One of our favourite Instagrammers, Alice of @derbyshire_living
has compiled a list of the best places to explore in the Peak District. If you are planning a weekend away, or are simply looking to find a new and charming area with plenty to see and do, make sure that you visit Aliceís must-sees:
The Peak District holds some of England's best kept secrets, something that despite living here all my life, I only really discovered a few years ago when I decided to take up walking as a new hobby. I used to spend hours scrolling though countless backpacker's Instagram feeds, dreaming of travelling to amazing places far across the globe when the truth was, I never realised what beautiful places were already on my doorstep. Why be in such a rush to leave and travel the world before you've even explored your own home? There were endless feeds of people documenting exotic, beautiful foreign countries but I could never find a page dedicated to the beautiful place where I live, which is why I created 'Derbyshire_Living'. This is a place where I document my weekend adventures and hopefully, encourage others to get out the house and explore the beautiful county that we live in.
One of my favourite places and somewhere that I always find myself at least once a month is Stanage Edge, a 4 mile gritstone cliff located just north of the village of Hathersage. Stanage edge is a climbers' heaven, and is always packed with walkers and people pretending to be Keira Knightley in Pride and Prejudice, gazing out for miles over the breathtaking views (this location was featured in the 2005 remake). Stanage is quite simply breathtaking. Our usual walk amongst the purple moorland and rocky terrain is a circular route from Hollin Bank Car Park, up and along towards Burbage rocks and back again. Be sure to visit Colemans Deli in Hathersage when your finished too, this place makes the most delicious, fresh food...think thick cut bread loaded with the most fresh and delicious salads, meats and sauces. It is without a doubt my favourite place for lunch in the Peak District - just thinking of their goats cheese salad is making me want to grab my coat and run there right now!
Next on my list and located in the heart of the Peak District is the beautiful village of Castleton. A pretty little place bustling with tiny shops, traditional English pubs, cafes and best of all, surrounded by lots of interesting walking routes. It would be a crime to visit here and not walk up Winnats Pass - this place reminds me of something straight out of a fantasy novel. Think towering green cliffs and a long winding road snaking right down the middle. I love scrambling to the top of here to sit and watch the world go by, it's the perfect sunset spot over Castleton too! Also be sure not to leave Castleton without a walk up Mam Tor. It only takes 10 minutes to get to the top if you park at Mam Nick car park. I just love walking to the top of here when I don't have enough time in the day to go on a full blown hike, it's the perfect way to get a healthy dose of fresh, clean air. To one side you can see over the Edale Valley to Kinder Scout, and the other over to Castleton, surrounded by rolling, lush green hills.
I've saved the best until last: Kinder Scout. This walk isn't for the faint hearted, and hiking experience is required if you want to trek up to the highest point of the Peak District! You'll have sore legs at the end of the day walking up here, but the phenomenal views make every ache and pain worth it. Thereís no easy way to scale Kinder but our chosen route starts from Edale station, up through the village, up to Grindsbrook along the tops and back down to Jacobs Ladder. This is a good 4 hour walk so a picnic is essential! In Grindsbrook, you will have to heave yourself up very rocky terrain and slippery streams but the view at the top of here is breathtaking. I feel like I'm on the top of the world up here!
I could sit and write all day about our weekend adventures in the Peak District. Unmissable places also include Curbar Edge (a favourite sunset spot of mine), Lady Bower Reservoir (also a great cycling route here), Win Hill, Padley Gorge (this looks like an enchanted fairytale forest), Monsal Head, Dovedale, Kinder Reservoir and the list goes on! The more we go walking, the more I fall in love with being outdoors and the more of our favourite memories are made! I am truly at my happiest in my old worn hiking boots with nothing but green rolling hills and a day of exploring in front of me. I'm always counting down the days at work waiting for Saturday to roll around so we can get outside and go exploring. I canít urge you enough to visit one of these places. Pull on your coat, pack a picnic and get to exploring the beautiful Peak District - itís surprisingly fun to be a tourist in your own home!
Follow Alice on Instagram at @derbyshire_living
for more picturesque inspiration.