Caving in the Peak District

Peak District Show Caves, Caverns and Caving

There are many caverns, show caves and caving experiences to explore in the Peak District. The most famous show caves are located in Castleton but with other equally intriguing and often overlooked caves dotted about the Peak District, there is something for everyone.

The Castleton Caves

Blue John Cavern in Castleton is world-famous, home to eight of the fourteen known varieties of ‘Blue John stone’ beautiful and ornamental fluorspar.

A great day out for all the family is a boat trip under the hills of ‘Castleton’ to the bottomless pit of Speedwell Cavern. Set at the foot of the incredible Winnats Pass, you descend the 106 steps from the almost hidden cave entrance to the landing stage of an underground canal, where you step onto your tour guide's boat and discover the incredible workings of a 200-year-old lead mine.

Peak Cavern is otherwise known as the 'Devils Arse' this is a great cave deep in the gorge below ‘Pevril Castle’ is Peak Caverns' imposing entrance chamber – the largest natural cave entrance in the British Isles. This cavern also doubles as a music venue, home to one-off events and regular concerts throughout the summer months. If you’re lucky enough to stay in the peaks during the Christmas period then you definitely want to make sure you attend one of the festive underground singalongs and Carol concerts.

Treak Cliff Cavern At Treak Cliff you will find a truly unique experience, you can go prospecting for your own piece of Blue John stone in the mines at Treak Cliff Cavern. Once you have found your piece, the team of expert craftspeople will guide you through polishing your selection and you’ll also be able to choose additional pieces from the workshop to make into a window hanger and a piece of silver-mounted jewellery. When your finish head to the Cafe on the Cliff to take in the views from Treak Cliff, grab a coffee or try Treak Cliff's own locally brewed IPA.

Buxton and Matlock Show Caves

Poole's cavern 

Located in Buxton, is home to this 2 million-year-old natural limestone cave, one of the finest show caves in the UK. Journey through the magnificent underground passages, rich in stalactite and stalagmite formations, legend and history. Guided tours are available and there is a great cafe on site too.

The Great Masson and Great Rutland Caverns

In Matlock, you will find 2 fantastic show caves and the  Heights of Abraham. Located at the Summit behind the Masson Pavilion. A guided trip deep into the hillside takes you to the Masson Cavern. Learn about the 350 million-year story that led to the cavern being what it is today. Rutland cave is located next to the Tavern on the lower slopes of the hillside. Journey back in time to experience what life was like for a 17th Century lead mining family. Learn about the role of women and children within the mines and how they took on the most dangerous work. Hear the stories from the past of mass excursions, cave chandeliers and extraordinary light shows.

Have a Go at Caving

Caving is a great activity at any time of the year with its amazing rock formations, rare stones and amazing atmospheres they are sure to be a day out that everyone enjoys and for a fun fact, during the winter months it is warmer to be in a cave than outside!! It’s a fairly constant temperature between 7 - 9 degrees C.

If you’re up for more of a ‘Thrill-seeking adventure’ and to go beyond the usual show caves for a more exciting caving trip then Dolomite Training based in Bakewell has courses for everyone as well bespoke activity days to cater for groups regardless of your requirements and level of experience.

Accclimbatize is another fantastic local adventure and training provider and they offer a variety of caving, potholing and mining exploration courses.