01694 723600 info@secrethillswalking.co.uk

Derbyshire – Gritstone Edges and Valleys of the Dark Peak

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Why Book With Us?

  • Value for Money
  • Personal Service
  • Hand-picked Tours & Activities
  • No single supplement (UK only)
  • Flights from local airports (Europe only)

Make an Enquiry

Do not hesitate to contact us. We are an expert team and we are always happy to talk to you.


01694 723600

You matter to us & we promise to provide you with a superb walking & social holiday, tailored specifically to your needs. We provide walking holidays for walkers & as walkers ourselves, we appreciate & understand the requirements of a walking holiday.

Dramatic Gritstone Edges and gently sloping escarpments dominate this incredible part of Derbyshire. Lower down, the River Derwent cuts through the limestone, and provides wonderful riverside walking. Our guided walking for solos programme is designed to give the walker the best of this Dark Peak country – and we have chosen some fabulous walks for you.

Our unique speciality is solos and singles guided walking in magnificent locations in the UK and Europe. We have an extra speciality in that we also design bespoke holidays for special groups.

  • Five Days
  • Refund guarantee
  • Expert Tour Guides
  • Four Nights
  • Location: Derbyshire - The White Peak
What you get on a Secret Hills Break
  • Hotel bed and breakfast– en suite four nights 
  • Lunch- except first day
  • Sole Occupancy
  • Personal service
  • Expert guiding- friendly, local guides that know the area superbly well
  • Transport to walks start and finish as needed
  • Flexibility
  • No single supplement
  • A social, relaxed approach
  • Full joining details prior to your holiday
  • Our administration support from the point of booking to you joining the holiday
  • Not included – Evening dinner

Hotel and Meals

Our base for this holiday is the northern edge of the Derbyshire Dales. We stay at the Plough Inn, close to Hathersage village. Solos and Singles Guided walking in Derbyshire's Peak District

Accommodation is twin en suite rooms – no sharing. Rooms have flat screen TVs as well as tea / coffee making facilities.

We eat evening dinner in the hotel’s restaurant – on this holiday we exclude the price of evening dinner from the total price, allowing you make your own choice of how many courses and choice of an extensive menu. Dress code is smart casual

We have lunch at one of the this area lovely country pubs, Walking starts at 9.30 am, and we generally finish for that welcome cuppa at 4.30 pm. This will give you plenty of time to get ready for dinner.

Great reasons to join us

There are other walking holiday companies that cover the countryside but we believe we offer the best value for many reasons….

  • We specialise in organising guided walking holidays for singles and solo travellers
  • We are a small friendly company
  • We have a loyal customer base who return again and again (so we must be doing something right) – read our testimonials page on the website
  • We offer a lot of flexibility – you can stay extra nights which we are happy to organise for you. We are also very flexible on the walks we provide, adapting to suit walkers and weather conditions
  • Our walk leading is second to none. Unlike some other large Walking Companies, we use LOCAL leaders who live in the area and who love their surroundings. They have expert knowledge of everything you need to know to make an area come alive.
  • You are safe in our hands – our guides are experts, fully qualified in first aid. Also, because of their local knowledge of the hills, they can respond to any situation that might for example demand cutting short a route. They don’t need to consult maps – they know the hills intimately.
  • Our leaders are all easy-going, genuinely sociable people who want to ensure that you have the best time you can with the rest of the group. They make the weekend fun by engaging with all members of a group, and ensuring that everyone feels part of the group experience.
  • We give great value for money. Because we recognise that lots of walkers holiday on their own, we have negotiated no single supplement deals with all our hotels to ensure the best possible deal.
  • We always use good hotels.
  • We have smaller groups than some of the larger walking companies because we believe the social experience is much better in a smaller group. People can talk to everyone, especially at dinner where you can all sit at one table in a small group. Our numbers vary from holiday to holiday but an average group size would be 8-12.


Getting to the Hathersage

By train – There is a station some half a mile away at Hathersage. Taxis readily available .See www.nationalrail.co.uk

By car – the post code for your Sat Nav is S32 1BA for the Plough Inn.  

Full detailed journey instruction will be sent with your Joining Details prior to the holiday.


Solo and Singles Guided walking in DerbyshireThis  holiday starts  on Sunday afternoon, our first walk starts at 2.30pm, a roughly two hour “get to know you” walk, with a cuppa at the end.  If you cannot make that walk, then we meet on Sunday evening, at 7.00 pm, for dinner and a discussion on what we are doing during the week.  

We then walk on Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday and finish on Thursday at approximately 4.30pm.

Over the following four  days, the walks will cover  9 to 10 miles taking in an area around Hathersage and Castleton centred around the Edges and Valleys of this lovely walking area.

Meet New Friends

Its all about meeting new friends. Each holiday is designed to be a friendly, relaxed and stress free occasion. Talking is as important as walking on Secrethills Walking Holidays. We don’t go in for discos, we may use an event that is taking place in the area we are in to boost the weekends activities – but its good, old fashioned chat that makes our short breaks successful.

“Make new friends that turn into old friends” – that’s our motto.

You might be surprised by what fun you’ll have with people who are older or younger than you during a holiday with us, and that’s exactly the sort of atmosphere we encourage; people find it very rewarding. It doesn’t matter what your reasons for traveling with us are, we’ve had people who are single, divorced or widowed, people who have partners that are unable to travel, and people who can’t holiday with their friends anymore as they’ve all got married themselves. There are people who want to make friends, see sights, and experience something completely new. Whatever your reason, we’ll welcome you with open arms and our friendly hosts will help you to get the most out of your holiday.

Don’t worry if this is the first time you have ventured to join a group holiday – its always a bit daunting – but we will look after you and ensure that you get used to being amongst friends again. Trust us to to get you back into the swing of things.

Oh – by the way – its not a dating agency – over the years we have had people meet and fall in love – but that’s just chance. Our aim is that you make like minded friends – just relax and enjoy.

Just arrive and enjoy.

How to Book

To reserve a place on any of our holidays, please follow these simple instructions.

Reserve online  – once you have chosen your holiday, click on Proceed Booking and complete the online form. If you have difficulty reserving online, please  contact us (tel: 01694 723600, email: info@secrethillswalking.co.uk) and we will assist you to complete your booking.


Please note we cannot take credit/debit card details over the phone. You may pay by the following methods when you book online…

  • Paypal – if you have a Paypal account, simply click on the link to the Paypal website.
  • Credit / Debit card – we use Paypal to host our credit/debit cards facility because it is a very secure system. So if you want to pay with a card, simply click on this option which will take you to our page on the PayPal website. Check in there as a “Guest” to enable your card payment. You do not need to have a Paypal account for this transaction.
  • We will also accept a Bank Transfer – you will find our account details on the booking form.
  • Finally, we will also accept a cheque payable to Secret Hills Walking Holidays and sent to: Secret Hills Walking Holidays, 35 Sandford Avenue, Church Stretton, Shropshire, SY6 6BH

Please note than an initial deposit is required with each booking regardless of which payment method you choose. Your booking will be accepted when your payment (deposit or full balance) is received. Note – if you are reserving a holiday within a month of the start date then the full amount is due immediately and no deposit should be paid.

It is important that you read the terms and conditions before you sign the booking form.

Note – if you are reserving a holiday within a month of the start date then the full amount is due immediately and no deposit should be paid.

Sample Walks

We choose from many walks in the area, dependent on your ability and the prevailing weather. These are samples.

Hathersage and Stanage Edge

This lovely walk takes you out of the village and up to the gritstone heights of Stanage Edge, with awe-inspiring views.  You then descend via Carhead Rocks and back into the village, along very pretty country lanes. 

Hathersage and Grindleford

This route starts and ends in Hathersage, following the River Derwent to the pretty village of Grindleford, taking in beautiful countryside along the way.  It is relatively flat and gentle with only a few small hills, and for the most part uses well-made paths and lanes. Solos and Singles Guided walking in Derbyshire's Peak District

Hathersage and the Longshaw Estate

This lovely walk is a little challenging in places but the views are definitely well worth the effort.  The route starts and ends in the village, meanders along the River Derwent to Grindleford,  onwards and upwards on to Froggatt Edge, through parts of the National Trust Longshaw Estate, over to Surprise View, and back down into Hathersage.

Stanage Edge and Higgar Tor

This walk starts takes in the dramatic gritstone heights of Stanage Edge and Higger Tor.  It is climbs to the edges but offers some of the finest views in the Dark Peak and the stunning scenery and variety of terrain more than rewards the effort.



Grades and Difficulty

We walk at a steady pace and don’t rush, there’s too much to see and admire. Timing can change, depending on weather conditions, or the walking ability of the group, although we try to maintain our estimated arrival time at pubs, and returns to the hotel.

During the walks, we use footpaths and bridleways, although we may have to walk short distances on country lanes. Derbyshire has a good selection of stiles that allow passage over the beautiful dry-stone walls, and are of various shapes and sizes. Grades are moderate and we walk at a pace designed to allow you to enjoy the walk, and maybe snap the occasional photograph. As always, we recommend suitable walking footwear, preferably boots, as the terrain can be very varied.


Solos and Singles Guided walking in DerbyshireBeautiful Hathersage – The Gem of the Dark Peak

Situated in the spectacular Hope Valley and surrounded on all sides by wooded hillsides and magnificent gritstone edges, the pretty village of Hathersage is an absolute gem! With beautiful old stone buildings lining the streets, and a collection of vibrant shops, cafés, pubs and restaurants, it’s no wonder that Hathersage is one of the most popular villages in this part of the Peak District National Park.

Particularly popular with lovers of outdoor activities.  It’s a great base for exploring Stanage Edge, a gritstone escarpment just north of the village that stretches for almost 4 miles and is famous as a location for climbing.  The many moorland and fell trails that start from the edge of the village also offer wonderful routes for running, cycling and hiking

A Rich History

The village has a rich and interesting history. Evidence points to human occupation below Stanage Edge since the Mesolithic or Middle Stone Age, and Bronze Age field systems and a burial cairn can still be seen in the area around Dennis Knoll. Hathersage was already an established settlement at the time of its recording in the Domesday Book of 1086.  Parts of the beautiful village church of St Michael and All Angels date from the late 1300s.

Although it’s now surrounded by fresh, clean air, Hathersage was once a dusty, smoky place. In 1750 a man called Henry Cocker opened the first mill here, and by the early 19th Century there were no fewer than five mills in this little village. The mills were renowned for making pins, needles and wire, primarily for the textile industries.

Although water was initially used to power the mills, by the mid 19th Century they were using steam, so at that time Hathersage was often cloaked in smoke. The conditions for the workers in the mills were poor. The needles were sharpened on rotating gritstone wheels, and the accounts of the time refer to the air in the mills being thick with gritstone and steel dust. This led to inevitable health problems for the workers, many of them children, and the average life expectancy for a mill worker was only 30 years.Solos and Singles Guided walking in Derbyshire

Famous Connections

Hathersage has a number of famous connections too. In the village churchyard visitors can see the reputed grave of Little John, one of Robin Hood’s Merry Men, and supposedly once a resident of Hathersage. There are a number of other connections with Robin Hood in the surrounding area, including Robin Hood’s Cave on Stanage Edge, Robin Hood’s Stoop on Offerton Moor, Robin Hood’s Cross on Abney Moor, and Hood Brook running out of the village, suggesting that there have long been local links to this popular folk hero.

Hathersage also has strong connections with Charlotte Bronte, who stayed at the vicarage in the village in 1845.  Many of the locations in her most famous novel ‘Jane Eyre’ were based on locations in and around Hathersage. Hathersage itself is mentioned in the book as the village of Morton, and The George Hotel in Hathersage was also referred to directly as ‘The George Inn’ in the novel. Mr Rochester’s ‘Thornfield Hall’ is widely accepted to be North Lees Hall, on the outskirts of the village.



3 Reviews
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Bev Ferri

Solo Traveller

Keith couldn’t have been more helpful and sensitive to people’s needs. He had great local knowledge and always explained where we were with discreet ‘look at the view’ rests when I was dying during the ascents. We even had map reading training on request! I had a fab time with a lovely group of people

Keith had clearly put a lot of time into preparing the varied and beautiful walks. Very good value for money in a lovely area.

July 13, 2017

Thomas Block

Solo Traveller

This was my first walking holiday, and my first solo non-business trip so I had some trepidation but no worries in the end.  I thought I’d prefer a group to walking by myself and this walk proved my judgement right.

July 13, 2017

Mike Keats

Solo Traveller

Just to say how much I enjoyed the weekend walking in Derbyshire. Despite the weather, we had two superb walks on the Saturday and Sunday taking in a good mix of the beautiful countryside. I particularly enjoyed the fact that we kept off the main tourist spots and were able to enjoy the open space, views and peace of the area.

Particular thanks to Keith for leading our group. His friendliness, knowledge and being attentive to our needs was excellent – well done! I shall certainly be booking another weekend walking in the UK with Secret Hills!

July 13, 2017