Cycling – explore the beauty of the Peak District on two wheels

We think the Peak District is one of the best places for leisure cycling.  The unique and varied landscape offers you a range of great cycling experiences - family-friendly trails, organised group tours, and longer routes for more experienced cyclists who are seeking some challenging hill climbs.

A cyclist resting, sitting beside his bike, on the grassy banks of a river, with the river and a weeping willow in view, courtesy of Glory Days Bikes

There are over 65 miles of easy-going trails for you to explore, hundreds of miles of quiet lanes as well as varied and challenging mountain bike routes. Keen road cyclists can enjoy some of the best iconic 'cycling climbs' of the Peak District - Winnats Pass, Monsal Head, Rowsley Bar, Curbar Edge and Holme Moss.

Pretty villages, superb views, interesting history, fascinating wildlife and geology - it's all here for you to enjoy. You see, smell and hear a lot more when you're travelling slowly by bike.


Take the family on off-road trails
A Photo from Monsal Trail Bike Hire website of the viaduct at Monsal Head and lush green rolling hills in the background

Our first experiences of cycling in the Peak District were based around family days out with our children and friends. We go to nearby Monsal Trail Cycle Hire, at Hassop Station, Bakewell because they make it so easy. You can get tag-alongs and baby seats so the whole family can go and the staff can help you with any repairs to your own bikes. Turn up and ride - just bring ID. No need to book unless you fancy electric or tandem bicycles. You will ride through the spectacular tunnels and enjoy stunning views of Monsal Dale and Water cum Jolly Dale.  

We can also recommend child friendly and mainly flat, off road cycling trails further a field at Parsley Hay (Tissington Trail) and Carsington Water.  Both of these need to be booked in advance. 

A photo Carsington Water website showing children wearing helmets cycling on the paths around Carsington Water

Choose from a range of on-road cycling routes

Road cycling enthusiasts will probably wish to bring their bikes with them. Our friends Jane and Chris, seen below setting off from Darley House, are in this category.   They simply love cycling and do many annual sportifs including Mont Ventoux!  

Jane and Chris took a varied 30km route from Darley House through Chatsworth, on to Bakewell, up to Monyash and back through beautiful Winster. They definitely recommend the hot tub hire for relaxing in after this ride!

Friends of the owner of Darley House setting out on a cycle ride from Darley House

Glory Days Bikes, specialists in retro and vintage bike hire, recommend their "Journeys of Discovery" by bike - a series of circular road and trail routes.  The Peak District National Park  lists a range of itineraries on their Explorerslider, from easy to challenging, which are ideal for exploring slowly by bike.

​Darley House guests who want to plan their own cycle routes are very welcome to borrow the many maps and books of cycles routes and trails we have at the house.


Have a lightweight vintage bike delivered to your doorstep
Close up of a Glory Days Bike vintage bike (leather saddle and duck egg blue cross bars) with the Peak District scenery in the background

We know that bringing your bikes is not always practical.  Glory Days Bikes can help with bike hire and deliver direct to Darley House.  Darley House guests pay just £40 a day and can get 4 days for the price of 3 - just let them know you are staying with us.  All their vintage bikes are made from lightweight steel tubing of British manufacture. You can also hire panniers, pumps and maps free of charge so you're ready to explore. 


Or try mountain biking... 
A close up of a section of a mountain bike, with its thick tyres, with blue skies and the tops of rolling Derbyshire hills in the background

There are some fabulous mountain biking routes in the Peak District too.  Flattyres - MTB  give well laid out maps and detailed instructions for routes in both the White and the Dark Peak.

If you are a beginner or want to improve your skills, or fancy a guided session Dolomite Training runs courses at all levels.  All instructors are professionally qualified with a wealth of experience in the Peak District. Open courses are bookable online and they offer 1:1 coaching and cater for group bookings. Darley House guests get £20 off bookings for groups of 4 or more.

The poster for Eroica Brittania Festival 16 - 18 June 2017

There is two wheeled fun and exercise to be had for all and for real lovers of all things bike-related, a trip to the famous Eroica Festival is a must too. Visitors can explore the vintage stalls and watch the world famous pre-1987 bikes ridden by thousands of cyclists in vintage clothes.

If you are looking for a base for your cycling adventures in the Peak District, Darley House is perfectly situated. We understand how precious your bikes can be too so if you're bringing your own, you are most welcome to store them in the entrance hall for safe-keeping.  For more information and availability visit our website