How to enjoy a Peak District staycation without a car

Many visitors to Buxton assume that they need their own transport to explore the area but as the Festival is situated in the middle of the Peak District there are plenty of ways to see the local sights without a car.

It’s very easy to travel from London to Stockport from London via train. One quick change and you arrive right in the heart of the town after a scenic journey through the hills.

You can spend a week in Buxton during the festival 8-25 July and be fully entertained, but if you want to travel further afield, we’ve shared a couple of ideas for car-free Peak District adventures in our 5-day itinerary.

Note that COVID-19 restrictions may be in operation during this time so do check with travel operators, accommodation providers and restaurants before setting off.

Thursday 8 July

Arrive at Buxton after a relaxing train ride and make your way to your accommodation. Once you’ve settled in, stretch your legs with a gentle stroll around the Pavilion Gardens and have a meal at a local restaurant. Enjoy the opening night of A Little Night Music at the beautiful Buxton Opera House.

Friday 9 July

Start your Friday with a fascinating look at the impact of war at Margaret Macmillan’s talk. After a spot of lunch, fill your afternoon with two recitals, the first from Pelléas Ensemble and the second from Kathryn Stott who will be performing a selection of foot tapping pieces.

Firmly in the dancing mood, take your seat for The Dancing Master in the evening.

Saturday 10 July

Inspired and ready to go, hop on the 442 bus * at Buxton Market Place and travel through the Peak District to the pretty village of Hartington where you’ll find shops, pubs and a lovely duck pond! If you’re feeling energetic then why not follow this Snap the Peaks route to the magical Beresford Dale and Wolfscote Dale? The historic Biggin Hall Hotel and Restaurant is only a short bus ride away and perfect spot for lunch or dinner.


Sunday 11 July

Time to hit the road again, this time to Bakewell. Take the Transpeak bus from the Market Place and travel through the White Peak to this quaint town. Walk by the river, buy a bottle or three from John Hattersley Wines, find out more about Peak District history at the Tudor Bakewell Old House Museum.

Travel back to Buxton in time to see new opera, Dido’s Ghost.

Bakeell Old House Museum

Monday 12 July

It’ll be hard to tear yourself away from Buxton at this point so make sure you see at least one event before you say goodbye to Derbyshire. Tabea Debus and Elizabeth Kenny will be performing a programme title ‘Ohrworm’, which explores how many tunes and dances wormed their way into many  aspects of music-making in 17th and 18th centry Europe.

Bursting with music, enjoy a smooth journey home and make sure you reserve your seats for the 2022 Buxton International Festival!

* Check bus timetables online before travelling to avoid disappointment.