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Dovedale, Ashbourne

4.7
#1 of 11 in Nature in Derbyshire
Dovedale is a valley in the Peak District of England. The land is owned by the National Trust, and annually attracts a million visitors. The valley was cut by the River Dove and runs for just over 3mi between Milldale in the north and a wooded ravine near Thorpe Cloud and Bunster Hill in the south. In the wooded ravine, a set of stepping stones cross the river, and there are two caves known as the Dove Holes.Dovedale's other attractions include rock pillars such as Ilam Rock, Viator's Bridge, and the limestone features Lovers' Leap and Reynard's Cave.HistoryThe limestone rock that forms the geology of Dovedale is the fossilised remains of sea creatures that lived in a shallow sea over the area during the Carboniferous period, about 350 million years ago. During the two ice ages, the limestone was cut into craggy shapes known as reef limestone by the melting ice, and dry caves such as Dove Holes and Reynard's Kitchen Cave were formed.The caves were used as shelters by hunters around 13,000 BCE, and Dovedale has seen continuous human activity since. Around 4,500 years ago Neolithic farmers used the caves as tombs. There is evidence from Reynard's Cave of Bronze Age activity and artifacts found there are displayed at Buxton Museum and Art Gallery.
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Dovedale Reviews
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1,221 reviews
TripAdvisor
  • August 21, 2017
    We had some guests from India and we decided to take them to somewhere scenic. Dovedale is so beautiful! We took them to the stepping stones which was lovely. The only problem with the stepping stones...  more »
  • August 18, 2017
    We climbed Thorp Cloud from the Thorp side which is not too difficult. However, going down the other side is quite slippy with moving gravel. The climb back upThorp Cloud is not for the unfit. However...  more »
  • August 15, 2017
    We went to dovedale stepping stones earlier this week, the stepping stones aren't as impressive as everyone says. You can do a walk around the area so if you are planning on doing that and the steppin...  more »

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