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Outdoors Peak District

Hidden among the southern hills of the Pennines lie ancient stone villages, stately homes, and rocky outcrops attracting cavers, walkers and climbers alike.
A view of the Wye Valley from Monsal Head, on the Monsal Trail

Natural wonders

PEAK CAVERN ❶

The limestone sections of the Peak District are riddled with caves and caverns, particularly around Castleton. Peak Cavern is easily reached by a pretty streamside walk from Castleton centre and has the largest natural cave entrance in England, known as the Devil’s Arse. Inside, dramatic limestone formations are lit with fibre-optic cables (devilsarse.com; Castleton; £10.25).

WINNATS PASS & SPEEDWELL CAVERN ❷

Striking Winnats Pass is a collapsed cave system, once a coral reef canyon. Sheer-sided cliffs frame a lovely green valley, footpaths abound, and it’s here that you’ll find the entrance to Speedwell Cavern – a cave reached via an eerie boat ride through flooded tunnels, emerging by a huge subterranean lake (speedwellcavern.co.uk; Castleton; £11, inc Peak Cavern £17).

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Find the complete article and many more in this issue of Lonely Planet - August 2016
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