Enjoy a waterside stroll along the Cromford Canal on this easy walk in Derbyshire. This section of the canal runs from Cromford to Ambergate and is designated as a Biological Site of Special Scientific Interest and a Local Nature Reserve. The walk passes the Leawood Pump House by the aqueduct over the River Derwent and a series of pretty bridges. You'll also pass Shining Cliff Woods and enjoy lovely views of the Derwent Valley. The walk makes use of the Derwent Valley Heritage Way so you could continue along this long distance walking route to extend your walk.
The canal is located just a few miles south of Matlock.
PostcodeDE4 3RQ - Please note: Postcode may be approximate for some rural locations
Cromford Canal Ordnance Survey Map - view and print off detailed OS map
Cromford Canal Open Street Map - view and print off detailed map
Cromford Canal OS Map - Mobile GPS OS Map with Location tracking
Cromford Canal Open Street Map - Mobile GPS Map with Location tracking
Head to Wheatcroft’s Wharf at Cromford Mills for some lovely canalside refreshments. There's several tables right next to the water making it the ideal spot to relax on a fine day. They have a good menu with fresh ‘made to order’ food from oven baked potatoes to homemade soup, Paninis, Pizza, summer salads or a simple sandwich.
The site is also worth spending some time at with a wealth of information on this area. Cromford Mill is the home of Sir Richard Arkwright’s first mill complex, birthplace of the modern factory system and internationally recognised as a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Inside the centre there's interactive displays, games and puzzles that tell the story of how the valley changed the world in the 18th Century with the growth of the British cotton industry and its global impact. You can find the site at a postcode of DE4 3RQ for your sat navs.
Pictured above the Arkwirght Mill and the cafe at Cromford Mills.
The canal path makes for an excellent dog walk. You could also take a detour and visit Shining Cliff Woods on the western side of the canal near Ambergate. It's another popular spot for dog walkers. Cromford Mills mentioned above is also dog friendly. Dogs on leads are welcome in the Visitor Centre and Cromford Mills Story, but are not permitted to go into the Arkwright Experience as the show contains flashing lights and loud sounds.
Further Information and Other Local Ideas
The canal passes close to the village of Crich which is well worth a small detour from the route. This pretty village is known as the location for the setting for the ITV series Peak Practice and the excellent Crich Tramway Village. This fascinating museum contains over 60 trams built between 1873 and 1982 and is set within a recreated period village containing a working pub, cafe, old-style sweetshop and tram depots.
Also on the canal is the fascinating Midland Railway Centre where you can admire the old steam trains, explore a delightful 35 acre country park and vist the attractive Codnor Park Reservoir.
For more walking ideas in the area see the Derbyshire Walks and Peak District Walks pages.