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How to Enjoy Family Days Out in Derbyshire

Taking the family on a trip to Derbyshire? This county has some of the best activities for all ages

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A person sitting on a stone wall by large green fields in Derbyshire, England, UK

Home to a large part of the Peak District National Park, Derbyshire is all about the great outdoors. Full of exciting attractions and adventures in nature, it’s the perfect playground for people of all ages. There's so much to do that the choice could actually be slightly overwhelming, but luckily for you, that's exactly where we come in (you're welcome). Here at Plum Guide, we know a thing or two about making the most of days out, which is why we’ve put together this expert guide just for you. So without further ado, allow us to present to you our favourite family days out in Derbyshire.

Visit Crich Tramway Village

Nestled in the heart of the countryside is a unique attraction that will get tram lovers (yes, there are more of them than you may realise) of all ages excited. Crich Tramway Village is home to the National Tramway Museum where you can step back in time and discover a world of vintage trams. The Great Exhibition Hall is trammed full of treasures & knowledge. In addition to discovering a hundred years of tramway development, you can also watch how the museum staff restore the fleet. The main attraction is the recreated period village, where you can hop onto a tram and ride past original buildings rescued from towns and cities across the UK. This includes Barnett’s Sweet Shop and an ice cream parlour which the kids will no doubt catch sight of - consider this a warning.

Mandarin Orange, Plum Guide home in Derbyshire, UK

Mandarin Orange, Plum Guide home in Derbyshire, UK

Marvel at Bolsover Castle

The best family days out in Derbyshire always involve a castle. Built as a retreat for 17th-century courtiers to entertain and impress, Bolsover Castle is perched on a hilltop with remarkable views over Derbyshire. Saunter through the lavish rooms and admire the carved marble fireplaces, ornately decorated ceilings and vibrant wall paintings. Open up the cabinets to discover Bolsover’s secrets on hosting extravagant parties, or head to the exhibition to learn more on the castle’s architecture, politics and people.

The outside of Bolsover Castle is just as impressive too - walk the walls surrounding the fountain garden and enjoy a show of Cavalier horsemanship between April and September. Younger visitors will stay entertained with a multimedia guide full of games and bite-sized information. They can even dress up in costumes in the theatre room or let loose in the play area. They'll always remember the day they traveled back in time (even if only for a moment).

Lowland Leisures, Plum Guide home in Derbyshire, UK

Lowland Leisures, Plum Guide home in Derbyshire, UK

Take a trip to Bluebell Dairy Farm

A close up of a white sheep at Bluebell Dairy Farm, Derbyshire, England, UK

A close up of a white sheep at Bluebell Dairy Farm, Derbyshire, England, UK

Farm animals and ice cream? We can’t think of a better day out than that. Bluebell Dairy Farm, just outside Derby, specialises in luxury artisan ice cream made from their own cows. The farm has a large play area, as well as a Go Kart track and a tractor course for toddlers. Of course, a farm wouldn't be complete without any animals, so come prepared to meet an array of different creatures. Every morning the farm holds petting and feeding sessions, so you can get up close and personal with the likes of Arthur the giant rabbit. If you're the one who needs feeding, the tea room offers hearty dishes and home baked treats.

King Of The Vale, Plum Guide home in Derbyshire, UK

King Of The Vale, Plum Guide home in Derbyshire, UK

Get adventurous at Poole’s Cavern & Buxton Country Park

If taking your loved ones on an expedition deep underground sounds like one of the greatest family days out in Derbyshire, then you’re in for a treat. Dating back two million years, Poole’s Cavern is a natural limestone cave boasting many bizarre and mysterious formations. Take a guided tour down into the caverns, and don't be confused by the 'unnatural' LED lights - they're to highlight the crystal stalactites and stalagmites (don’t ask us which one’s which). Back up on ground level, spend some time strolling through the woodlands of Buxton Country Park. Make sure to head up Grin Low hill where you’ll find Solomon’s Temple at the summit, a Victorian folly and viewpoint serving extensive views of the Peak District.

The Toadstool, Plum Guide home in Staffordshire, UK

The Toadstool, Plum Guide home in Staffordshire, UK

Treat the family to a day at East Midlands Aeropark

Close up of a propellor on the front of an aeroplane at East Midlands Aeropark, England, UK

Close up of a propellor on the front of an aeroplane at East Midlands Aeropark, England, UK

Have an aviation geek in the family? Perhaps the same person who calls themselves a tram enthusiast? Take them to East Midlands Aeropark and they won’t want anything else for their next five birthdays. Outside, you can stroll around the aeropark and get familiar with the 27 complete air frames on display. There are also two viewing areas which give you unrestricted views of the planes coming and leaving the nearby East Midlands Airport. Inside the hangar are several aircraft engines and other airline components. If you really want to spoil someone, the aeropark has special events throughout the year where you can actually get inside the cockpits of the aircraft. Disclaimer: no, they won’t let you take off. You need a licence for that.

Admire the Heights of Abraham

You can’t visit Derbyshire and miss the Heights of Abraham off your itinerary. We don’t make the rules. The journey there is an adventure in itself - take a cable car ride over the Derwent Valley and marvel at the unforgettable views of the Peak District. This 60 acre hilltop park was originally a lead mining site from the 1700s. Today, it’s a popular attraction with plenty of things to do and see. Take a guided tour into the Great Masson Cavern, and the Rutland Cavern & Nestus Mine, where you can learn what it was like to be a miner here (spoiler, it wasn’t great). Thankfully, you’re not obliged to put in a back-breaking 12 hour shift in the darkness. Back up top, there are exhibitions, a sculpture trail, a butterfly and nature trail, viewing platforms and a restaurant with picnic spots. So it's definitely fair to say that the whole family will find something here to keep them busy for hours.

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