From Oxford we took a train & then a bus to the little town of Bakewell. The Peak District had to be one of THE most scenic places on our trip. It was exactly how a person who'd never been to England, pictures England. Most likely because this is where they filmed Pride & Prejudice and various other girly films.
It took us a lot longer than we had expected to get there but we didn't entirely mind, there was so much to look at.
Rolling hills with stone fences and stone houses were everywhere here. I can picture a group of horses & hounds going across this landscape foxhunting, can't you?
Upon arrival in Bakewell, the bus dropped us off next to this stunning garden. It hadn't been as hot & dry as it was in London so everything was green and in full bloom. The whole town centre smelled nice from all of the roses.
Our original plan was to stay at the youth hostel in the town or Youlgreave but due to our trip taking longer than planned, we decided we'd stay in Bakewell instead. We went into the historic Rutland Arms Hotel to enquire about a room, at first it seemed that the rooms would be quite expensive but the wonderful lady at the front desk took pity on us and gave us a room at a really good rate!
But our room wasn't in the main hotel building pictured above, it was across the street in the old stable building! (which I of course thought was great!). They had converted the old stables into guest rooms. You could still see rings to tie the horses in the courtyard and tracks from the wagons under the archway. We had a neat view from our tiny window.
Ajoined to the stable building was a large antique shop with all kinds of amazing things including some old hunt whips and a sandwich case! I just about died when I saw the sandwich case but it was far too expensive for me to buy. I sadly had to leave it behind.
Included in the price of our room was breakfast in the hotel. We felt very posh (and slightly out of place) eating our breakfast in the fancy dining room the next morning.
We also met the proprietor of the hotel. A most interesting older gentlemen with round spectacles. He was also very accomodating to us.
The whole town was full of amazing shops from places to buy woolen garments, to bookstores and then of course there was the bakery! YUM! We bought lunch from the bakery, as well as a day old loaf of bread to take down to the river to feed to the ducks.
I had a lovely cornish pasty. We explored the town and made our way up the steep hill to the church.
The church was very old. That's one thing I was always amazed by, everything is so old compared to home. At home we consider the 1800's old but that is nothing compared to Europe. There were graves dating back to the 1500 and 1600's.
The walk down by the river was really beautiful too.
Feeding the ducks & swans was very entertaining! They would literally follow you up & down the pathway honking & quacking to be fed. They're very brave and would actually take bread right from your hand (but you had to watch those darned swans! They WILL bite your fingers!). The swans were a bit mean, they would chase the ducks away for all the food. While we were feeding the swans we noticed something else, HUGE fish in the river that were also going after the bread crumbs!
We also went to Chatsworth House but that is worthy of a post of it's very own!