6 ISSUES FOR £6 Subscribe to Derbyshire Life today click here

10 top picnic spots in Derbyshire and the Peak District

PUBLISHED: 12:55 15 June 2015 | UPDATED: 21:02 15 May 2016

Chatsworth Cascade and House  Photo: Chatsworth House Trust

Chatsworth Cascade and House Photo: Chatsworth House Trust

Archant

Seek out these local beauty spots for an al fresco feast to remember

Padley Gorge
Scrambling over ancient rocks and paddling in the pleasant stream, there’s plenty to keep children entertained around Padley Gorge as Burbage Brook begins its journey downstream. Spread out the rug under a tree and you’ll be set up for the day. It can get very crowded on sunny summer days, so I’d always opt for heading out for a late picnic when it’s not one of the hottest times. If the picnic didn’t fill you completely, there are usually one or two ice cream vans within a short walk. It’s actually a lot like a day out at the beach!

Chatsworth
A truly wonderful day out, no matter how old the members of your party are. Combine your picnic with a trip around the house, or if you have children they will love the farmyard and adventure playground. When it’s time to unleash your picnic, head down to the river and sit on the other side of the bank, enjoying the views of Chatsworth House as the rippling water adds that little something extra to your experience. There are toilet facilities not far away and plenty of nice routes around the grounds to walk off the Scotch eggs and sausage rolls.

Carsington Water
Take your bikes and a backpack full of treats to Carsington Water, a man-made attraction, but beautiful nonetheless. An ideal location for a family day out, there are toilet facilities in the visitor centre, but the real joy is out there on the bike routes that are on the level and for the whole family to enjoy. There are many places to sit down and enjoy your picnic, most of which will have great, peaceful views over Carsington Water. Keep an eye out for the wildlife as well; there are some rare birds that occupy these parts.

Slippery Stones
From the car park at Fairholmes, it’s a ten mile round walk or cycle ride around Derwent and Howden Reservoirs. The halfway point is known as Slippery Stones, an idyllic place away from traffic and where your only disturbance is likely to be the hum of an aeroplane or the waddling of a duck. Sit back on the grass bank next to the stream and enjoy the sight of the historic stone bridge and wonderful Peak District hills. It’s the perfect place for a sunny day and if you go midweek it’s quite possible you’ll be on your own up there. Make sure you eat enough to give you energy for the return journey to Fairholmes!

Dovedale
The southern end of Dovedale, close to Ilam, is another top spot for a great picnic. Walk up Dovedale from the car park and you’ll get to the famous stepping stones placed there in Victorian days and recently replaced due to flood damage. There are plenty of places to spread out by the river and a few benches as well if the ground is too wet. Limestone hills tower above you here; Dovedale was once part of a tropical sea and the rocks were formed over time as dead sea creatures sank to the bottom of the ocean. Their fossils are all around you.

Lathkill Dale
Set out from the delightful village of Monyash and walk into Lathkill Dale, one of the most sublimely pretty parts of the Peak District. There’s plenty of space to spread out in this valley hemmed in by incredible limestone features. And, of course, the village has a store and a pub in case you run out of crisps, pop, dips and any other picnic essentials. Your trip here should be part of an action packed day – there is a great park in Monyash and the biking potential on the nearby Tissington Trail is enormous!

Monsal Head
Natural beauty meets industrial heritage at Monsal Head, where the old train line passes through tunnels built in the Victorian Age and out into the limestone-specked Monsal Dale. Today the disused train line is used for walking and cycling as the Monsal Trail and it’s well worth working up an appetite by taking a stroll – either way from Monsal Head along the trail leads to a tunnel and great views. But for the best place to enjoy your picnic, walk down to the riverside, where there are large fields; here you can choose your spot with the old, historic railway viaduct towering overhead.

Linacre Woods
Within easy reach of Chesterfield, there are simple walks to enjoy by the majestic trees and around the reservoirs at Linacre Woods. You’ll find the signage straightforward to use and the lengths are of varying size, so there’s something for everyone. Popular with dog walkers and families, there are some lovely settings at Linacre Woods for you to host your al fresco treat. Although it’s not far away from the town, you get a real feeling of being in the middle of nowhere and you can forget about time when you’re in Linacre Woods.

Langsett
An ample car park and toilet facilities add to the appeal of a walk in the woods around Langsett. But you can rest assured that the scenery is something special as well, with huge trees towering all around the reservoir. It makes for a lovely circular walk and there’s plenty of wildlife to spot on the way. Spread out your rug in the middle of the trees and enjoy lying down and gazing up at the canopy above you. Just make sure you don’t get any pine cones under the rug. That can be very uncomfortable.

Tissington
A delightful village with an old hall, cottages and even a village green with duck pond, Tissington is as much a picture-postcard country village as you’re likely to get. Spending a day in Tissington is like stepping back in time, back to the days of Downton Abbey. Choose from any number of idyllic locations to open up your ginger beer, and while away the time people watching and imagining what it would have been like back in the day. Tissington, of course, lends its name to the Tissington Trail, so when you’ve filled up on cucumber sandwiches you can work it off by biking to Ashbourne and back. Or pop to the tearooms for a cake.

Related articles

0 comments

Welcome , please leave your message below.

Optional - JPG files only
Optional - MP3 files only
Optional - 3GP, AVI, MOV, MPG or WMV files
Comments

Please log in to leave a comment and share your views with other Derbyshire Life and Countryside visitors.

We enable people to post comments with the aim of encouraging open debate.

Only people who register and sign up to our terms and conditions can post comments. These terms and conditions explain our house rules and legal guidelines.

Comments are not edited by Derbyshire Life and Countryside staff prior to publication but may be automatically filtered.

If you have a complaint about a comment please contact us by clicking on the Report This Comment button next to the comment.

Not a member yet?

Register to create your own unique Derbyshire Life and Countryside account for free.

Signing up is free, quick and easy and offers you the chance to add comments, personalise the site with local information picked just for you, and more.

Sign up now

More from Out & About

Looking for somewhere new to explore this weekend? Why not follow Mike Smith to the unspoiled villages of the Dane Valley.

Read more
Peak District

Peak District walk - Miller’s Dale

Wednesday, June 13, 2018

Enjoy plenty of spectacular Derbyshire dales and panoramic Peak District landscape in this wonderful scenic walk

Read more

Once a town of ‘pits and pots’ Swadlincote is moving forward with a revitalised town centre and the green glory of the National Forest.

Read more

Peter Seddon drinks in details of the county’s watery past at Youlgrave’s fountain.

Read more

Geoff Ford meets Alex Warzynski, Chairman of the British Sub Aqua Club at his home in Wirksworth

Read more

Paul Hobson extols the virtues of a fine month to discover ‘splendour in the grass, glory in the flower’

(courtesy of William Wordsworth)

Read more

6 walks near Hathersage

Wednesday, May 23, 2018

For may people, Hathersage is the gateway to the Peak District. This selection of walks are all within a five mile radius of the popular village which is just ten miles south of Sheffield.

Read more

The designer of the Best Show Garden at last year’s inaugural RHS Chatsworth Flower Show, Paul Hervey-Brookes, takes us behind the scenes with a look at his garden for this year’s show.

Read more

How has the town fared since winning Best Market Town and High Street awards in 2014? Ashley Franklin talks to the people behind its success

Read more

Mike Smith journeys to Holmesfield, an ancient manor on the hills south-west of Sheffield

Read more

75 years ago Derbyshire became a practice site for World War Two’s most daring flying raid. Viv Micklefield travels to the Upper Derwent Valley, for many the spiritual home of the legendary Dambusters

Read more

Without the hindrance of stiles or gates, this leisurely ramble is quite simply a walk in the park!

Read more

The South-Derbyshire village of Kings Newton is one of the county’s most charming small settlements. Nestled alongside its larger neighbour Melbourne, protected from mainstream traffic, it commands the epithet ‘backwater’ in the most positive sense – a quaint and peaceful haven replete with fine architecture and a timeless air rendering it almost a ‘best-kept secret’.

Read more

Better weather, badgers and bluebells combine to make this Paul Hobson’s favourite month of the year

Read more
 
Great British Holidays advert link

Newsletter Sign Up

Sign up to the following newsletters:

Sign up to receive our regular email newsletter

Our Privacy Policy


Subscribe or buy a mag today


Local Business Directory

Derbyshire's trusted business finder

Job search in your local area




Property Search