Peak District National Park - Activities


There is a great tradition of public access and outdoor recreation in the Peak District, which has remained a valuable leisure resource since forming a natural hinterland and rural escape for the populations of industrial Sheffield and Manchester.

The 2,900km (1,800 mile) network of public footpaths and long-distance trails, plus the many large open-access areas, are enjoyed by hillwalkers and hikers, while bridleways are popular among mountain bikers as well as horse riders.

The many gritstone and limestone outcrops offer some of the world's finest rock climbing sites. These include Froggatt Edge, Stanage Edge and The Roaches, which were the first to be climbed.

Below the ground, potholers enjoy the abundant natural caves, potholes and old mine workings carved out of the limestone. Peak Cavern is the biggest and most significant cave system, while others can be found at Castleton, Winnats, Matlock, Stoney Middleton, Eyam, Monyash and Buxton. Many of the numerous old mine workings are extensions of natural cave systems. The only substantial potholes are Eldon Hole and Nettle Pot.

Being the most landlocked part of the UK, the area's large reservoirs provide a welcome opportunity for watersports like sailing, fishing and canoeing. Other popular activities include air sports such as hang gliding and paragliding, as well as birdwatching, fell running, off-roading, and orienteering.

There are also numerous historic buildings, picturesque villages and museums to be seen.