and take the cable car ride to the Heights of Abrahams, this hill top park has plenty to see and do with cavern tours, heritage walks, a fossil factory and a children’s adventure playground.
Superb Theme Park and Water World (approximately 45 minutes’ drive away)
Buxton Pavillion and Gardens
A great day out with lots of options for all the family.
Cauldwell's Mill Rowsley
A unique grade II* listed historic roller flour mill. Offers tours of the mill, a selection of artisan workshops and gift shops as well as a cafe.
Matlock Farm Park
The farm has a varied selection of animals to see from llamas and meerkats to cattle and sheep.
Churnet Valley Railway
Superb day out for the family with a variety of activities.
Peak Wildlife Park
Come face to face with exotic and endangered animals from across three continents on this thrilling day out.
Fun day out learning about the heritage of a local brewery, for the whole family (parts of tour not suitable for children under 5)
A small village in the Peak District filled with history and beautiful surroundings such as the 'Shivering Mountain' of Mam Tor.
The potteries make for a fun and memorable day out that all ages can enjoy.
River Derwent – 4 miles from Darley Bridge to Matlock Bath.
Along with canoeing on the canal for the younger family group – min age 5yrs – maximum 12 people.
White Water Rafting,
Tandem Orca Kayaking and Tubing – Darley Dale, Matlock on the River Derwent which flows through the beautiful Peak District National Park.
Water Sports - Canoeing, Sailing and Windsurfing
Carsington Water is open all year round and is a hive for activity, you can walk or ride a bike around it, visit the watersports centre, fish or even hire the electric bikes! There is also a lovely restaurant, cafe, shops and a great playground for children. Carsington Water - Carsington Tel: 01629 540478 | Ashbourne
Tittesworth Water - Tittesworth Watersports and Activity Centre
Rudyard Lake - Near Leek
Looking for a unique experience in the Peak District. Look no further.
Smoke and Mirrors provide interactive murder mysteries at your self-catering property. You can have murder mystery dinners, murder mystery weekends, or any other sort of murder mystery you can think of!
Family portrait photographer
Some guests have hired Dorota for photo shoots for family reunions at our holiday cottages, a great away to capture a special occasion.
Butlers in the Buff
A popular choice with hen parties, this company also offers Butlerettes for stag parties
(Please note that this option can only be booked at our exclusive use venues only. Please do check with Peak Venues to whether this option is appropriate at the property you are staying at.)
Stately Homes and Parks
Set in lavish parkland, one of England’s greatest houses is home to the Duke of Devonshire and the Cavendish Family. Build by Bess of Hardwick. Mary Queen of Scots was famously imprisoned here.
A fine 17th Century Hall in the Plague village of Eyam, Hope Valley, which is still in the hands of its original builders, the Wright Family. It has a small set of craft workshops attached.
A medieval manor house and home to the Dukes of Rutland and the Manners family. Situated alongside the River Wye near Bakewell.
The remains of the hall built by the Watts Russell family in the 1820s, close to Ashbourne. The Hall and Park now belong to the National Trust.
A classical Palladian Mansion built by Robert Adam, near Derby. Home of the Curzon family and Lords Scarsdale, it is filled with memorabilia of Lord Curzon's time as Viceroy of India.
A fine Italian house in Disley, Cheshire, on the edge of the Peak District. Used by the BBC in their adaptation of Jane Austen's 'Pride and Prejudice' - this is where Mr Darcy lived. Set in a large park with gardens.
Tissington Hall is the 17th century home of the FitzHerbert family in Tissington Village near Ashbourne, Derbyshire. Wonderful furniture, paintings and porcelain collection.
This late 17th century historic country home of the Vernon family and get to know some of the amazing characters who have moulded Sudbury over the centuries.
Recommended Multi Activity Companies
Below is a full list of some of the companies that Peak Venues have worked with and have been popular with guests for Adventure Days.
Peak Outdoor Training
Specialists in Rock Climbing, Fun Navigation Events, Weasiling, Abseiling,
Demon Wheelers have a great range of experience in organising many different events which range from One to One Team building tuitions to family fun days. Loads of unusual activities can be organised both on and off site from Crystal Maze, Archery to Mini Quad biking.
Spread Like Wildfire
Themed nights and other activities. Please note some activities may not be suitable at certain properties, so please do always check with us first before booking an activity.
Offer team building events for corporate parties and outdoor activities such as Archery, Laser Clay Pigeon Shooting, Quad Bikes, Crossbows & Air Rifle Shooting.
Other Adventure Companies
Peak Venues Best Picnic Spots
9 Ladies Stone Circle
A beautiful ancient bronze age site set a short walk from Stanton in the Peak
There is plenty to keep children entertained around Padley Gorge at this favourite picnic spot.
Head down to the river and sit on the other side of the bank, enjoying the views of Chatsworth House as the rippling water adds that little something extra to your experience.
The Southern end of Dovedale, close to Illam is a top spot for a picnic. Walk up Dovedale from the car park and you will find the famous stepping stones.
Set out from the delightful village of Monyash and into Lathkill Dale, one of the most sublimely pretty parts of the Peak District.
Wild Swimming Spots
Fancy a quick dip at some of the best wild swimming spots in the Peak District.
This tiny moor top pool is steeped with legend and has great views of the Roaches.
On the young river Derwent, downstream of the foot bridge, about a mile up from the car park at the road end of the Derwent / Lady Bower Reservoir.
A graceful sweep of the river Derwent. Long river pools with fantastic Chatsworth parkland views.
Three Shires Head
A series of water falls and plunge pools (known as Panniers Pool, a reference to the pack-horses that once used the bridges) where the counties of Derbyshire, Cheshire and Staffordshire all meet at the 'Y' shaped junction of two converging rivers in the beautiful peak district.
Hathersage Open Air Swimming Pool
Its not quite wild but its an amazing outdoor swimming pool.
Food & Drink Activities
Guided Mushroom Foraging
For individuals, groups or team building – a fungi foray is always a great day out.
There are a wealth of great micro breweries in the Peak District. Some of our favourite tours are:
Chocolate Making Classes
Chocolate parties are a hands on, interactive experience, allowing children and adults to get creative and have fun with chocolate.
Hartingtons of Bakewell run many masterclasses from their converted Saw Mill.
Bakewell Pudding Making Experience
Learn how to make the perfect famous Bakewell pudding.
Wine Tasting Sessions
Or try local company Peak Wine tastings located in Hope Valley who offer a bespoke service to suit your group.
Gin Tastings & Whisky Tastings
There a number of great gin and whisky producers in the Peak District here are a few of our favourites
Cocktail Making Classes
A popular choice. Jammins Cocktail training offer cocktail making lessons in the comfort of your holiday accommodation.
There are great swimming pools in the local areas of our properties.
We also recommend one of the water parks just a stone throw away.
Take A Steam Train Ride
Take a trip on a steam train from Rowsley.
Kids Indoor Play Center
Let the kids run riot at one of the popular local kids play centers.
Individual and group sessions in ceramics and potter, with a fixed location in Whaley Bridge and a mobile Pain't a Pot service.
Great for all ages so the family can enjoy a few hours on the ice.
For the more adventurous guests we highly recommend one of the more daring outdoor pursuits available in the Peak District in climbing. With enigmatic and thought-provoking names such as Flying Buttress, Christmas Crack, Medusa, Mad Dogs & Englishmen or The Sloth along with the natural geology offering a playground for climbers, climbing is the sport to do. Here are our favourite Climbing companies who will help you tackle those cliffs and crags with ease.
Derwent Outdoor Pursuits - Tel : 01629 824179
The Peak District offers a wide array of golf courses to fill your itinerary plan and can be great for hen or stag activities to relax. Whether you're a pro putter or a casual caddy we have a range of specially selected courses for you.
Call for availability and tee times:
Matlock Golf Club
Ashbourne Golf Club
Bakewell Golf Club
Cavendish Golf Club
Buxton and High Peak Golf Club
Stickleholme Golf Club
Westwood Golf Club
Leek Golf Club
Peak Practice Golf (Buxton)
Hone your skills before taking to the course with this driving range and a wide range of other activities.
Another of our range of specially selected outdoor pursuits is horse riding which is a great way to experience the serene Peak District countryside and is great for all groups from families to hens and stag groups.
Ridgeway Riding School
Jaggers Lane, Matlock DE4 5LH
Buxton Riding Centre
Fern Farm, Fern Lane, Off London Road, Buxton, Derbyshire, SK17 9NP
Beaver Hall Equestrian Centre
Beaver Hall Equestrian Centre, Bradnop, Near Leek, Staffordshire, ST13 7EZ
Northfield Farm Riding
Northfield Farm, Flash, Near Buxton, Derbyshire. SK17 0SW
Horse Racing - Uttoxeter Race Course
Arts & Crafts
To burn off that holiday excitement energy try our great team building activity of dancing or relax and enjoy painting, drawing or sculpting.
Eleanor Gaywood - Belly Dancing Lessons
Peak Performance Theatre School
Bakewell Dance - Offer a range of dance styles including a hen dance event.
Crafternoon Tea - A bespoke, vintage and relaxed way to enjoy crafts, tea and cake! A tailored experience that can be enjoyed from the comfort of your holiday cottage!
The Crafty Hen - Offers fun craft workshops led by experienced professionals are great and go wherever you want your party.
Crafts and Giggles - Offer craft parties for corporate groups, hen parties, birthdays and more!
Spa & Pamper Days
Pamper Days / Parties:
Offer treatment packages for couples, groups and families in the comfort of your accommodation from £19pp.
As You Like It Pamper Parties - Tel : 07787 123847
Love Pamper Company - relax in the comfort of your booked accommodation and let the pampering begin - can cater for all size groups with many different treatments to consider. Tel: 07896 508748
The New Bath Hotel and Spa - Offers a wide variety of treatment packages.
The Palace Hotel - Buxton has an indoor swimming pool, sauna, steam room and 7 beauty treatment rooms.
The Retreat - Leek offers a wide array of treatments and spa packages.
Loosehill Spa - Near Hope offers treatments to suit everybody.
Pilates & Yoga
Looking for Pilates Instruction in the Peak District. Contact Peak District Pilates for more information.
For Yoga instruction contact Peak District Yoga