Liam Hallam is a sports science graduate. He is also a keen cyclist and a lover of the Derbyshire Dales and Peak District.
Coffee, Cake and a Bike Ride
There’s no denying that the county of Derbyshire is home to some of Britain’s best walking and cycling. It’s also true that there is an abundance of very good cafes in Derbyshire. Ranging from the Peak District to the Derwent Valley, there’s somewhere for all, from isolated, scenic cafes with views of the impressive Dales to tough climbs rewarded with coffee nearby.
Here’s a list of the best cafes in Derbyshire.
Where to Find Derbyshire's Best Cafes
Fuel in Holloway
A recent addition to the hills above the bustling town of Matlock is Fuel in the village of Holloway. With a tough climb up from the Derwent Valley via Cromford, your breakfast will be well deserved if you’re cycling in. One of the more modern cafes in the area, it serves up impressive 200 Degrees Coffee.
You'll see stunning views from the road to the Derwent Valley, and walkers have the option of cutting through the nearby Crich Tramway museum for a little nostalgia.
Fuel works well for cyclists as it's around 20 miles back to Nottingham after riding into the Peak District. It's also only around 15 miles back to Mansfield.
Hassop Station Cafe on the Monsal Trail
This cafe is situated along the Monsal Trail near Bakewell, which makes great use of the old railway line to Bakewell. Hassop Station offers a fantastic option for a cafe stop on a day out with the family on a route that avoids much of the tough climbing in the area.
It's a bright and spacious cafe with plenty of seating and a very good selection of the best cakes the area has to offer. There's also cycle hire on site should you require and a bookshop to explore.
The multi-user Monsal Trail is also a great walk from Bakewell and back for a well-earned tart or pudding. For the more adventurous, there's a tough but rewarding climb up to the nearby Longstone Edge for a fabulous vista back towards town.
There's a plethora of bridleways and permissive paths in the area to cater for mountain bikers too. Longstone edge has some tough climbs to really earn your cake.
Beetroot Tree at Mercia Marina
A favourite spot for local cyclists to head away from the relentless hills of the Peak District and Derbyshire Dales is Mercia Marina—especially in summer when there's the want to be beside the water despite being arguably the furthest from the seaside of anywhere in the United Kingdom.
Mercia Marina's Beetroot Tree Cafe is the kind of place you could easily take your mum for a spot of lunch even if she's the fussiest person on the face of the earth. It's relaxed, offers great produce, and sits away from the hustle of Derby City centre.
Vegan-Friendly Grasshopper Cafe in Hope
There is a great selection of cafes for cyclists in Hope and the Hope Valley. Castleton seems to attract the tourists, but Hope seems to draw in the more active visitor to the Peak District with excellent walking and world-class Mountain Biking nearby.
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Formerly the Woodbine Cafe, Grasshopper is a very nice spot, vegan friendly with a great selection of cakes and winter warmers for pre-walk warming or post-ride stories. Out the back are bike racks and some outdoor seating, but during winter it's nice and toasty inside. You'll barely want to venture back out into the cold.
Hope: The Peak District Mountain Bike Mecca
The Hope Valley area of the Peak District encompasses some of the finest mountain biking in the UK with an extensive network of bridleways heading North onto the gritstone of the Dark Peak and South onto the Limestone of the White Peak. The honeypot village of Hope isn't quite the tourist trap of nearby Castleton, but a serious mountain biker's proverbial wet dream.
With plenty of free on-street parking and pretty easy access from Sheffield, Hope is also the home of 18Bikes for any last-minute supplies or post-ride repairs. You also have easy access to tough yet rewarding riding on the likes of the Beast and infamous Ladybower Loop, which is a must-ride Peak District classic (see video below).
High Nelly's in Tideswell
According to TripAdvisor, High Nelly's is the best cafe in the Peak District. With a TripAdvisor Certificate of Excellence, High Nelly's in Tideswell is well worth a visit.
With great breakfasts and fantastic cakes, there's something for everyone.
Hobbs Cafe in Monsal Head
One of Derbyshire's most iconic views is looking out into Monsal Dale. The Dale is vast and the views spectacular, and Hobbs Cafe sits high above Monsal Head Viaduct looking over it all.
The road climb up from Monsal Dale is tough, but you'll be rewarded at the top!
The Cafe is also at the finish line of the famous Monsal Hill Climb cycling event held every October where spectators line the roads in a Tour De France Alpine style urging cyclists to the top as they leave everything by the roadside.
Watermark Cafe at Carsington Water
There's a good selection of routes out to Carsington Water and the Watermark Cafe is a big favourite with cyclists heading out to the area South of the Peak District. It's also a great spot for a family cycle ride with a rout of around 7 miles around the reservoir perimeter suitable for young riders and old as well as walkers too.
There's more info at the Visit Carsington website.
Where's Your Favourite Cafe in Derbyshire and the Peak District?
There's a great selection across the county, so we'd love to hear your favourite picks in the comments section at the bottom of the page.
Best Gravel Cycling in the Peak District?
© 2019 Liam Hallam