Matlock Bath Attractions

A mile down the river from Matlock, Matlock Bath is an inland seaside resort and is often called ‘Derbyshire on Sea.’ It is a favourite Sunday haunt for the motor biking fraternity and the Promenade is packed full of shiny polished motorbikes every weekend. Matlock Bath attractions make it a popular place to visit!

Following the road round the picturesque Artist’s Corner you will be confronted by the towering cliffs of High Tor, usually packed full with climbers each weekend and the pretty impressive sight of the cable cars en route to the Heights of Abraham on the opposite side of the gorge. The river is a playground for boaters and canoeists and the Main Street of Matlock Bath is its Promenade, packed full with gift shops, fish and chip shops and amusement arcades with even its own annual illuminations festival, Blackpool style.

Matlock Bath Aquarium is fed by one of the thermal springs, and there are huge tanks displaying British and tropical freshwater species, in what used to be the Matlock Bath Hydro. It also features a petrifying well, where Victorian day trippers left objects, which gradually turned to stone. The Hologram Gallery is definitely worth a visit featuring a collection of 3-D pictures produced by laser technology. Be baffled at how it all works and delight the children, with the gemstone and fossil collection too.

Gulliver’s Kingdom is a family theme park high up on the hillside, aimed at younger children. There are fairground rides, roller coasters, fantasy attractions and log flume rides. There are lots of places to grab a burger and chips.

Peak District Mining Museum is in Matlock Bath’s Pavilion. It offers a peek into the world of the miner and there are climbing shafts, working models, the tunnel and the slideshow, which offers a practical look at lead mining. Visitors can also explore the Temple Mine for a first-hand experience of the industry as well.

Heights of Abraham was once a pleasure garden for the Regency period, which incorporates a variety of attractions in over 60 acres of wooded hillside. Reached by cable car from the station at Matlock Bath, there are two show caverns, which offer an in-depth look at the life of a lead miner and can be explored hands on. There are also woodland walks, exhibitions and videos, a cafe and an adventure play area for the children with spectacular views of Matlock Bath below.

Whistlestop Countryside Centre is based Matlock Bath station and is run by the Derbyshire Wildlife Trust. It includes learning areas for children and schools, exhibition spaces, beautiful wildlife garden and lots of family activities and a gift shop.

Masson Mills Working Textile Museum is a unique collection of historic textile machinery and memorabilia from one of Sir Richard Arkwright’s showpiece mills.  There are also some great shops here too.

Matlock Bath Illuminations take place each year throughout September and October when the riverbank is transformed into a magical wonderland of fairy lights and illuminated displays. Each weekend the Venetian Nights take to the water and the carnival procession of decorated and illuminated floats, meander down the river, concluding with a cliff top fireworks display.

The Boxing Day Raft Race is a unique event, which takes place each December 26 with teams wearing fancy dress, paddling along the River Derwent from Cawdor Quarry to Cromford Meadows, earning money for charity.