Lathkill Dale walk is one of the most beautiful Derbyshire Dales in the Peak District. If you love walking through the dales this is an idyllic walk, with plenty of wildlife, dramatic limestone cliffs and a winding river through the dale.
The dale is a National Nature Reserve, home to many species, including Dippers and Water Voles. On the walk, you’ll notice signs asking you to respect the area and ensure you keep both yourself and dogs out of the river.
This 4-mile short walk starts from Monyash along a beautiful path to where the path splits. This circular route then goes via the disused Ricklow Quarry and on a path above Lathkill Dale. As you walk along the edge, you’re treated a quieter path with spectacular views before descending into the dale itself.
A steep decline and you’re walking through Lathkill Dale next to the River Lathkill, a rocky path which winds through the dale, past a weir then on to a pretty waterfall. From here you can look up to the cliff edge you walked along at the start. And finally, you’re out back to the path to the car park.
Please note as the walk takes you along the cliff path it may not be suitable for children – for a child friendly route check out Peak District Kids.
Here you will find details on how to get to the start of the walk at Monyash, route information, map, GPX file, plus a detailed step by step guide of the walk.
Let me know in the comments if you’ve done this Lathkill Dale walk and what you think!
Lathkill Dale from Monyash
Lathkill Dale walk mapClick for online map
Walk start point
Start grid reference: SK 15735 66454
Car parking address: Lathkill Dale parking, Church St, Monyash, Bakewell, DE45 1JH – Google maps
This is a small village car park (donations accepted), enough space for about 4 cars, but on the road there is a layby directly opposite, where most people park instead.
The High Peak bus service did run a bus 58 to Chatsworth House via Monyash, but it’s currently not running. Check here for latest information.
Facilities on the walk
There are community toilets available at the start of the walk at Monyash; however, the majority of times I’ve done this hike they have been closed.
Other useful information
This walk includes a section near cliff edges so may not be suitable as a walk with young children.
Also, please respect that Lathkill Dale is a Nature Reserve and has protected species therefore, please follow the signs and make sure both you and your dog stays out of the river.
Lathkill Dale is a popular place to visit so although the first part of the walk is quieter, the section through Lathkill Dale may be busier.
Please keep the Peak District beautiful and take all rubbish home to dispose of. Picnic are very welcome but no disposal BBQs due to high fire risk. Thanks
Peak District weather
Check the weather for your walk location in the dales
- BBC Weather for Monyash
- Met Office weather for the Peak District
- Met Office weather for Ravenstor YHA (closest location)
Ordnance Survey walk map
The map required for this walk is the Ordnance Survey OL24 – Peak District (White Peak Area). Check prices here with Ordnance Survey or Amazon. If you’re hiking in all weathers the Active OS maps are pretty good to have.
And don’t forget your compass, I recommend the Silva Expedition compass
Lathkill Dale walk route
Stage 1 – Monyash to Lathkill Dale
Distance: 2.2 miles/3.6 km
Grid reference SK 15743 66451
From the small car park, go through the gate and follow the grassy track. Go though the next two gates then just before you reach the third, take the narrow footpath on your left heading uphill (photo below). Walk along the narrow path next to the fence, then head uphill to the small signpost next to the tree.
Follow the path back down into Ricklow Dale, going through the gate and turning right. Walk along here, through a gap in a dry stone wall and continue along the path as it leads towards the limestone cliff edge staying high above the dale.
Next go over a wooden stile, the views of Lathkill Dale really open up and you have stunning views of the dale. As you walk along, the path splits, a higher or lower route, they join back up so pick either option.
Go over the next stile, on the right there’s a stone path leading down (see shorter options below). But on this walk, ignore the downhill path and continue walking along the narrow path leading along the edge. You’ll go through some trees, over another three stiles, then finally, it’s a steep path down to Lathkill Dale.
Stage 2 – Lathkill Dale to Monyash
Distance: 2.1 mile/3.4 km
Grid reference SK 18328 65993
Once you’ve descended, turn right following the path as it declines towards the River Lathkill. Once you reach the river, there’s a pretty weir with an old millstone on the ground. Turn right and walk along the rocky path, you’ll soon reach the River Lathkill waterfall.
Please remember no padding for you or your dog (I know it looks tempting!) to protect the wildlife.
Keep walking along Lathkill Dale, following the river, you then go over a small stone stile/gap in the wall. Walk along the rocky path, through the trees and another gate. Then past a small footbridge, a pretty place to stop for a picnic and admire the views.
Follow the footpath, during summer months the river mostly drys up along this section but after heavy rain some sections of the path can flood. On your right you’ll come across a small cave, which is a source of the river in wetter months!
Keep heading along the rocky footpath, through another stile/gap in the wall, then through a tricky rocky section (see photo above) before it brings you to a gate and now you’re back on the route you began on. Simply keep walking and you’ll reach the Lathkill Dale parking area.
Ask me questions about Lathkill Dale in the comments below.
Other options for this walk
Shorten the walk
Looking for a shorter route? As referenced in stage 1 instructions you can descend sooner on the stone path (see photo below) and loop back, you do miss the waterfall if you do this route.
Extend the walk
Alternatively, if you want to extend the walk instead of turning right at the River Lathkill you can add up to another 4 miles/6 km to you walk by doing an out and back walk along the remainder of Lathkill Dale.
More walks in the Peak District
Love the Derbyshire walks in the Peak District? You might like these circular walks.
- Alstonefield Walk (Via Milldale + Dovedale) | 7-Mile Route
- Bradford Dale Short Walk Near Youlgreave | 5-Mile Route
- Wolfscote Dale + Biggin Dale Walk From Hartington | 5-Mile Route
Or check out all our Peak District walking routes here
Peak District charity patches
Peak District Walks have now launched their charity iron-on embroidered patch raising funds for the Edale Mountain Rescue Team (charity no. 1138626) - one of the busiest mountain rescue teams in the UK.
Order our Mam Tor charity patch now or our latest Kinder Scout patch. Please visit our shop below. If you'd like to know when new designs are created, join our mailing list here to be notified.
More information about the charity project here.
Need more help planning your Peak District trip?
More information on the Peak District, including transport options, where to stay + other useful resources.
Check out the 7 YHAs in the Peak District and find the best walks direct from your accommodation.
Find out what maps you will need for your trip here.
FREE beginner's hiking eBook. (Coming soon - request a copy here).
*NEW* Read our useful guides on hiking tips here.
Visit our hiking recommendations page, (footwear, clothes + kit).
Or get in touch and I will help as best I can :).
Please note 'Peak District Walks' accepts no liability through any injuries or accidents that may result from walking our routes. We always recommend you wear appropriate footwear to avoid injuries and to take a paper map and compass on your walks. Read more here.