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What's On: Things to do this summer in the Peak District & Derbyshire

There's always so much to do in the Peak District & Derbyshire, this summer is no exception. Read on to discover some of our highlights.

Summer of Play at Calke Abbey

Start your summer adventures at Calke Abbey and discover a world of play across the parkland and gardens. There’s a Tramway Trail to cycle along, the Garden of Imagination to explore and old fashioned games to play in the Stableyard. Activities run all summer from Saturday the 8th July.

Calke Abbey 1

Discover ‘Fantastic Happenings’ at the Heights

This is the year of ‘Fantastic Happenings’ at The Heights of Abraham in Matlock Bath. Take a cable car ride to the clifftop country park and discover live music, theatre and engaging living history actors. Underground, there are two show caverns to explore, whilst above ground there are numerous viewpoints, scenic playgrounds, a restaurant, cafe and exhibitions.

Heights Fantastic Happenings

Fun on the Farm

Matlock Farm Park has a whole host of fun activities happening this summer – visit their website for details. Highlights include a Jurassic Fun Day on the 23rd July, starring Rita the T-Rex; Superhero Fun Day on the 13th August, with special superhero guests and The Peak District Highland Games is back on the 27th August, pre-booking is recommended for this popular event.

Matlock Farm Park 1

Bakewell Country Festival – 16 July

Bakewell Country Festival is run by Bakewell Agricultural & Horticultural Society, this exciting family day out combines an exciting mix of traditional agricultural elements with family activities, entertainment, food, drink, shopping and more.

Bakewell country festival

Buxton Festival 6 – 23 July

Buxton’s summer celebration of opera, music and books boasts a striking line-up for 2023. There’s a new musical based on Buxton’s pioneering feminist Vera Brittain, three new opera productions, a jazz line-up including Grammy award winner Wynton Marsalis, a concerts programme featuring renowned violinist Nicola Benedetti, and literary speakers including Sir David Hare, Isabella Tree and Gary Younge.
The Festival Fringe, one of the UK’s largest open access arts festivals and runs from July 5 to 23. Buxton International Festival is a great start to the summer for art and music lovers.

Buxton Festival 1

Bustler – 6 weeks of summer

Summer means Bustler will be back week after week with everything from street food & cocktails to giveaways & kids entertainment. Open every week Thurs - Sun from June 22nd - July 30th. Live bands, DJ's in the yard, Karaoke booth, silent disco, Happy Hours, frozen cocktails, kids entertainment, Craft beers, giveaways, arcades & much more.

Bustler 1

Derby Caribbean Carnival - 16 July

This annual event brings positive vibes to everyone through creative art and dance. Street performances from over 300 troupes from Derby and out of town will take to the streets to perform. A family fun day in Derby Market Place & Osmaston Park with food, entertainment and arts & craft stalls.

Caribbean Carnival

Darley Park Weekender 25 - 27 August

Scenic Darley Park will again host a weekend of music over the bank holiday. The new ‘Ultimate 90s’ event features Peter Andre, East 17, Liberty X and Five, whilst the 80s Mix Tape stars DJ Martin Kemp, Hue and Cry and ABC. The Darley Park Concert will round off the weekend with Derby’s annual summer highlight of classical music and fireworks. Book tickets online.

Darley Park 1

Medieval fun at Bolsover Castle

A whole host of exciting events at Bolsover Castle this summer. Witness expert horsemen in flamboyant 17th century costume, training for art and battle to baroque music in the spectacular surroundings of the Riding School; see the castle under attack in 'Siege!'or experience the exhilarating spectacle of speed and skill as four legendary knights compete for honour and glory in the Grand Medieval Joust. See the website for dates and more details.

Bolsover 1

Cromford Mills Adventure Weekend 26 - 28 August

Cromford Mills Adventure Weekend is filled with action-packed activities to inspire us to go outdoors and try something new! Organised in partnership with Peak Paddle, the weekend is sure to get your adrenaline pumping with canoeing, climbing, biking and more. Complete with a host of local adventure specialists, stalls and displays – the weekend is sure to offer adventure this August!


Dog Lovers Festival 4 - 6 August

This amazing festival is a must for dog lovers. It takes place on the first weekend of August in the 362 acre grounds of Elvaston Castle. The Dog Lovers stage has some of the UK’s best tribute bands performing across the weekend hosted by a Dog Lovers compere, so as the sun goes down, you can relax in the jaw dropping surroundings of the Country Park.

Dog festival

Chatsworth Country Fair 1 - 3 September

One of Britain’s most spectacular annual outdoor events, held in the 1000-acre Chatsworth parkland, delivers three action-packed days of thrilling Grand Ring entertainment, inspirational cooking masterclasses, countryside crafts and plenty of interactive activities. All this plus a vintage fun fair, children’s climbing wall, bungee trampoline and much more. Book tickets online.

Chatsworth CF

Discover Chesterfield this summer

Make memories with family and friends this summer in Chesterfield. Families can look forward to a fantastic line-up of events coming to the town, with the return of annual favourites. Experience events including Chesterfield Peddler Market, Chesterfield Food & Drink Festival, Chesterfield Children’s Festival, Eat in the Park and Medieval Fun Day.

Chesterfield 1

Well Dressings

Nothing says ‘summer’ like these beautiful handmade works of art dotted around local towns and villages. Highlights include Chapel-en-le-Frith July 1-8; Buxton July 2-9; Eyam August 26-September 1; and Chesterfield September 9-17. For full details visit our Well Dressing web page.

Well Dressing 2

Find your inner Pirate this summer

The Tropical Butterfly House Wildlife Park has taken to the shimmering seven seas to bring families some swashbucklin’ fun.

Join in everyday Saturday with some Swashbucklin’ fun. Kids are encouraged to come in their favourite pirate or mermaid dress up and show their swagger to create some legendary selfies with spot prizes for the best fancy dress.

Tropical Butterfly House

Have an Udderly Spectacular Summer at Bluebell Dairy Farm Park

This summer don’t sweat about how to keep the family entertained, with the return of Bluebell Dairy’s Summer Passes you can have unlimited access to a fun-filled, affordable day out for the whole family at Bluebell Dairy

For just £20 per person, the Summer Pass offers unlimited visits to the farm park valid between 22nd of July to 3rd of September 2023, plus 10% off food and drink in the café and Ice Cream Parlour for those looking to sample the luxury artisan ice-cream which is produced on the farm.


Stone Age fun at Creswell Crags

There is plenty of pre-historic fun to be had at Creswell Crags this summer why not go on a Stone Age Safari or try your hand at pond dipping, or you could try to build an Ice Age shelter, discover Ice Age fashion with a Stone Age Jewellery Making Workshop or hunt for Minibeasts in the Meadow and explore the different ecosystems as you go.

The Summer Holiday Activities run every day from Monday 24th July to Sunday 3rd September. For details of the different themed weeks, times, prices and booking information visit

Creswell 1

Outdoor Cinema – you’re spoilt for choice

Sit back relax and enjoy your favourite movie in some stunning surroundings this summer.

Adventure Cinema at Calke Abbey
Adventure Cinema at Hardwick Hall
Film night at Tittesworth Water
Film night at Carsington Water
Derby QUAD Summer Nights outdoor film festival

Cinema 1

With so much happening this summer you may want to stay longer. Check out our latest offers and last minute deals and book yourself a short break here in the Peak District & Derbyshire.


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