1. Cycle the Manifold Way
The Manifold Trail offers nine miles of almost traffic free cycling through the Staffordshire Peaks. It is probably the UK’s oldest cycle trail converted from a former railway line and opened around 1930. It is suitable for children and older people with gentle gradients on a tarmac track and minor roads along the Manifold valley including the natural cavern known as ‘Thor’s Cave’.
2. Get a thrill at Alton Towers
Alton Towers is one of the world’s leading theme park resorts and one of the UK’s biggest tourist attractions welcoming millions of visitors every year. With a host of rides and attractions spread over 500 acres of countryside, Alton Towers provides a wide range of activities and adventures to suit people of all ages. It is the home of many of the UK’s best-known roller coasters including Nemesis, Oblivion, Air, Corkscrew and Rita – Queen of Speed.
3. Go wild wallaby spotting
Wallabies are thought to roam the desolate moors around the Roaches in the Staffordshire Peaks. Apparently released in World War II from a nearby private zoo they managed to breed and survive. Some say that the last survivors disappeared in the 1990s, however there have been several sightings in the last few years across quite a wide area of the Peak District. Keep your eyes peeled!
4. Try a Staffordshire oatcake
The Staffordshire oatcake dates back to the 17th century and was the fast-food of its day – commonly sold directly from the window of a house to customers on the street. Nowadays the pancake-like oatcake is not widely available, although it can still be bought at Asplins Bakery in Leek.
5. Go potty in the Potteries
The craftsmanship, design and ingenuity that turned six towns in north Staffordshire into the famous Potteries remains apparent some 250 years on. The story is told in no better place than the Wedgwood Museum. This is no mausoleum to a lost industry but a prize-winning celebration of manufacture and design. It houses 8,000 pieces of exquisite elegance, stretching back to the earliest days of Josiah Wedgwood’s works and deemed by Unesco to be one of Britain’s top 20 cultural assets in 2011.
6. Discover Staffordshire’s hidden gem
Dimmingsdale is an enchanting and beautiful valley – a haven for walkers, nature lovers and those seeking tranquillity and spectacular scenery. In the 19th century the Earl of Shrewsbury transformed Dimmingsdale into his own personal country paradise thus creating this glorious valley. Affectionately known as ‘Little Switzerland’ and ‘Fairy Glen’, the Sunday Times stated Dimmingsdale was one of the most beautiful places to walk in winter, although it is beautiful at any time of the year.
7. Be amazed by Staffordshire’s very own treasure trove
The Staffordshire hoard, 1500 glistening pieces of Anglo-Saxon gold and silver, lay buried together for 1300 years until discovered by a man with a metal detector in 2009. Great efforts have been made to keep this largest ever find in the Midlands. Some of this amazing treasure trove is on display at the Potteries Museum in Stoke on Trent.
8. Take the stepping stones across the river in beautiful Dovedale
Beautiful Dovedale is one of the highlights of the Peak District. This dramatic limestone ravine, on the Staffordshire/Derbyshire border, runs for just over three miles and is famous for its stunning scenery, wildlife and the much-loved stepping stones which cross the River Dove. For the walker, the area holds mile after mile of paths – both alongside the river and over the surrounding countryside, linking villages and hamlets. The most easily accessed section of Dovedale is the three-mile stretch that begins at Milldale in the north and runs through a wooded section where the River Dove meanders slowly through the valley.
9. Explore the new National Forest
The National Forest is one of the most ambitious and imaginative environmental projects in the UK. Stretching across parts of Derbyshire, Leicestershire and Staffordshire 200 square miles of countryside are being transformed, merging ancient woodland with new planting to form a new national forest. The gently undulating landscape is perfect for walking, cycling or horse-riding. Through the creation of new habitats, the National Forest is also an ideal location for bird and wildlife watching.
10. Marvel at Britain’s most unusual gardens
The product of an extraordinary imagination, the Biddulph Grange Gardens are a wonder to behold and one of Britain’s most unusual gardens. Designed in the mid-19th century as a series of connecting ‘compartments’, the gardens feature an imitation of the Great Wall of China and the Egyptian Court.
If this inspires you, why not browse our selection of holiday parks and caravan parks in Staffordshire, and see what catches your eye?
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