The Top Hikes In and Around the Peak District
The Peak District National Park is one of the most naturally beautiful places in the United Kingdom. If you are planning a visit to England’s oldest national park then arguably the best ways to witness it is on foot. Here at The George we are lucky to be situated close to Peak District hiking trails that will bring you up-close to underground caves, gritstone escarpments, rolling hills and sprawling moorland. So strap on a pair of comfortable walking shoes and enjoy the jaw-dropping scenery by following our guide to the best Peak District hikes.
Mam Tor Walk
A hike to the summit of the 1,696-feet (517-meter) tall Mam Tor (aka Shivering Mountain) is one of the most popular Peak District walks. It’s a steep but short route up the hill and you’ll meet hikers of all ages and fitness levels, including families and dog walkers. Views from the top are the standout highlight and reach over the lush green landscapes of Edale Valley to Kinder Scout peak. On your descent you can stop for tours of the Castleton Caves, namely Blue John Cavern, Speedwell Cavern and Treak Cliff Cavern.
If you want an easy walk but still one with exceptional views then check out the Monsal Trail. This paved route connects Bakewell with Buxton via a section of a 19th-century railway line. It’s accessible to everyone from cyclists and horse riders to walkers and families with strollers. You’ll have great fun passing through tunnels and gazing over the unblemished countryside of Monsal Dale from viaducts. Bring a packed lunch, including some signature Bakewell pudding, to eat at the picnic area and playground at Hassop Station.
Padley Gorge Walk
Beginning at the National Trust-owned Longshaw House, this moderate circular walk follows the course of a brook that meanders through the intimate setting of Padley Gorge. Take time to admire the gorge’s alder, beech and oak trees and to spot flycatchers and woodpeckers. The trail comes out of the gorge at the village of Grindleford and then starts its return via Yarncliffe Wood. Plan your visit in May and be charmed by the dazzling carpet of bluebells that decorates the wood.
Stanage Edge Walk
This 9-mile (15-kilometre) long trail connects the village of Hathersage with the imposing gritstone escarpment called Stanage Edge. From the windswept summit are views of the Hope Valley, Mam Tor and distant Kinder Scout. Besides being naturally magnificent, the walk is steeped in folkloric and literary history. You’ll pass North Lees Hall, which was an inspiration for Thornfield Manor in Charlotte Bronte’s Jane Eyre. Look for the grave of Robin Hood’s companion Little John at St Michael and All Angels' Church.
The Limestone Way
With time on your side you can embark on a 46-mile (74-kilometre) adventure from Castleton to Rocester. This waymarked route travels through the magnificent White Peak limestone plateau of the park. Ramblers can expect to pass dramatic dales framed by undulating green hills and dotted with pretty villages. Delight in the majesty of Cave Dale, which affords a bird’s-eye view of Peveril Castle, and see landmarks such as Robin’s Hood Stride rock formation. You’ll want to plan 3-4 days to hike the entire length of this trail.