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Family-friendly Cycle Rides In The Peak District

Family-friendly cycle rides in the Peak District 

Family-friendly cycle rides in the Peak District are in abundance. If you are holiday in the Peaks in one of our beautiful cottages, we’ve put together our favourite places.

Cycling allows you to take in the scenery and keep fit at the same time. With more than 300km of cycle ways in Derbyshire, there is a route for every kind of rider, from beginner to pro. Take your whole family and explore Derbyshire and Staffordshire’s beautiful rolling hills. Experience rugged peaks, canal towpaths and gentle greenways.

On your travels, you’ll come across footpaths, disused railway lines and scenic country roads hidden away from the hustle and bustle of everyday life.

Here’s our five favourite rides.


This Ladybower cycle route takes you around one half of the Y-shaped reservoir along paved and gravel paths.

It follows a similar route to the Ladybower Reservoir walk. However this route keeps to the road on the Western side. Children don’t need to cycle on the road. Instead, use the pavement, which is clear of walkers as the majority use the footpath alongside the reservoir.

The Manifold Trail

The Manifold Trail is set in the peaceful Staffordshire side of the Peak District. It follows the route of the disused Leek and Manifold Light Railway, through the Manifold and Hamps Valleys. It runs for nine miles from Hulme End to Waterhouses near Leek. There’s plenty of opportunity to soak up the scenery and look out for local wildlife along the way.

The Tissington Trail

Running between the beautiful market towns of Ashbourne and Buxton, the pretty Tissington Trail was one of the last of the Victorian railways. It supplied milk to London and several quarries were opened along the track sending limestone to the industrial areas. The trail is easily accessible and offers miles of flat, easy-going cycling for all the family to enjoy with wonderful views of the surrounding countryside. Cycle hire is available at both ends of the linear trail, at Parsley Hay and Ashbourne.

The High Peak Trail

The High Peak Trail offers 17.5 miles of traffic free cycling from High Peak Junction near Cromford to Dowlow, six miles south of Buxton. The route follows the former Cromford and High Peak Railway, one of the world’s first long-distance railway lines, built between 1825 and 1830. Many important railway buildings and features can still be seen, including High Peak Junction Workshops, Middleton Top Engine House, Hopton Tunnel and Hopton Incline. Cycle hire is available at Middleton Top.

Carsington Water

Who needs the seaside when you’ve got Carsington Water? This gentle eight-mile off-road route takes in scenic landscapes and picturesque woodland. The trail offers a great cycling experience for all the family. There’s a three-mile cycle loop perfect for little legs and an eight-mile loop for those want a little more of a challenge. There’s also a large Severn Trent visitors centre, with eateries and a huge playground.

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