Matlock Bath is a unique village nestled along the banks of the River Derwent in the Derbyshire Dales, just on the edge of the Peak District National Park. It developed in the 1800s as a spa resort where wealthy Victorians used to visit and take the healing waters. Today the visitors still arrive in their hundreds to enjoy the picturesque scenery, the vibrant atmosphere and the multitude of attractions and events that are on offer all year round.
It is often said that Matlock Bath is like a seaside town without the sea, due to the number of gift shops and amusement arcades that line the ‘front’. Attractions in the village include The Heights of Abraham – a hilltop country park complete with old lead mine, cavern and even a cable car; Gulliver’s Kingdom – a theme park dedicated to the enjoyment of younger children; Masson Mill, part of the historic Derwent Valley Mills where Sir Richard Arkwright Began the Industrial Revolution.For the more energetic amongst you there is a fantastic watersports centre situated on the banks of Carsington Water, about five miles away; where you can enjoy windsurfing, canoeing, sailing and fishing. Carsington Sailing Club also hires out boats by the day for those nautically inclined.
Further afield you will find the beautiful stately homes of Chatsworth House – home of the Duke and Duchess of Devonshire; Haddon Hall – family home of the Manners family since the 1500s and the location for many films and TV dramas including Pride and Prejudice and Jayne Eyre. Just a couple of miles down the road is the picturesque market town of Wirksworth, with its maze of narrow streets and cobbled walkways and venue for the critically acclaimed Wirksworth Arts Festival each September.
For those who enjoy white knuckle rides, the UK’s favourite theme park,Alton Towers, is about 30 minutes away, just on the other side of Ashbourne – home of The Royal Shrovetide Football every Shrove Tuesday and Ash Wednesday.Each autumn Matlock Bath is the venue for the Matlock Bath Illuminations and Venetian Nights – with a parade of Illuminated and decorated boats each Saturday and Sunday during the season plus a programme of entertainment in or near the bandstand in Derwent Gardens each evening as well as cliftop firework displays on three Saturday nights during the event.