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Poppy

Canine Critic

Poppy's first ever trip to the Peak District

Cara, Andy and Poppy 11 October 2018

We’ve been lucky enough to do plenty of exploring around the UK but this was our very first trip to the Peak District and it didn’t disappoint! From breathtaking views to cosy pubs and postcard perfect villages, here’s what we learnt on our very first trip to the Peak District…

Poppy sitting in Elder Cottage

Holiday cottages don’t get much better than Elder Cottage…

We were so happy with our holiday cottage for the weekend, not only was it beautifully decorated and equipped with everything you could possibly think of, it was perfectly located for us to explore the Peak District.  The cottage is finished to such a high standard throughout, with underfloor heating and it even had its own robot vacuum cleaner, Digby!

Poppy visiting Chatsworth Estate

Dogs are welcomed literally everywhere…

I don’t think we came across anywhere all weekend that wasn’t dog-friendly, with some of the really popular tourist attractions welcoming dogs on leads. We spent an afternoon at the stunning Chatsworth House, a beautiful setting to spend a few hours exploring the gardens in all their autumnal glory (and even caught a glimpse of Princess Anne!). We also visited Treak Cliff Cavern, the home of Blue John stone. Poppy hadn’t been in a cave before but was so well behaved in the impressive underground caverns and took it all in her stride.

Poppy visitng Castleton

The views from the top will blow you away…

We were keen to see some of the spectacular scenery that the Peak District is so well known for, so after a visit to Treak Cliff Cavern, we headed for Mam Tor and the Great Ridge walk. It’s a steep climb but once you’re up there the views are simply stunning, then it’s a gentle ridge walk taking in the views before heading back down into the beautiful village of Castleton.

Poppy with a view across Ladybower

We also found a great walk up to Bamford Edge from the village of Bamford. Again, it was a steep one but looking from the top down towards Ladybower Reservoir and the Hope Valley was a real highlight of our trip.

The cafés offer amazing food and huge portions...

We were pretty lucky with the weather over our weekend, but during a Saturday morning downpour we took refuge in the lovely Tilly’s of Castleton for a late breakfast and were met with the biggest list of Welsh rarebit and loose leaf teas we have ever seen. Everything we tried was delicious (and enormous!) and this set us up for the action-packed day ahead. Poppy was more than happy to curl up under the table for a quick nap and save her legs for climbing those peaks!

Poppy relaxing on a sofa

Another of our favourite finds was the Rest Café in Bamford – it’s a unique set up comprising of a café, pub & post office owned collectively by over 300 of the local community. They just love dogs here, and it was great to see a community come together in the way they have in Bamford to cater to both locals and visitors.

They really know how to do a dog-friendly pub…

It was hard to resist all the signs welcoming muddy boots and paws into the cosy pubs in the Peak District. The Manners in Bakewell was an ideal pitstop on our long drive up to the cottage, and we were welcomed by the resident pub dog with dog treats and a hearty lunch.

Another of our other favourites was in the beautiful village of Castleton, nestled in the Hope Valley and about a 20-minute drive from our cottage. The Castle Inn was perfect for a post-walk pint and almost every table in the entire pub had their pooches by their side. The pub had treats on hand and even doggie beer behind the bar!

Poppy relaxing in a local pub

With two dog-friendly pubs within walking distance from our cottage, we wandered down to The Cricket Inn for a delicious meal one evening, where Poppy was welcomed with lots of fuss and a comfy spot by the fire.  The food here was fantastic, and they offer a range of meats cooked ‘on the Bertha’, their special wood-burning oven. Most definitely worth visiting on any Peak District trip.

We really did have the best weekend at Elder Cottage, and completely fell in love with the Peak District and how geared up towards dogs everywhere was. We can’t wait to go back again soon!

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