The easiest and recommended way to travel to the Peak District is by car. The Peak District National Park is located East of Manchester, North of Birmingham and London, and West of Sheffield. If you are coming from further locations, travel to one of these larger cities and then rent a car to visit the Peak District.
In order to travel around the National Park, you will need a car to access different hiking trails, towns, restaurants or food stores. There are some buses running through the park and train travel to a few of the towns, but without a car, it will be very difficult to get around and see different areas of the park.
When visiting the Peak District, it is likely you will be traveling to different areas of the national park for hikes. Try to find accommodations in the middle of the park, near the towns of Hathersage, Hope or Castleton.
Alternatively, look a bit further south in Bakewell, but expect to have slightly longer drives to areas across the park. If your trip will be longer than a few nights, stay in two different areas to reduce time spent traveling to and from trailheads across the park.
Since many of the towns are quite small, consider looking into short term stay options like Airbnb. This is especially helpful as it provides flexibility to prepare your own meals rather than going out to eat as there is a limited restaurant and pub selection.
On a clear day, there are continuous panoramic views from the Mam Tor ridge walk. Consider taking the path from the car park up and along the ridge all the way to Castleton as this takes you over Lose Hill as well. The distance from the car park to Castleton is about 4.25 miles.
Grab a bite to eat in Castleton and either return the way you came retracing your steps on Lose Hill and Mam Tor, or follow the street up through Winnats Pass. Do not bother going out and behind Castleton after viewing Mam Tor.
The walk along Stanage Edge is about 8.6 miles out and back. Although not strenuous, the path provides views over the Derwent Valley. Be sure to visit on a sunny day. If there is cloud coverage, you may get to the trailhead and realize you can hardly find the trail as it is hidden in the clouds.
8.7 mile loop near the town of Hope with around 2000 ft elevation gain. The loop first takes you uphill for a view over the surrounding area and then takes you back down where the path continues along the reservoir. Rated as moderate, the path is suitable for those willing to walk long distances. Keep in mind, parts of the path will be very muddy if you visit after it rains.
A rocky ridge located in the SW area of the Peak District. The ridge is a steep incline up with many walks providing views over the surrounding area.
A series of stone steps, which guide hikers up to Kinder Scout
Another commonly hiked path, Kinder Scout is home to the highest point in the Peak District and provides another nice spot to hike.
Small market town located along the river Wye with the entire town having a medieval feel.
Classic, quintessentially English town with cobblestone roads and stone buildings. This cute town provides a good spot to stop for a coffee or meal when traveling around the Peak District.
Natural, large cave found in Manifold Valley
Rocks aligned like stepping stones over the River Dove in the Dovedale Valley
Mountain pass found in Hope Vally in the center of the Peak District. Accessible by car or on foot, Winnats Pass has a steep incline but is known for unique views from within and panoramic views from above.
A trail commonly used by bikers that runs along the old Midland Railway
Small pub located near Bamford Edge with delicious food. The restaurant is small and may not look like much, but has an excellent roast beef sandwich and pulled pork sandwich. It provides a great place for an afternoon meal when exploring the Peak District.
Tea room in the town of Castleton with a variety of options
The Peak District is a good destination for a quick weekend trip for those looking for an easy spot to enjoy the outdoors. The walks are nice and the towns are cute, but only need a few days to visit. It is not somewhere worth traveling very far to visit, but a decent option for locals living in the UK.
It often rains in the Peak District so plan accordingly. The weather may change quickly, wherein the morning it is a beautiful sunny day and in the afternoon it is downpouring while you are out for a hike. Be sure to pack clothes for various weather conditions, and specifically good hiking boots. If you are lucky and get sunshine, the ground may still be wet and muddy from the last rain shower.
Transportation and Accommodations
Things to do and see
Food and Drinks