The Peak District has a wealth of quiet minor roads suitable for cycle touring. In addition, there is plenty of off-road action for both inexperienced and experienced mountain bikers on fantastic singletrack, bridleways and other tracks (see mountain biking page).

Generally, the BOATs (Byways Open to All Traffic) have been pretty badly damaged by the off-road motorists enjoying the peace, quiet and fresh air of the countryside (as have some bridleways and indeed footpaths as well). In some places they are virtually impassable for horses, walkers and cyclists during the winter months. For example, the Limestone way just north of Litton Mill - we were OK on our mountain bikes but the water filled ruts, created by the 4x4 drivers and off-road motorcyclists, were impassable for a fell runner (not elderly I might add), who had to cross the wall into the adjacent field to pass the 2-foot deep water.

There are several Peak District cycle hire centres for those who wish to cycle and are unable to bring their bikes. Peak Tours also provide Cycle Hire & Delivery to anywhere in the Peak District and for anyone looking to find a camping or caravan spot visit Peak District Campsites.

Mountain bike and cycling books

The Peak District (AA 40 Pub Walks & Cycle Rides)

Cycling in the Peak District: Off Road Trails and Quiet Lanes

Mountain Bike Guide: Quality Routes in the Peak District and Derbyshire

More Cycling Without Traffic: The Midlands and Peak District

Off Beat Cycling and Mountain Biking in the Peak District (Paperback)

Mountain Bike Guide - Derbyshire and the Peak District

The routes below are just outlines, it is recommended that you study them on a map before using them. You need to satisfy yourself that the members of your party are capable of handling the potential hazards. For suggestions for mtb (mountain bike) routes, please see the separate Peak District mountain biking page. For a comprehensive new web site about cycling in the Peak District see


Follow the Monsal trail past the Country Bookstore, leave the trail and go through Great Longstone and on to Monsal Head. From Monsal Head you can return to Bakewell via Ashford in the Water. For a longer route, cross the A6 at Ashford, climb up through Sheldon and back into Bakewell at Lady Manners' School.

From Bakewell, go up to Lady Manners' School and follow the road into Over Haddon. At Over Haddon, take the road overlooking Lathkill Dale to Monyash. Turn left in the centre of the village, cross the busy A515 to pick up the High Peak trail at Parsley Hay. Come off the trail at Longcliffe and come back on yourself to reach Bakewell via Elton, Dale End, Youlgrave, crossing the River Lathkill at Conksbury Bridge.

Derwent Valley Mills UNESCO World Heritage Site

This describes an outline road cycling itinerary on which you can visit the key sites of this UNESCO declared World Heritage site. There is a little riding on busy roada and surfaced cycles track but it mainly follows minor roads to take you from close to the centre of Derby to Matlock Bath via Darley Abbey, Milford, Belper and Cromford. Click here for the cycling intinerary ...


Climb out of Hathersage on the Sheffield road and turn off this to go past Higgar Tor. Shortly after Higgar, double back down to the main car park at Stanage Edge, turn right and right again past the Stanage Plantation car park, past Bamford Edge and down to Yorkshire Bridge. Cross the main road and follow the back roads to Hope. From Hope, cut across to Bradwell, on to Great Hucklow (back roads parallel the main road), through to Abney and down to Leadmill. From there, it is just a short distance back to Hathersage.

Alternatively, from Hope head out to Castleton and up through Winnats pass, crossing Mam Nick by Mam Tor and enjoy the whizz to Edale. Follow the Edale Valley and rejoin the main road to Hathersage at Hope. This makes a figure of 8 route.

High Peak Trail

There are plenty of places to join the trail which is a dismantled railway (see the High Peak Trail page for more information about the Cromford and High Peak Railway). You can start at the Cromford canal junction (3/4 mile incline to get you warmed up!!) and go almost to Buxton. For a flatter start, you could go from Middleton Top which misses out the main climbs or start at the Buxton end. Parsley Hay and Friden are also popular starting points.

Tissington Trail

Another dismantled railway running from Ashbourne to join the High Peak trail south of Parsley Hay. You could make a longer circular ride by starting at Ashbourne, then head SE on the High Peak trail from Parsley Hay, coming off at Middleton Top or Black rocks and return to Ashbourne via the roads and assorted bridleways.

Manifold Way

Image: Manifold Way, Derbyshire and Staffordshire border, Peak Disctict cycle and pedestrian trail.This runs from Waterhouses to Hulme End and passes through the valleys of the river Hamps and Manifold. Off road trail and minor road cycling. Passes the Thor's Cave and the Ecton Copper mine, following the track bed of the former narrow gauge Leek and Manifold Valley Light Railway. Click here for more information about the Manifold Way and Leek and Manifold Valley Light Railway.





Other links ...

Dateactive - dating for cycling singles, walkers, cyclists, climbers, sailors ...

Folding Bike Society - even if you are not yet an owner of a folding bike, this site could inspire you!

Disclaimer (probably not really necessary but just in case ...).

These routes are suggestions only and should not be used in this form for navigation. It is up to your party to decide whether a route is suitable or not and to make sure that you are properly equipped. Navigation is also the responsibility of your party. We cannot accept any liability for injuries or other mishaps.

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