Family fun this October school holiday

Visit Ilam Park and Dovedale this October school holiday for walks through crunchy leaves, a landscape of colour change and the popular Spooky Trail.

Join us for a family adventure outdoors this October school holiday.


Spooky Trail

The popular Spooky Trail returns to Ilam Park for spooky challenges in the woods and a chance to make a muddy broth for our nocturnal guests. The self guided trail is ideal for families and dogs on leads are welcome to join in too. Both children and dogs will get a tasty treat at the end of the trail.

The Spooky Trail is less than a mile in length and includes grassy slopes, steps and uneven surfaces. There are places to stop for an autumn picnic along the way, and the trail crosses St. Bertram's bridge so you can stop off for a game of pooh sticks too.

The trail is available from the stableyard shop daily, 11am to 4pm. No booking is needed, just turn up! The trail costs £1, which goes towards looking after Ilam Park.

Orienteering at Ilam Park

There is a permanent orienteering course in Ilam Park, available all year. It is ideal for families and a great introduction to the activity. Whatever the weather, the course is a fun way to explore the parkland and exercise outdoors.

The course has been developed by Derwent Valley Orienteers, our local orienteering club. You can buy a orienteering map from the stableyard shop for £1.50, which goes towards looking after Ilam Park. Dogs on leads are welcome to join in too. Some parts of the course are in areas grazed by sheep.

Cross the famous Stepping Stones in Dovedale

Across the fields from Ilam Park, you'll discover Dovedale with the famous Stepping Stones across the River Dove. These are a popular destination for families, but if you walk further alog the valley you'll be rewarded with even more things to spot. Look out for fossils in over 100 steps at Lover's Leap, and beyond there you can see the huge limestone arch infront of Reynard's Cave. There is a free downloadable walk here.