5 great waterside walks in Derbyshire

River Wye, Bakewell

River Wye, Bakewell - Credit: Archant

These circular walks by rivers and reservoirs are perfect for warmer weather


Elvaston - Credit: Archant

Surrounded by 200 acres of woodland, parkland and beautifully-kept formal gardens, Elvaston Castle Country Park is a paradise for the public to enjoy. This interesting walk combines a wander round Elvaston’s maze of paths – where you can detour to the pretty lake – with a section of the Derwent Valley Heritage Way through riverside meadows.
DISTANCE: 6 miles
TERRAIN: Four stiles, three gates and several sets of steps.
MAP: OS Explorer 259 – Derby
DETAILS: derbyshirelife.co.uk/out-about/walks/derbyshire-walk-elvaston-1-3959803

Derwent Dam

Derwent Dam - Credit: Archant

Escape to the hills in the Upper Derwent Valley, often thought of as: ‘Derbyshire’s Lake District’. Start with a flying visit to the famous Derwent Dam and an amble along the reservoir road, before ascending through a woodland plantation to Lockerbrook Heights, where you are rewarded with amazing views. After a wander over elevated pasture, the route descends Hagg Side to finish with a stroll along the shoreline path of Ladybower.
DISTANCE: 5.5 miles
TERRAIN: Five gates, woodland paths and stony tracks with trip hazards. Steep slopes and paths close to deep water in reservoirs.
MAP: OS Explorer OL1 – Dark Peak
DETAILS: derbyshirelife.co.uk/out-about/places/derbyshire-walk-upper-derwent-valley-1-4151226

Chesterfield Canal

Chesterfield Canal - Credit: Archant

This is a relatively long but fairly easy-going walk, enlivened by pools, ponds and a canal. Although never far from urban areas of Chesterfield and its suburbs, the route is surprisingly rural and scenic, passing nature reserves, lakes and parkland, and through a long stretch of old established woodland.
DISTANCE: 8 miles
TERRAIN: Two gates, six stiles, numerous steps and close promixity to deep water.
MAP: OS Explorer 269 – Chesterfield and Alfreton
DETAILS: derbyshirelife.co.uk/out-about/walks/derbyshire-walk-chesterfield-canal-1-4652943


Belper - Credit: Archant

Offering a chance to admire part of the Derwent Valley Mills UNESCO World Heritage Site, this walk near Belper wanders through riverside meadows, meanders along quiet lanes and ascends an old path where you are rewarded with views across the valley. Along the way see how the River Derwent has been shaped and is swollen by a succession of weirs and sluices, and marvel at the old mills, early industrial factories and housing, often sympathetically preserved alongside modern counterparts.
DISTANCE: 6.25 miles
TERRAIN: Seven stiles, three gates, several sets of steps and uneven terrain. Some sections without pavements.
MAP: OS Explorer 259 – Derby
DETAILS: derbyshirelife.co.uk/out-about/walks/derwent-valley-walk-belper-1-3768462

Coalpit Bridge, Bakewell

Coalpit Bridge, Bakewell - Credit: Archant

This scenic walk from Bakewell includes riverside stetches, historic buildings and elevated footpaths. Part way round, a highlight is the aerial view down onto the River Wye and the weirs of Lathkill Dale. Stop for refreshments on route at the Lathkil Hotel – famed for its far-reaching views – and end your walk with a wander round the shops and a well-deserved slice of Bakewell Pudding.
DISTANCE: 6.5 miles
TERRAIN: 10 stiles and 10+ gates as well as uneven terrain.
MAP: OS Explorer OL24
DETAILS: derbyshirelife.co.uk/out-about/walks/peak-district-walk-bakewell-1-3644531