Why visit the Peak District?
There are 13 National Parks in England and Wales, and the Peak District was the first national park to be established in 1951. The Peak District is located centrally in England and covers more the 550 square miles. The park has stunning landscapes to enjoy throughout the year, from the edges, to the reservoirs, viaducts, cycleways and varied wildlife and habitats. The park has been shaped by people and nature over thousands of years.
The Peak District National Park has three main landscapes, the Dark Peak, White Peak and South West Peak. The Dark Peak is composed of more rugged landscapes, providing ideal territory for visitors looking for challenging walks and outdoor experiences. It is well known for the gritstone plateaus and heather moorlands. The landscape is wild and remote and includes wooded areas too. The White Peak is characterised by limestone dales, with meadows, pastures, dry-stone walls and varied habitats. Derwent House is located close to the edge of the White Peak. The South West Peak has similarities to the Dark Peak, although with smaller area of moorland interlinked with hedges, pastures and farmland.
Protected for nature conservation
Over a third of the area is protected for nature conservation and the varied landscapes provide ideal habitats for an abundance of plants and animals. The Peak District has been inhabited for over 10,000 years and this has contributed to a rich biodiversity, social and cultural history. A real gem in the National Parks across England and Wales.
3 Dark Sky sites
An increasing popular attraction of the Peak District is the access it gives to dark night skies. In many parts of the UK light pollution makes it nearly impossible to see the wonderful night skies. There are three dedicated ‘Dark Sky Places’ in the Peak District:
- Minninglow, off the A515 at Pikehall (nearest postcode DE4 2PN, approximately 9 miles from Derwent House)
- Parsley Hay, off the A515 near Hartington (nearest postcode SK17 0DG, approximately 13 miles from Derwent House)
- Surprise View, off the A6187 near Hathersage (approximately 19 miles from Derwent House.
5 good reasons to visit the Peak District
- Stunning landscapes and open spaces
- Wonderful walks for all abilities
- Cycling, climbing and other outdoor pursuits
- Amazing photograph opportunities
- History and culture and events throughout the year
Want to avoid the hassle of trying to find a good walk in the Peak District? Walking the Peaks provide a selection of free walks for instant download as a PDF. Each guide includes a detailed route description with photos of key navigation points, transport details, information about cafes and pubs. The route is shown on both a Harvey map and a link to Google Maps.
Places to walk on Google Map
Click on the map numbers for details, opening times and contact details.