Hampshire Hikes & Historical Sites
Bring intriguing coastal trails and history alive in South Hampshire
Walk the hilltops, dales and gorges of Britain's first National Park on this holiday exploring the highlights of the Peak District
What does this mean?
Tour codes: 73205
Full day walks with moderate amounts of ascent and descent.
The paths are mostly good, but there may be some steep and rough ground.
Walks will last up to 6 hours and could involve as much as 750m of ascent and descent. Some walks will be less demanding.
The rippling waters of the River Dove cut through a steep sided limestone gorge. Strips of broad-leaved woodland line the banks. Suddenly you emerge into grassland with sweeping views and dry stone walls, descending gently to the village of Ilam, with its ancient cross and tidy, flower filled gardens.
From the hotel, you can ascend the rocky precipice of the Heights of Abraham on wooded paths above the Derwent Gorge. Other days we may wander through the deer park opposite Chatsworth House, take in the panoramic views from Harborough Rocks or follow the river Lathkill from stream to flowing river.
We will explore part of the canal system and see how it connected to the High Peak railway. We will also walk on part of the High Peak Trail, built on this old railway line which closed in 1967 and encounter Britain’s industrial heritage, all directly from our hotel at Matlock Bath.
The limestone White Peak area of the southern Peak District is an ideal base for a holiday at this moderate walking grade. You will be surrounded by beautiful limestone crags, valleys, streams and rivers. Panoramic views over fascinating countryside will be your reward to be enjoyed from the local high points you will reach.
On the last day, slightly further afield, we will be walking in the area known as the Black Peak and meet up with the Gritstone Edge, some would say a harsher landscape; which also holds the secrets of the plague village of Eyam.
The rugged beauty of this area is overwhelming and makes it a wonderful place to walk: rolling hills, tranquil dales, gorges, magnificent rock formations, evidence of a history which changed the world and some beautiful towns of honey coloured stone.
NO Single Room Supplement (for 2021 departures only) - rooms without a supplement are subject to availability.
Click the button below for a detailed Holiday Information Sheet containing all the particulars about this trip.
NOTE: Itineraries and Holiday Information Sheets can vary by a specific date chosen
Itinerary & Travel
Whilst every effort will be made to adhere to the outlined itinerary and advertised programme, local conditions can change due to weather or other unforeseen circumstances. This may mean that routes and timings need to be amended or the order of days may change, sometimes at short notice.
Due to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, we may unfortunately need to withdraw a tour that is currently confirmed to operate and we therefore reserve the right to cancel your booking. We would always do our utmost to give you plenty of notice should we have to do this. Selected elements of this tour, including local attractions and restaurants, may change at late notice. Please ensure you have valid insurance cover before you travel.
Independent arrival at the New Bath Hotel and Spa in Matlock Bath. Check in is available from 3pm. You will meet your tour leader and group members prior to dinner for a briefing and welcome.
Dinner each evening is taken in the hotel restaurant.
Today we take transport to Youlgreave and can have a look at the church with a Burne-Jones window, before descending to the river Bradford with its fish-ponds. We ascend to the typical Derbyshire limestone uplands with their white stone field boundary walls; then descend to Lathkill Dale which is one of the prettiest dales in the Peak District. This part of the walk starts in a dry valley, after a while water issues from a side cave and gradually the stream widens to a placid river.
This is a walk through our industrial heritage. We will walk from the hotel passing near Arkwright’s Mill then walk beside the Cromford Canal to the beginning of the High Peak Trail. This former railway line was one of the steepest in the country and we reach winding sheds where the beam engines can be seen which hauled the trains up the incline. We stop for coffee at Middleton Top. We continue to a viewpoint at Harborough Rocks and then descend through woods to Cromford before returning to the hotel.
A minibus will take us to the pretty village of Hartington where you will have time to look around before crossing the fields to the famous River Dove, which marks the border between Derbyshire and Staffordshire. We will walk in both counties as we climb through the well named Narrowdale to the pretty village of Alstonefield. Then back down to the valley of the Dove at Milldale for lunch. We stay beside the Dove after lunch, and enjoy a complete change of scenery as we pass caves and rocks with interesting names until we reach Lovers Leap from where we descend to cross the famous stepping stones and make our way across to Ilam Hall, a National Trust property offering refreshments. We then return to the hotel by minibus.
Arguably the finest walk of the week with contrasts, views, and poignant history. We start besides the river Derwent in the Chatsworth estate deer park with fine views of the house. After a visit to the village of Edensor we climb to the famous Gritstone edge. A walk along the edge and a steep descent brings us gradually to the plague village of Eyam. Time to look around and think about the terrible events of 1666 before our transport takes us back to our hotel.
Independent departure from the New Bath Hotel and Spa after breakfast. Check out is by 11am. We hope you have had an enjoyable holiday and look forward to welcoming you on another soon.
Departure dates for your selected tour
5th Sep 2021 - 10th Sep 2021 (5 Nights)
26th Sep 2021 - 1st Oct 2021 (5 Nights)
3rd Oct 2021 - 8th Oct 2021 (5 Nights)
10th Apr 2022 - 15th Apr 2022 (5 Nights)
3rd Jul 2022 - 8th Jul 2022 (5 Nights)
4th Sep 2022 - 9th Sep 2022 (5 Nights)
2nd Oct 2022 - 7th Oct 2022 (5 Nights)
Private coach transport to and from the trailheads, when necessary, is included in the price of your holiday.
The hotel has plenty of guest car parking.
Below is the accommodation featured on this holiday across all departure dates. Please refer to the Itinerary for more detail about each night's accommodation for each departure date.
NEW for 2021, you will stay at the modern 3 star New Bath Hotel and Spa located in the popular village of Matlock Bath. This comfortable hotel includes an outdoor natural spring fed thermal pool, no chlorine or chemicals are required. You can sit back and relax in the hotel's spa area. Maybe try its thermal hot tub, sauna, steam room or a treatment. The outdoor natural pool is complimentary but the spa area (including the hot tub, sauna, steam room and treatments) are from £15.00 per person.
We stay in modern and comfortable en suite rooms. All single rooms include a double bed. All bedrooms include both a bath and shower, TV, Wi-F, hairdryer and tea/coffee making facilities. The bedrooms are spacious and all have a very luxurious feel about them.
Breakfasts and dinners are taken in the hotel restaurant. Please note that the hotel only serves a continental breakfast and does not offer cooked breakfasts. You can help yourself to a wide range of items which include cereals, yoghurts, fresh fruit, pastries, bread and toast.
This is a Grade 5 moderate holiday which includes full day walks with moderate amounts of ascent and descent. The paths and tracks on the walks each day are mostly good, but there may be some steep and rough ground and some muddy fields depending on the weather at the time. Walks will last 6 to 7 hours including stops and include a daily mileage of between 9 and 10 miles. The High Peak Trail walk is the longest walk of the holiday, with a length of either 9 or possibly as much as 12 miles but it can be taken slowly as there are lots of stops along the way.
Local Transport Costs
All local transport costs in conjunction with the advertised activity programme are included in the holiday cost. There may be occasions where additional visits or excursions are added to enrich your experience, these will be paid for locally by you if you choose to participate. Local transport can be a mix of private hire coaches, taxis, local buses and ferries depending on the itinerary.
A range of local excursions and activities may be available to book at your destination through a local operator. We have no involvement in such activities or excursions which are not run, supervised or controlled in any way by us. Your contract will be with the local activity supplier and we accept no responsibility for their actions or omissions.
When budgeting for your holiday, you will need to consider drinks, any meals not included in the holiday price, non-included entrance fees, optional excursions you may choose to participate in locally and any souvenirs or additional services such as laundry. A general guideline for lunches and drinks is £10-£20 per person per day.
Although entirely at your own discretion, tipping is an important aspect of tourism and hospitality life and expectations are fairly high. In order to simplify tipping, we strongly recommend that you allow your leader to take care of making sure tips are given to hotel and restaurant staff and to local guides and drivers. This will be done using some funds provided by us together with, if you wish, a contribution from you, which he/she will collect during the holiday.
Your tour leader makes the world of difference to your holiday and ours are as passionate about discovering the world on foot as you are. They're resourceful, organised and widely travelled. They will handle all the local administration and other needs that might arise to ensure that you don't have to worry about planning your days and you can enjoy your holiday. Although leading group holidays, they won't forget that every group is made up of individuals. Each tour leader has their own individual style, talents and professional backgrounds and all are trained, qualified, experienced and dedicated to making your holiday as enjoyable, interesting and inspiring as possible.
Leader's Evening Briefing
Each evening, your tour leader will discuss with you the programme for the following day. This will be your opportunity to discuss the details and ensure the planned activities suit your walking ability. If you have concerns on clothing or equipment, this can be discussed then also. If you do not wish to join the organised group programme, please let the leader know.
To reach the hotel...
By car from the South: Take the M1 to junction 26 and follow the A610 towards Ripley and Ambergate, where the A610 ends. Turn right and follow the A6 until you pass a sign for the start of Matlock Bath. Almost immediately turn left into New Bath Road where the hotel is easily visible.
By car from the North: Take the M1 to junction 28 and follow the A38 towards Derby for 3 miles. Follow signs to Matlock via the A615. At the roundabout in Matlock turn left and follow the A6 for approximately 2 miles through Matlock Bath until the speed limit changes to 40mph. Very soon turn right into New Bath Road where the hotel is easily visible on the right.
By rail: The nearest train station to the hotel is at Cromford or Matlock Bath. Trains are available on the Derby to Matlock line, however there are limited services on Sundays so please check before you travel. The hotel is a 15 minute walk from Matlock Bath train station and 25 minute walk from Cromford train station. If you require a taxi we advise you to pre-book as there is no telephone at either station. (Matlock Taxis 01629 584195 or Maz Taxis 07598 161151).
By air: Nottingham East Midlands and Manchester airports are accessible by road and public transport.
You may also wish to look at the following website for advice on the best way to travel to the accommodation: www.rome2rio.com
The hotel has a complimentary car park. Please note there are steep steps to enter the hotel.
Personal Details Check
To ensure that we can accurately administer your holiday arrangements, please confirm that the personal details we hold for you are up to date and that you have provided the information we need to secure your holiday travel and accommodation arrangements. Please check your passport details, date of birth and any other important details necessary for us to properly manage your holiday booking. You can view and update information already provided, and add details not yet asked for, by using the Manage My Booking facility on our website www.ramblersholidays.co.uk, or by calling our Sales and Reservations team on +44 (0)1707 331133. When you receive your booking confirmation please check the details as soon as possible.
Passport Information for United Kingdom
Any non UK or EU citizens may be subject to passport, identity card or visa requirements to enter the United Kingdom.
Accommodation is on a half board basis with buffet breakfasts and dinners taken at the hotel. Picnic lunches are not included.
Lightweight waterproof walking boots with a good moulded sole (such as Vibram or similar) and a deep tread and which provide ankle support are strongly recommended and may be essential for some walks.
General Kit List
Outdoor activities are always safer and more enjoyable if you are prepared.
If you have not travelled with us before the following list might be of use:
This list is not exhaustive and every walker is different and may have their own preference.
Travel Documents Checklist
Documents and Information to take with you:
Water To Go
An alternative to bottled water from single-use sealed water bottles is filtered water from a refillable bottle containing its own water filter such as a Water-to-go bottle available from www.watertogo.eu. Just fill up from any water source and save the environment from disposable plastic bottles.
We have negotiated an exclusive 15% discount with our partners Water-to-Go for you as a thank you for helping the environment. Please go to their website at www.watertogo.eu and enter the code RWH17 when ordering. In addition, Water-to-Go will match the discount with a donation to our charity, Heart & Sole, which will allow us to continue to make a difference in the countries you visit on our holidays.
Maps, Guidebooks & More
Our intended walks are covered by the following map:
Ordnance Survey (1:25,000)
OL24 The Peak District White Peak area
The Map Shop
If you cannot find the maps or books locally we recommend:
The Map Shop
5 High Street
Upton upon Severn, Worcs
If you key many of the local places mentioned in this holiday fact sheet into YouTube, you will find a vast array of spectacular footage of the area.
Health requirements can change at any time. It is your own responsibility to ensure that you inform yourself from a professionally qualified source on, and comply with, such requirements at least 6 to 8 weeks before departure. Advice on vaccinations is available from your GP.
Health Advice for United Kingdom
No compulsory immunisations are required for holidays in the UK although you should be up to date with the usual immunisations recommended for life in Britain. Tetanus immunisation is recommended.
Further Travel Advice
For further advice please visit:
You might wish to take a small bottle of antibacterial hand gel with you for times when you're unable to wash your hands.
Although not compulsory for British and EU citizens resident in the UK, we strongly recommend that you take out travel insurance to cover you in the event of eventualities such as unexpected cancellation, accident or illness before your holiday or the loss of personal possessions.
Visitors who are not British Citizens (or who are not EU citizens resident in the UK), must be adequately insured to join our holidays and will be unable to participate in our local walking and other activity programmes without being able to demonstrate that you have valid travel insurance.
The UK Foreign, Commonwealth & Development Office provides up to date information on security and local laws for travellers, together with current passport and visa information, at www.gov.uk/travelaware. Please take a few minutes to look at the current advice on your planned destination.
Please be aware of what's going on around you, take sensible precautions with your credit cards and passport and avoid displays of wealth such as wearing expensive jewellery or watches. Do not carry more cash on you than you will need for each day, and we recommend that a money belt is used.
We're committed to ethical tourism in all our destinations. Our holidays are designed for you to discover the essence of the country you are visiting. Travelling in small groups not only gives you an up close and personal experience of your destination, but minimises your impact on the immediate environment. We feel that the most important starting point to protect the environment is to be out in it. For more details visit our website.
The Ramblers Holidays Charitable Trust
Unlike many tour operators we have our own trust through which RWH Travel’s profits are channelled back into a variety of outdoor, walking-related or environmental conservation projects in the UK. The focus of the Trust’s financial support is Britain’s leading walking charity, The Ramblers, and their role in promoting the benefits and importance of walking to the British public. In addition the Trust welcomes applications for small grants from local organisations in the UK who need support for walking-orientated activities. This includes the establishment of footpaths and bridleways, funding for rebuilding bridges and renovating huts, as well as bursary funding for the Duke of Edinburgh’s Award for children who could not otherwise afford to do it. Please visit the ‘About Us’ section of our website and click on the Charitable Trust link for more details.
Heart and Sole
We appreciate that we are in a fortunate position to be able to use our profits to help make a difference to people's lives. Heart & Sole is a venture managed by our office staff, whose aim is to reach the heart of the communities in the countries we visit. Through Heart & Sole, we hope to make more of a long term, direct impact to these communities, particularly in less developed countries where even a small amount goes a long way. See our website for more information and details of some of the projects we support.
Please do provide us with a mobile phone contact number. We will only use this to contact you with important information relating to your holiday arrangements.
Do keep your mobile phones switched on and readily available when travelling to the airport or if delayed in transit so that we can contact you with any last minute information relating to your travel arrangements.
As a matter of courtesy, please switch off your mobile phone during walks, or endeavour to minimise its use. Please also try to minimise the use of mobile devices during group meals.
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