Car-free guide: A train tour of the Goyt Valley
Just a short hop on the train from Manchester and Sheffield, this picturesque corner of the county is waiting to be discovered.
Journey through beautiful countryside and leave the bright lights of Manchester and Sheffield behind on a visit to this picturesque corner of the county. Lying just a few miles north-west of the famous spa town of Buxton, the Goyt Valley is one of the most beautiful - and lesser-visited - areas of the Peak District. It also has fantastic public transport connections, a wealth of charming towns and villages, fascinating industrial heritage and an abundance of outdoor activities, making it the perfect place to explore without a car!
For train tickets, timetable and more information, click here.
Catch the train to New Mills Central
Set in an area of dramatic natural beauty, New Mills stands above a rocky gorge known as The Torrs, and is the scenic point where the River Sett meets the River Goyt. It also has fantastic transport links, making it the perfect place to explore by bus or rail. New Mills grew from a hamlet based around a 14th century corn mill known as ‘newmylne’ and as the cotton mills developed in the 1780s, the town became known as New Mills. Today, you'll discover a fantastic mix of independent shops, cafes and pubs, a thriving arts scene, a great programme of local events, a unique 'hidden theatre' and recently refurbished mill buildings.
Walk across the Millennium Walkway
On arrival, head straight to New Mills Heritage Centre (next to the bus station) to learn about the town's history and heritage, before heading to the impressive Millenium Walkway to soak up waterside views and explore the town on foot. This innovative 175-yard aerial walkway spans across the river, offering incredible views to Torrs Mill. Afterwards explore Torrs Riverside Park, known as the park ‘under the town’. It's a great place to walk, picnic and learn about the natural and industrial history of the area. The park also links to the Sett Valley Trail, a 2.5 mile trail for walkers, cyclists and horse riders linking New Mills to Hayfield, at the foot of Kinder Scout.
Catch the train to Whaley Bridge
Reached by rail from New Mills Newtown in less than 15 minutes, Whaley Bridge lies at the head of the scenic Peak Forest Canal, with a rich industrial heritage and charming steets to explore. Soak up the area's canal heritage and enjoy a waterside wander on the Peak Forest Canal, which opened in 1800 to transport limestone from the quarries of Derbyshire. The town boasts a range of small, independent shops selling everything from special gifts to fine wine and locally-produced food. There's also a range of friendly pubs, restaurants and cafés mostly located along the main street near the railway station, plus an attractive Memorial Park with play area.
Catch the train to Chapel-en-le-Frith
Just over 10 minutes by train from Whaley Bridge, this rural market town has an unusual name which derives from the French meaning “Chapel in the Forest”. This refers to the building of a lodge or chapel here by the keepers of the Royal Forest of the High Peak in 1225! Today Chapel-en-le-Frith has a range of great local shops, cafes, pubs, restaurants. The summit of Eccles Pike is just 1.5 miles from the town centre and provides a pictursque 360-degree panorama of all the major hills and valleys at the western edge of the Peak District. Alternatively, follow the heritage trail around Chapel and discover Church Brow, a picture-perfect cobbled street with 17th century homes.
Call in at Strines Station
Literary lovers shouldn't miss a visit to Strines Station. It's believed that Edith Nesbit, author of The Railway Children, set her famous book around this scenic station and the railway line between Marple and New Mills. The New Mills ‘Walkers Are Welcome’ Group have produced a leaflet describing an interesting literary trail in the area which features many of the buildings and landscapes that Edith Nesbit would have known.
Catch the train to Buxton
Elegant Buxton has been welcoming visitors to enjoy its natural thermal springs and stunning setting 300 metres above sea level since Roman times. Known then as Aquae Arnemetiae, or the Spa of the Goddess of the Grove, its fortunes are currently reviving thanks to the recent restoration and reopening of its Grade I listed centrepiece, the Crescent.
Discover Buxton's spa heritage
Buxton is deservedly renowned for its Georgian and Victorian architecture - much of it linked with the 5th Duke of Devonshire's ambitions to create a spa town to rival Bath back in the 18th century. Elegant Buxton has been welcoming visitors to enjoy its natural thermal springs and stunning setting 300 metres above sea level since Roman times. Known then as Aquae Arnemetiae, or the Spa of the Goddess of the Grove, its fortunes are currently reviving thanks to the recent restoration and reopening of its Grade I listed centrepiece, the Crescent.
Spend the night at Buxton Crescent Hotel
At the centre of town, just a short walk from the train station, the Ensana Buxton Crescent Hotel & Thermal Spa features fabulous spa facilities that harness the town's famous thermal water, which rises from the earth at a constant temperature of 28 degrees C. A stay at the Buxton Crescent is the perfect opportunity to sleep in a magnificent heritage building, with all the service and amenities of a 5-star hotel. As well as 81 luxury rooms in an historic setting, Buxton Crescent offers traditional hydrotherapy, luxury spa treatments, lifestyle programmes and healthy cuisine, all the five-star amenities that discerning health travellers look for.
Public transport information
New Mills is served by two stations: Central Station on Northern's Manchester – Sheffield “Hope Valley Line” is close to the centre of the town. New Mills Newtown Station lies on the other side of the valley on Northern's Manchester - Buxton Line and is about 1 mile from the town centre.
Whaley Bridge Station lies on the Manchester Piccadilly – Buxton Line operated by Northern. The station is conveniently located in the centre of the town on Market Street near to all the main facilities the town has to offer. Whaley Bridge is also served by several bus services connecting to Stockport, Buxton, Manchester Airport, New Mills, Glossop, Macclesfield and Chapel-en-le-Frith.
Chapel-en-le-Frith station lies on the Manchester Piccadilly – Buxton Line, operated by Northern, and there is plenty of attractive scenery to view through the train windows. The nearest bus stops are half a mile away on Manchester Road offering connections to Buxton, Whaley Bridge, Stockport and Manchester Airport.
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