Overlooked by Peveril Castle, Castleton lies at the western end of the Hope Valley, within sight of the former hillfort of Mam Tor and the spectacular limestone canyon of Winnats Pass.
The village is one of the most popular tourist destinations of the Peak District, boasting no less than four magnificent show caves – Peak Cavern, Speedwell Cavern, Treak Cliff Cavern and Blue John Mine – as well as Peveril Castle itself.
As well as these attractions, Castleton also has the added attraction of its situation, located as it is in the centre of an area with some of the best walking, cycling, caving, hang-gliding and rock climbing in England. This is a veritable paradise for outdoor enthusiasts.
Castleton also has an unusual annual festival, held each year on the 29th May. This is the ‘Garland or Oak-Apple day’, when the village is thronged by visitors all wearing a sprig of oak leaf and a couple parade through the village on horseback in period dress, with the man wearing an immense garland of flowers.
This festival is quite unique and its origin is uncertain, but for those who come to see it, it is a very special and memorable day.
Castleton has a full range of facilities for the visitor – whether it be cosy inns or welcoming B&Bs, self-catering cottages or well-stocked pubs, cafes or outdoor and souvenir shops.
There is a Tourist Information Centre near the centre of the village, with a small museum about life in the area in times gone by, and adjacent to this, a large visitors’ car park.
Castleton is not just a place to visit in summer. In winter the village turns on a spectacular range of decorations each year in mid-November, and many people visit in order to enjoy these and do some shopping on a crisp winter’s evening. At Christmas, there are Carol Concerts in Peak Cavern and Treak Cliff Cavern, accompanied by local brass bands.