Distance: 7.5 miles; 12 km
Estimated Time: 3.5 hours
Map: OL24: The Peak District White Peak Area
Route: View in Google Maps
GPX File: Download GPX file (desktop only) – What is a GPX file?
Dovedale is a popular area in the Peak District due to its rivers and limestone gorge. Other attractions in the area include the stepping stones, caves and Thorpe Cloud. The Dovedale to Milldale walk featured on ITV’s Top 100 Walks in Britain.
The following route ventures away from the popular footpath on the return from Milldale to Dovedale. Venturing off to higher ground and to the summit of Baley Hill. This detour, and increased difficulty, is optional. You can return the same way if you wish to do so.
View route in Google Maps
Car Park and Facilities
The Dovedale to Milldale walk starts in the Dovedale Car Park. The full address is
Dovedale Car Park
The car park costs £3 to park for the day and is cash only. There are car parking attendants due to the popularity of the Dovedale area. There are toilets at the Dovedale Car Park and cost 20p. There are free public toilets in Milldale. Milldale also has Polly’s Cottage, a little shop selling food and hot/cold drinks.
Start of the Dovedale to Milldale Walk
Follow the path leading behind the toilets in Dovedale Car Park.
The River Dove will be in your right-hand side.
Cross over the stepping stones.
Continue following the River Dove.
Continue following the main path.
You can cross the small bridge to visit the cave next to Ilam rock or continue follow the path.
There are more caves along the route to Milldale.
Crossing over the bridge leads to Milldale. There are refreshments and toilets available in Milldale.
To return to Dovedale, you can either follow the same path back on yourself, or visit higher ground and the summit of Baley Hill. It is a tough walk to Baley Hill and why the walk is considered easy/moderate.
To continue to Baley Hill, follow the path to the right leading up the incline.
The path zig zags up the incline. Once you reach the stone wall, continue right, following the wall.
Following the stone wall will lead you for the majority of the way. There’s a small section where the path leads away from the stone wall and is replaced with a barbed-wire fence. Keep following the incline.
Top of Baley Hill.
The path from Baley Hill returns to the Dovedale to Milldale footpath. Continue over Baley Hill and start the decline.
Turn right when the path splits in two.
Keep left at the next split.
The route rejoins the path you initially followed to Milldale.
Follow the path for a couple of minutes before your next detour. Turn left up the steps.
Follow the wooden signposts and blue arrows.
Turn right at the signpost.
The route leads back to the original path again.
Cross the stepping stones and follow the path back to the Dovedale Car Park.