3 (all year)
1 The Retreat has a stylish blend of rustic charm and boutique luxury that comes together to create a unique self-catering cottage. It's in the Peak District village of Taddington, high up in the White Peak and conveniently close to Ashford-in-the-Water (three miles), Buxton and Bakewell (both 6-miles), and within walking distance (just 400 yards!) of the friendly, family-run Queens Arms pub. The dog-friendly cottage sleeps up to four people in two sumptuous bedrooms that are as perfect for couples and friends as they are for families.
You could not ask for a more perfect Peak District village than Taddington. At over 1,000 feet above sea level, the views are sensational and the opportunities for walkers are endless throughout the limestone dales that surround Taddington. The long-distance Limestone Way passes through the village to give direct access to one of the region's favourite footpaths, and there are also excellent cycling routes with the Monsal Trail being a firm favourite following the disused railway line. Monsal Dale is within easy reach, as are Lathkill Dale and Millers Dale. There's a stunning walk waiting for you whether you want a gentle stroll or a challenging hill climb. The circular walk at Mam Tor in Edale will reward with incredible views, or if flora and fauna is more your thing, stroll through Grin Low Woods at Buxton Country park on your way to Solomon's Temple. Dovedale and Edale are each sixteen miles away and provide yet more walking opportunities with some of the country's finest hill walking including Kinder Scout.
Bakewell is six miles east of the village, or around a 10-minute drive. Its rustic charm is enhanced with a thriving weekly market where over 100 stallholders gather every Monday to sell their wares in the same way their predecessors have since 1330. It's a great place for a meal out, and to pick up some of the local speciality, Bakewell pudding. Six miles west of Taddington is Buxton. It was a leading spa town in Victorian and Georgian times, with its grand architecture lending gravitas. Buxton Crescent rivals Bath's for elegance, complemented by Buxton Opera House and the building that holds the museum and art gallery. Treat yourself to lunch, shopping and spa treatments that make excellent use of the area's natural spring water.
Local attractions include Derbyshire's most splendid country estate, Chatsworth House, as well as Haddon Hall and Bolsover Castle. Discover the subterranean beauty of Pooles Cavern and scale the Heights of Abraham. Alton Towers is about half an hour's drive from the cottage, so you can plan a holiday full of fun and variety with something to keep everyone happy.
Slightly further afield but still within an hour's drive are Sheffield and Manchester, in fact, pretty much anywhere in the Peak District is within easy reach and within an hour's drive of 1 The Retreat.
Crispin Atkinson joined Independent Cottages in November 2020
1 The Retreat is a traditional Derbyshire stone cottage in a central yet quiet village location. Accommodation is over two levels.
Outside: There is a terrace for enjoying a glass of wine or alfresco meal, along with off-road parking for one vehicle on the drive.
Additional information: Prices include heating, electricity, bed linen, towels, cleaning and a welcome basket of logs. One well behaved standard size dog at an additional charge of £20 (or two by special arrangement).