Places to Visit in Derbyshire in Autumn

16th August 2022
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Autumn is the season of colour, and nothing fills the soul with cosy warmth and nostalgic feelings better than an autumnal day. Don your walking boots and wrap up warm, head outside into the cool air, experience vibrant views, golden hues and woodlands dusted with the bright oranges and reds of crunchy leaves. It is the perfect time of year to book a cosy countryside break, enjoy cooler nights watching the stars around a roaring fire, or just simply sit all cosied up with a steaming drink in hand reading a book or watching the world go by.

Whether this is inspiration for when you are passing by, or are searching for help with planning how to spend an Autumn stay in Derbyshire, or are maybe even considering a trip. Read on to find out about our most recommended spots.

Chatsworth Estate

Visiting Chatsworth House and its phenomenal garden is always a must see whilst in Derbyshire, and stepping into autumn at Chatsworth is something all can thoroughly enjoy. As the garden changes its colours, it brings with it a a new light of discovery, new flora and fauna emerge ready to brace the cool breeze, the Chatsworth Park deer are out and exploring for themselves and the 16th Century home welcomes all to enjoy its warmth of splendour and heritage and discover the history that lies within its walls.

There are also lots of exciting events to get you in the Autumnal spirit as well!

Every year, Chatsworth put on an evening display of incredible fireworks and a blazing bonfire. Accompanied by a range of entertainment, a selection of delicious food and sweet treats, and of course the ultimate outdoor warmers, mulled wine and mulled cider. The perfect autumnal treat to enjoy with friends and family wrapped up warm. This year it will take place on the 28th and 29th October.

This summer, Chatsworth have also displayed eight of the Burning Man exhibition sculptures throughout Chatsworth Park, all the way from the Black Rock Desert, Nevada USA. Burning Man is a distinctive culture of free creativity and collaboration, its an event that sees team gathering and working together to create spectacular artworks. Chatsworth have replicated this with the help of local communities and schools, coming together to create three new sculptures. This Autumn, 1st October, Chatsworth will be hosting a special one-off event celebrating and brining the exhibition to a close, as is the tradition of the Burning Man event, one of the sculptures created will be set alight, they will also be illuminating the remaining sculptures brining them into a new light. As well, there will be a host of entertainment, from live music, to circus acts and fire performers, including delicious food and refreshing drinks. Plus, a very special performance from DRIFT an aerial drone act who have produced performances from around the world, including NASA's 50th celebration of the moon landings, as well as Burning Man in the USA.

Explore the Autumn Colours - Autumn Walks

Lumsdale Falls

Hidden on the outskirts of Matlock, there are few obvious signposts so many visitors to the area pass without ever knowing what magic is hidden within the trees. Lumsdale Valley was once a hive of activity, bustling watermills powered by the ever-flowing water of Bentley Brook, now left to ruin. Nature has engulfed the remaining building and, you could say, taken back the valley. Waterfalls, pools and streams run through the ruins and alongside the valley now creating a truly magical place, made even more magical with the bright golds and coppers of crunchy leaves underfoot and those waiting to fall dancing in the cool wind, a truly magical Autumn walk.

Dovedale Circular

A firm local favourite that takes you to the summit of Thorpe Cloud, which offers stunning views down to Dovetail. It is a 10 mile walk full of wonderful viewpoints where you can see for miles around, you will also discover interesting places along the way such as Reynard's Cave, Dovedale Hole and the Bridge of Milldale. There is also a great opportunity to be able to to take on the famous Dovedale stepping stones, but be careful the water will be chilly in Autumn! If you don't want to take on a full day of walking you can choose a shorter route.

Padley Gorge

Photo Credit: Carlo Trolese

Another favourite of many who come to visit the Derbyshire. An enchanting walk perfect for those autumn days, paths surrounded by gnarled old oaks and birch trees, with rocks and boulders covered in moss helping to create mini waterfalls from the distinctive gorge running through the middle. There are also sights of interest along the way for you to discover, such as Longs haw Estates, Hathersage, Surprise View and Burbage. A walk that is loved by all who pass through and those who have lived in Derbyshire for generations.

Cosy Inns

There is really nothing better than a traditional village inn to warm the soul after finishing off a fresh Autumn walk or a brisk day out, our Devonshire inns have the perfect cosy atmosphere to end your day with a high and we'll make sure you get a real country welcome. Both The Devonshire Arms at Beeley and The Devonshire Arms at Pilsley hold history in their walls, with their original exposed beams, flagstones worn smooth with the passage of time and old English unique style. They are also located in quiet corners of the breath-taking Chatsworth Estate. Serving hearty delicious dishes, all made from locally sourced produce from the Chatsworth Estate or around Derbyshire, cold Derbyshire brewed pints and steamy hot drinks, these inns are the perfect spot for a respite.

Artisan Markets and Festivals

With towns across Derbyshire packed with close communities, you will always find a market or festival taking place. A favourite is the Bakewell Autumn Festival, where you can explore different cultures and comforting favourites, including things from food and drink to lovingly made gifts, crafts, plants and lots of entertainment for all the family, it makes for a heart warming visit. This will be running from 24th September - 25th September.

As well, there is Shipley Country Park Autumn Food & Drink Festival, where you can explore different delicacies and unusual foods with entertainment from live music, on the 4th September.

If you are looking for something more frequent, then Chesterfield hosts an Artisan market every month, highlighting the finest of artisan market traders. With the opportunity to browse stalls, taste culinary treats and talk to artists and design makers.

Photo Credit: Annie Spratt, Klye Nieber, Daria Shevtsova

Pumpkin Picking

Put your wellies on and wrap up warm to go pick the essential pumpkin for the spookiest time for year. Sure, you can pick them up in a shop but it isn't as rewarding as knowing your money is going directly to the farmer, and it doesn't give you the opportunity to get out in the fresh crisp air for some pumpkin picking fun. Village Pumpkins is open every weekend throughout October, its located in a beautiful setting with lots of pumpkin varieties and colours to choose, from tiny ones to huge ones, warty or smooth, orange, blue, white, yellow, stripy or spotty! Once you have finalised your selection you can treat yourself to a hot drink and a slice of pumpkin pie at the Pumpkin Hut.

Photo Credit: Village Pumpkins

Matlock Bath Illuminations

Every year between September and October, the Matlock Illuminations Festival takes place. Where residents decorate their boats in an array of coloured lights, some even making them into different objects such as planes, cars, even tractors or the odd carousel. They are then paraded along the River Derwent for all to see in wonderment.

Next to the river, Derwent gardens is the centre of a fair like atmosphere, holding food stalls, games tents and other delights, including a firework display as well. This tradition has been taking place since 1897, and it is the perfect way to enjoy an autumn evening, wrapped up and watching the glistening lights and firework display.

Photo Credit: Peak District Kids

Colossal Caverns

Poole's Cavern and Country Park

Photo Credit: Visit Peak District

Take a journey beneath the earth and explore the vast limestone caverns where you'll find crystal stalactites and stalagmites that have lined the chambers for millions of years. Discover the rich legend and history the Cavern holds, from the Victorian era when the Cavern boasted a bandstand, museum, monkey house and formal garden, to the very first lighting system being a series of huge candelabras. Beyond the Cavern you can stroll through the sensational Gin Low woodland trails. Find our more here.

Photo Credit: Speedwell Cavern

Speedwell Cavern

Take and underground journey by boat. Explore the inner world of the underground cave systems in the heart of the Peak District National Park. 105 steps down bellow the ground will bring you to an underground canal system where you take on a network of natural caverns and underground rivers on your tour guides boat. At the Halfway House you will enter a magnificent cathedral-like cavern where a huge subterranean lake lays waiting. It is a one of a kind experience that you wont find anywhere else. Find out more here.

Peak Cavern

Photo Credit:

Also known as Devil's Arse, located in the gorge below Peveril Castle the Caverns imposing entrance awaits. Guided tours take you on a journey of discovery, re-telling the lives of miners, seeing the remains of a rope makers village within the Cavern, as well as inscriptions dating back to the Middle Ages, an Orchestra Gallery used for singing to welcome the wealthy into the cave, large curtain stone stalactite formations and the highest vertical chamber in Britain. The Cavern holds concerts and Cave Cinema experiences here. Find out more here.

Peak District Holidays - Where To Stay?

Whether it is stepping out into the countryside to discover sensational views, exploring historical sites, or strolling around the streets of bustling towns, The Peak District has it all.

Are you wanting to extend your adventures now you have found there is so much to see, and are looking for somewhere to stay? We have a number of hotels, inn and holiday cottages in the Derbyshire area that are perfect for a countryside break. View our collection here.

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