Fun and inclusive places to visit in the Peak District and Derbyshire

20 January 2022

Accessibility and inclusivity are not normally words we’d use to describe rural areas and country escapes.

But this itinerary proves otherwise. Here, discover five inclusive and diverse places in the Peak District and Derbyshire where everyone is welcome.

A family day out at Chatsworth House

A visit to Chatsworth House, often referred to as ‘the jewel in the Peak District’s crown’, is a must to tick off the bucket list. 

Home to the Duke and Duchess of Devonshire, the house is nestled in the town of Bakewell and its history dates back to the 16th-century.

You can explore the house’s 25 beautifully decorated rooms which will take you through a timeline of the occupants’ rich family history. 

The rooms feature the lavish outfits worn by the Duchesses of Devonshire dating as far back as the 1800s – look in awe at the grand and regal-looking Painted Hall, adorned with a magnificent collection of antiques and artefacts.

The ceiling is decorated with detailed murals showing scenes from the life of Julius Caesar by Louis Laguerre.

Chatsworth holds extraordinary works of art that date back 4,000 years such as ancient Roman and Egyptian sculptures, as well as outstanding works of modern-day art by Lucian Freud and Edmund de Waal. 

You can take a tractor ride around the 105-acre garden which has been carefully cultivated for nearly 500 years and features an arboretum, rock garden, maze, fountains, sculptures and more.  

There’s a woodland playground that will give your little ones hours of adventures and fun, with a rope park and trampoline, slides, water and sand play. 

They’ll have the opportunity to meet Eugenie, the rare breed Suffolk Punch mare, and Grace, the pygmy goat at the farmyard.  

Visitors usually prefer to visit during the summer to enjoy the garden and farmyard, but Chatsworth is truly special all year round.

Dukes Barn Outdoor Activity Centre

Dukes Barn Outdoor Activity Centre provides adventurous activities for people of all ages and abilities. 

It’s very much an inclusive place and primarily works with autistic kids, kids with hearing or sight impairment, and physical disabilities.

The centre also runs courses for primary and secondary school children and those from disadvantaged backgrounds or poor inner-city areas.

Qualified and experienced staff tailor programmes to your child’s requirements so that the activities are manageable but also challenge their abilities.

After conquering a range of activities such as abseiling, canoeing and stream scrambling, the kids will leave feeling confident and happy with what they’ve achieved. 

Miles without Stiles at the Peak District

Often when we think of rural areas we think of mountains and inaccessible areas where the beauty of nature is out of reach.

But journeys have been made easier for those with limited mobility so they can enjoy spectacular nature without any barriers.

Miles without Stiles are well-surfaced, easy access routes without stiles, steps, or steep gradients for everyone to experience idyllic views, moorland expanses and distinctive habitats.

Miles without Stiles are suitable for people of all fitness levels and those with limited mobility, including wheelchair users, families with pushchairs, and the visually impaired. Some routes are suitable for young children to cycle on.

The routes are clearly graded to show whether they are accessible for ‘all’, ‘many’ or ‘some’ and are available to download online.

Baby and toddler friendly: Hall Farm Holiday Cottages

Hall Farm Cottages in Wetton, the Peak District is the perfect place to stay if you are travelling with babies or toddlers.

The owners, Emily and Tom, have got everything covered. Babies and toddlers experience endless hours of fun and play at Hall Farm Holiday. 

There’s a play barn, outdoor play area, lawns with a variety of toys and games and friendly chickens to make friends with! 

You’ll stay in one of three beautiful stone-built cosy cottages surrounded by beautiful views that will help you to relax and rewind. 

Dogs are welcome, so they won’t have to miss out on all the family fun.

Millie's Hayfield Halal Tearoom, Chocolatier and Bed & Breakfast

Finding halal food in rural areas can be a trek, but Millie’s saves the day.

Millie’s is an independent business in Hayfield, Peak District owned by Rukiya Dadhiwala.

See if you can join one of the chocolate workshops where you’ll learn about the science behind making your favourite chocolates, and you can take the delicious treats home.

All of Millie’s chocolates are handmade on site. Millie’s has chocolates to tantalise anyone’s taste buds, from classic dark, milk and white chocolates to fancy chocolates with a unique filling. 

All chocolates are suitable for vegetarians, are halal, and free from alcohol.

Haroon Mota, the founder of Muslim Hikers, organised an afternoon tea hike package with Rukiya and in just three hours the tickets sold out. 

The event was so popular that approximately 80 people are on a waiting list to participate in the next afternoon tea hike. If you wish to participate contact Muslim Hikers on their Instagram page.

The Peak District offers great diversity; family-friendly activities, baby, and toddler-friendly places to stay, special needs-friendly activities, accessible footpaths for disabled people, and paths for cyclists and so much more.

When will your next trip be?

For those who seek a peaceful getaway from busy cities, and thrill-seekers who want to conquer some adrenaline-pumping activities, the Peak District is everyone’s playground.

There’s an endless list of what you could do in the Peak District: relax at a spa, visit a stately home, go for a countryside walk, or have a picnic by one of the reservoirs.

You can enjoy visiting the area alone or make treasured memories with friends and family. But either way, you’ll keep coming back to recreate the special moments.