Mat­lock Bath, Der­byshire

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Look­ing at the stun­ning scenery sur­round­ing this town, you could for­get that you’re in the uk. with ca­ble cars as­cend­ing the nearby Heights of abraham and mat­lock’s high street which curves around the cliff, it would be easy to mis­take the set­ting for an alpine vil­lage.

What to do

i found the best way to savour the peak dis­trict’s beau­ti­ful land­scapes was on a brisk coun­try walk. stan­age edge, with its fa­mous mill­stones, is one of the most pop­u­lar spots for hik­ing and rock climb­ing. al­though it’s quite a steep in­cline up to the cliff face, it’s only a 10-minute walk. once you’ve caught your breath, you’ll en­joy one of the peak dis­trict’s best van­tage points, with daz­zling views of the sur­round­ing moor­lands.

the real high­light of our trip, though, was chatsworth House. the epit­ome of en­glish­ness, Jane austen mod­elled mr darcy’s pem­ber­ley on the mag­nif­i­cent stately home. and vis­i­tors will im­me­di­ately un­der­stand why she was so in­spired. the man­sion is a mag­nif­i­cent build­ing that houses an im­pres­sive col­lec­tion of art­work and sculp­ture, with some pieces dat­ing back 4,000 years. with a fur­ther 105 acres of land, the chatsworth gar­dens are ever-evolv­ing and worth a stroll, com­bin­ing stun­ning plant­ing schemes with 18th-cen­tury water features and mod­ern art.

Where to stay

we stayed in the new Bath Ho­tel & spa, which first opened in 1811 and boasts stylish, bright in­te­ri­ors. the ho­tel’s su­perb restau­rant serves the best of lo­cal pro­duce. we also made use of its tran­quil spa fa­cil­i­ties by en­joy­ing a re­viv­ing mas­sage.

What to eat

af­ter scal­ing the heights of stan­age edge, we headed for the near­est pub. we stum­bled upon the charm­ing 16th-cen­tury plough inn in Hather­sage, which serves up hearty Bri­tish clas­sics. i can highly rec­om­mend the fish and chips here, es­pe­cially af­ter a chal­leng­ing walk.

if you visit chatsworth House, round off your day with a stop-off at the es­tate’s cafe, housed in con­verted sta­bles, for af­ter­noon tea. choose from a se­lec­tion of ex­otic brews and tuck into traditional finger sand­wiches, mac­a­roons and scones, for a truly in­dul­gent treat.

Travel de­tails

a stan­dard dou­ble room at the new Bath Ho­tel & spa is priced from £89 per night. trains to mat­lock Bath are lim­ited, but there are good con­nec­tions from nearby derby sta­tion. driv­ing is the best means of ex­plor­ing this part of the coun­try, as public trans­port is in­fre­quent.

This charm­ing town is full of char­ac­ter

Chatsworth House En­joy amaz­ing views at the Heights of Abraham Stan­age Edge

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