6 places to experience the sunrise in the Peak District

PUBLISHED: 16:40 10 August 2020 | UPDATED: 16:40 10 August 2020

Sunrise over Surprise View, Owler Tor by Dan Mears, Peak by Dan Mears

Sunrise over Surprise View, Owler Tor by Dan Mears, Peak by Dan Mears


It might mean an early start, but being in the Peak District for the break of dawn is well worth the effort.

Sunrise over Higger Tor by Dan Mears, Peak by Dan MearsSunrise over Higger Tor by Dan Mears, Peak by Dan Mears

Higger Tor

Surprise View, reputedly named when Queen Victoria came this way in a carriage from Sheffield and is said to have commented on the view: ‘Oh my, what a surprise!’.

You can walk across the road from the car park on the A6187 to Over Owler Tor, which is where Dan Mears took this photo of the sunrise. You can see more of his photos at peakbydanmears.co.uk

Just a few miles up the road is Higger Tor, here you can enjoy views of the Burbage Valley. It’s less than a mile to the vantage point from the car park.

Higger Tor by Dan Mears (c) Peak by Dan MearHigger Tor by Dan Mears (c) Peak by Dan Mear

Mam Tor

Mam Tor is probably the most popular place to view the sunrise in the Peak District, the views from the summit overlook the Hope Valley and it is spectacular site under any circumstances.

Sarah Gibbs took a sunrise walk from Mam Tor to Losehill along the Mar Tor bridleway. From point to point, it’s exactly two miles between these two landmarks.

If you’re only looking to experience the sunrise, then the summit is a little over half a mile trek from the car park on the A623.

Sunrise on Mam Tor by Sarah GibbsSunrise on Mam Tor by Sarah Gibbs

Winnats Pass

Not far from Mam Tor is Winnats Pass, a hill pass and limestone gorge just a mile outside the popular village of Castleton.

The view over Winnats Pass is one of the most iconic sights in the Peak District, Rick Platfoot took this shot looking over Hope and Castleton.

You can walk on Arthurs Way from Castleton until it becomes Winnats Pass, but there is also a car park entrance to Speedwell Cavern at the foot of the pass.

Winnats Pass by Rick PlatfootWinnats Pass by Rick Platfoot

Win Hill

However, you decide to venture to the top of Win Hill, if you want to experience the sunrise, it’s going to mean an early start.

Jo Briggs took in the sunrise from Win Hill one July morning. Starting from Ladybower, up Parkin Clough onto Win Hill for dawn, then along the Roman road to Alport Castles towards Crook Hill then back to Ladybower.

Parking is available on the roadside near the bridge, down the steep road close to the Yorkshire Bridge pub.

Sunrise on Win Hill by Jo BriggsSunrise on Win Hill by Jo Briggs

Derwent Edge

Nia J Davies saw in the sunrise in the Upper Derwent Valley.

Starting at Ladybower, she took in Crook Hill, Bridge-end Pasture, Derwent Dam, Lost Lad, Back Tor, Derwent Edge and back down to Ladybower Reservoir.

If you’re heading directly from Ladybower to Derwent Edge, it’s more than an hour walk, passing by the Ladybower Inn and the Coach and Horses Rock Formation.

Winnats Pass by Rick PlatfootWinnats Pass by Rick Platfoot

Fairbrook Naze

Kinder Scout is the highest point in the Peak District and it is natural to wonder if you can see in the day from here. A better option would be to experience the sunrise elsewhere before tackling the 2,000 summit.

Jono Steel took a early walk onto Kinder Scout up Fairbrook Clough on a brisk September morning to catch the sunrise at Fairbrook Naze.

If you want a simpler way to get to Fairbrook Naze directly, it’s just over half a mile from the Hope Woodland Carpark on the Snake Pass.

Fairbrook Naze by Jono SteelFairbrook Naze by Jono Steel

All these images were posted to our Derbyshire and Peak District Walks facebook group.

Join our community to share your walk photos or to find inspiration for your next adventure.

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