Ilam Hall - Manifold Valley - Wetton - Thor's Cave

You need to log in as a member of Walkingworld to access the details for this walk and have an active subscription. Please join, or log in above if you are already a member.

This circular walk starts from the National Trust's Ilam Hall property. Here, you will find a youth hostel, caravan park, ample car parking, an excellent tea room, toilets, etc. Also, it is well worth visiting the information centre (between the shop and the toilets) where you can find out all about the history and geology of the Manifold Valley, along which you will be walking. From Ilam Hall, you can enjoy a short riverside stretch along the bubbling Manifold River, before climbing to the eastern edge of the Manifold Valley for stunning views along the valley and in all directions.

After passing through a nature reserve, the walk runs through the pretty village of Wetton, where we recommend a break at the Royal Oak pub. After lunch, follow the walk as it drops into the Manifold Valley, with an opportunity to explore the impressive Thor's Cave.

Making use of the Manifold Track cycle trail for a short distance as it runs alongside the Manifold - usually a dry riverbed, as the river runs underground along this stretch in all but very wet conditions - we soon climb out of the valley once again, near the limestone cliffs of Beeston Tor (a popular spot for climbers). After a steady climb up to Throwley Hall and its herd of white Charolais cattle, the gentle descent back to Ilam Hall makes for a relaxing wind down to the walk. Keep a lookout for the distinctive flat-topped pyramid shape of Thorpe Cloud towards the last leg of the walk.

England - Central England - Staffordshire - Peak District


Ancient Monument, Birds, Butterflies, Cafe, Church, Gift Shop, Great Views, Hills or Fells, National Trust, Pub, River, Tea Shop, Toilets
7/12/2022 - Sarah Green

Loved this walk! We had noted the directions from the previous comments and these proved useful throughout! Plenty of changing scenery and Thors cave definitely worth a look if you can negotiate the near marble steps in. At point 20 there is now a proper clearly marked kissing gate in place almost at the end of the lane on the right.

9/3/2017 - Rod London

2) Don't cross the stone bridge. 7) Signpost is now marked simply 'Wetton' 11) This is a bumpy path where it's easy to lose your footing. 13 & 34) The 'meadow' is really just a field. 14) The path coming from the left is not very clear - just slightly darker green. 15) Cross several stiles. 20) Stone wall crossing is easy to miss. 28) Follow the track, veering to the right, towards Throwley Hall. 29) The fingerpost is in place now. 31) Turn right through the farmyard, passing a house on the left. 32) The 'track' looks like a small road.

9/3/2017 - Rod London

Enjoyable walk with the pub perfectly located at roughly half-way. There is free parking on the road approaching Ilam Hall (where parking is quite expensive)

9/8/2014 - Sue Davison

We completed this walk on Saturday 6 September 2014 and many thanks to Sam Roebuck for such detailed and accurate walk description. All comments were spot on and made for a very relaxed and enjoyable walk. At note 11, on the nature reserve, there is now what looks like a recently added bench that makes a great stop for well earned break with a lovely view over the valley.

Walkingworld members near this walk

Holidays and activities
Distance away
24.3 Miles
Pubs, cafes and restaurants
Distance away
14.9 Miles