From quiet country rambles to sweat inducing hikes, there are circular walking trails to suit all abilities here in the Peak District. And with more people seeking out their leisure opportunities in the region, we’ve listed our five favourite circular walks which offer up the best circular walks Peak District and circular walks Derbyshire.
Mam Tor circular walk
Time: 1.5-2 hours
A route that’s great for almost any level of hiker and still takes in all of the best bits of Mam Tor.
One of the best short circular walks in the Peak District.
Start at the Mam Nick car park and head towards the far end. The track is easy to see and also well signposted. The ascent to the top is steep but steady and you’ll be rewarded with far reaching views of the Vale of Edale, Peveril Castle and The Hope Valley. On your round trip back to the car park, you will also see the ‘broken road’, which is a very broken road that was abandoned due to landslides in the 70’s, and the Blye John Caverns which are one of the most impressive series of limestone caverns in Western Europe.
Dovedale circular walk
Time: 4-5 hours
This 10-mile circular route is a firm favourite among the locals and takes you up to the summit of Thorpe Cloud which offers stunning views down to Dovetail. From here the route is downhill and will take you onto the River Dove and the famous Dovedale stepping stones – on busy days be prepared to queue for the chance to hop across them! There are also lovely viewpoints at Reynard’s Cave, Dovedale Hole and the Bridge at Milldale. If a 10-mile walk sounds like too much hard work, there is a shorter route from the Dovetail car park which will take you on a much more condensed version and you’ll still get the chance for a stepping stones photo opportunity.
Stanage Edge circular walk
Time: 1.5-2 hours
Parking is free at the Long Causeway car park. The walk offers up superb views of Derwent and Ladybower Reservoir, and there’s an abundance of flora and fauna to discover along the way. You will also pass North Lee’s Hall on-route which is a pretty Elizabethan House with some pretty architectural features. Handily the return route takes you through Hathersage village which has a few eateries and cafes for you to rest and refuel.
Bakewell circular walk
Time: 2-3 hours
This lovely circular route will take you along the banks of the River Wye. You’ll start in the market town of Bakewell, the trail then heads up through pastureland into the scenic village of Ashford-in-the-Water, which is conveniently also your half waypoint. There are plenty of places to grab a bite to eat here should you feel like a pit stop. You’ll find traditional and hearty pub grub at The Bulls Head or if you feel like a lighter bite, the Aisseford Tea Room is where you should head.
Birchen Edge to Chatsworth circular walk
Time: 2-3 hours
A seven-mile circular route that takes in some real gems of the Peak District countryside, including some lovely views of the Chatsworth House estate. There are plenty of spots to stop for a picnic along the way and enjoy the glorious views. Notable things to take in on-route are Nelson’s Monument and the Three Ships rock formations. You will also head up into the forest surrounding the Chatsworth Estate, and walk past The Hunting Tower which just happens to be part of the Devonshire Bolthole collection should you fancy extending your stay.
If you feel like making a stay of it, we have a wonderful selection of Derbyshire based Boltholes and Inns to make it a break to remember, search our collection here.