The Peak District is famous for its spectacular scenery and array of outdoor activities but it also lays claim to some of the most picturesque towns and villages in the UK.
So grab your camera and follow our guide to the prettiest Peak District’s towns and villages.
Ashbourne, sometimes referred to as the “gateway” to Dovedale, is the closest town to Dovedale and also our Peak District holiday park.
There are over 200 listed buildings here, dating back to Tudor and Georgian times, waiting to be discovered along the winding cobbled streets. Check out the ‘longest inn sign in the world’ at The Greenman pub on St John Street and if you are seeking divine inspiration then head to the beautiful St Oswald’s Parish Church with its striking 212 feet high spire, described by classic author George Eliot as the ‘finest single spire in England’.
Walkers, cyclists and horse riders will appreciate the fact that Ashbourne also sits at the start of the traffic-free Tissington Trail – a green gateway to Dovedale and the Pennine Bridleway, linking up further north with the popular High Peak Trail. This trail passes right next to Ashbourne Heights, which offers caravan holidays in the Peak District.
Browsing the charming streets of #Ashbourne 😍
With its cobbled streets, picturesque Market Place and handsome Tudor and Georgian heritage, this picturesque market town is known as ‘The Gateway to Dovedale’ https://t.co/PVLd556QWr 🏡🍃 pic.twitter.com/LYgcP29l7o
— Visit Peak District & Derbyshire (@vpdd) October 17, 2019
Things to do in the Peak District must involve heading to the centre of this area and discovering perhaps two of the most famous names in the area – Bakewell and Ashford-in-the-Water.
Ashford-in-the-Water is a small, picturesque village on the River Wye. There are lovely old stone houses, a beautiful 13th-century church and arguably the most photographed bridge in Britain – the charming packhorse Sheepwash Bridge where sheep were dipped prior to shearing. Sheepwash Bridge has also been named as the best location in the country to play the much-loved game of ‘Poohsticks’!
Said by many to be the heart of the Peak District, Bakewell looks as though it has just stepped off the front of a chocolate box. This little town on the River Wye bustles with life – and plenty of visitors – who enjoy the lovely riverside walks, heritage and history.
Things to do in the Peak District involve trying the famous Bakewell Pudding so you’ll be pleased to learn that there are cafes and bakeries bursting with this speciality! Claims to fame also include the fact that Jane Austen stayed at the Rutland Arms Hotel and immortalised the town as Lambton in Pride and Prejudice
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If you’re a Jane Austen fan, then a great thing to do in the Peak District is to visit Chatsworth. Chatsworth was allegedly the inspiration for Jane Austin’s ‘Pemberley’ in her novel Pride and Prejudice and since the 2005 film was made there, it will always be easily recognisable as Darcy’s famous estate.
Another village renowned for its literary associations and legends is Hathersage. Once local landowners, the Eyre family were immortalised by Charlotte Brontë, who visited the village. The churchyard also reputedly holds the grave of Little John, of Robin Hood fame.
Next to the cycling and walking route, The Tissington Trail, is an idyllic unspoilt estate village surrounding Tissington Hall. Described as being ‘as near perfection as you can get’, in recent years its picture-perfect looks have been enhanced by a range of interesting businesses on which to call. These include the Hall’s popular Herbert’s Tearooms, an amazing vintage sweet and antique emporium, and On A Wick and A Prayer candle shop.
Ashbourne Heights is a stunning holiday park located on the southern edge of the Peak District, perfect for exploring this beautiful part of the UK. The holiday park offers a range of self-catering accommodation, including luxury lodges and caravans and it’s also a great place to try glamping in the Peak District, with its top quality Safari Tents.