Monday, 12 March 2012

A piece of heaven in the Peak District

Last weekend 'P' and I took a trip to Hartington in the Peak District for a little weekend break.  The kids and dog were unceremoniously dropped off at Mom-in-laws and we headed off for a weekend of walking and relaxation.  Although we only live 90 minutes away this was the first time either 'P' or myself had visited the Peak District, but now we've been we can't wait to go back.

We arrived in the small village of Hartington around 7.30pm on the Friday evening.  The Charles Cotton Hotel where we'd chosen to stay looked very welcoming and we thought the lanterns that had been lit and scattered on the outdoor tables was a lovely touch.  The reception staff were very friendly and we were shown to our room which was small but clean and comfortable.

We ate in the bistro, just off the bar area, on both nights and the food was to die for, both times served promptly and by friendly service staff.  We were also surprised that there was entertainment on both evenings which we didn't expect in a small village hotel.  Friday nights entertainment far outweighed Saturday's though, it has to be said.  After an hour of Alan 'Shakin' Dakin (aka Vic Reeves 'in the style of a club singer') we almost gave up the will to live and retired to our bedroom :).  The bar area is very 'country' and has a super open fire to sit by.  We found that not only were the hotel staff extremely pleasant but also the locals who would pass the time of day whilst propping up the bar.

"'P' and I in the Charles Cotton bar

Breakfast on both mornings was served in 'The Cotton Room' which had a beautiful hand painted mural around the top of the walls depicting a countryside scene.  Once again the food was delish and the lady that served us on both mornings was a treasure.

Saturday unfortunately started off foggy so we had a short stroll around the village and then back to the hotel for cappuccino's and read of the paper.  The village itself is very small with just a couple of general stores, an antique shop, cheese shop (?) and another inn.  Luckily by lunchtime the fog cleared, the sun appeared and we headed off on a circular walk using a map purchased from the hotel.

The walk took us out of the village and onwards to Wolfcote and Beresford Dale which was very scenic and great for photographs.  Lots of little bridges over the River Dove and many unusual rock formations jutting out from the landscape.  Being fairly early in the season it wasn't too busy either so all in all we had a lovely peaceful 5 mile walk.

Circular Walk from HartingtonBridge of the River Dove

Both 'P' and I returned thoroughly relaxed from our weekend in Hartington and have already enquired as to their availability for May so that we can visit again for our wedding anniversary.

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