This circular walk from Wetton Mill in the Manifold Valley is easy going and flat with a cave to explore at the end. The route has well-surfaced tracks and roads making it perfect for a Peak District pram friendly walk.
The walk starts by crossing the bridge to Wetton Mill and following the track alongside the River Manifold. The second half follows the road on the opposite side of the river back to where you started, passing through a tunnel along the way.
Finish off your walk with a short climb up to Nan Tor cave located up on the hill behind Wetton Mill Tea Rooms. If you visit in the wetter months, the kids will love playing in the shallow river. In the drier months the river disappears underground and re-emerges from a boil hole at Ilam (the boil holes can be seen on our pram friendly Ilam Park walk).
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On all Peak District family walks it’s a good idea to have an Ordnance Survey paper map with you, even if you have your phone on you. For this walk you need the OS Explorer Active Map OL24 (White Peak). It’s also a good opportunity to show young kids the map features and get them started with map reading.
TYPE OF WALK: easy going, well-surfaced paths and roads
PARKING: There is roadside parking close to Wetton Mill but we recommend arriving early as it does get busy – click here to see location on Google Maps on your phone, postcode: DE6 2AG. The small car park at Wetton Mill is for patrons only.
WALK HIGHLIGHTS: Gentle walk along the river, tunnel for the kids, cave to explore at the end, paddling in the river in the wetter months.
HOW LONG DOES IT TAKE: This walk can be done in just over an hour but with extra time for the kids to play at Wetton Mill and a quick climb up to Nan Tor cave, allow up to 2 hours.
ACCESSIBILTY: Pram friendly, flat, well-surfaced paths and roads
TOTAL ASCENT: 133 metres
PUBLIC TOILETS: Public toilets are located here next to the Wetton Mill Tea Rooms. The lovely little tea rooms offer light lunches and a great selection of cakes and drinks.
These directions follow the above OS Map in an anticlockwise direction.
1. With the Wetton Mill roadside parking behind you, turn left and walk 50 metres until you reach the stone bridge to Wetton Mill.
2.Turn left and cross over the bridge. Wetton Mill public toilets and tea rooms are on your right. You can also climb up to Nan Tor cave from here but I would save this exciting part of the walk until the end. Instead, continue on the road that bears to the left.
3. After 200 metres, you’ll reach a farm. Follow the road to the left signposted for Hulme End and walk through the wooden gate. This is a gated track so very little traffic passes along it.
4. Continue along the road for 2 km, passing through another metal gate and ignoring a path on your left that joins onto the track you are walking along.
5. At the end of the track, walk through the gate and turn left onto the road, following the signpost towards Wetton Mill, Butterton and Wetton.
6. Continue along the road for 150 metres, over the bridge and past Swainsley Hall until you reach a turning on your right.
7. Turn right, following the signpost towards Manifold Valley, Wetton Mill and Wetton. Continue for 100 metres, ignoring the turning on your right, until you reach a tunnel.
8. Walk through the tunnel and follow the road for 1.9 km back to where you started.
9. OPTIONAL DETOUR: From Wetton Mill Tea Rooms, there is a path that goes behind the farmhouse building to Nan Tor cave. The path is a short 100-metre climb uphill to the cave and can get muddy in wet weather. It is possible to get a pram or buggy up but it is steep and a little rocky. We found it easier to take it in turns nipping up with the kids.
After your Wetton Mill walk
After a visit to Nam Tor cave, why not visit Wetton Mill Tea Rooms for a light lunch and drink or one of their amazing cakes. If visiting in the wetter months like we did, the kids will love playing in the shallow river by the bridge. In the drier months though, the river disappears.
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Hello! 'Peak District Kids' is the go-to website for parents both visiting and living in the Peak District run by Bakewell-based Mum, Jenny. Find out about the best walks, bike rides, attractions and events for families in the UK's oldest National Park.