Ashbourne is a lovely market town in Derbyshire in the south of the Peak District and an ideal place to spend some hours wandering around the lovely shops or for sampling tea and cakes, real ale or an evening meal.

Some of our favourite places to visit are the antique shops on Church Street.  You could literally browse here for hours such is the choice. Or you could visit the Market Place on Thursdays and Saturdays for the local market, whilst the artisanal market is every second Sunday in the month.  

Ashbourne has a wide selection of independent stores and boutiques in the lovely cobbled streets.  The Village Rainbow is our favourite gift shop, it's an ideal place to pick up birthday presents or just to wander round.  The Gin Gaf is worth a visit with a selection of gins that are not easily bought elsewhere.  And for a great selection of beers try Maison Du Bierre. 

If like us you can't resist a good old fashioned DIY shop do pop into David Neil Mica Hardware, it really does have a fabulous selection of all things DIY and a good cookware selection too.  

If food is what you crave, Ashbourne does not disappoint.  Our top cafe picks are either The Flower Cafe or Dillons, but the well known, The Gingerbread Shop, which our kids when younger loved, is great too.  The building itself dates back to 1492.  

For a spot of lunch try Bramhall's Deli and Cafe or some gorgeous breads, rolls and pizzas to take away at The Ashbourne Bakehouse.  

For an evening meal Anaya's Indian restaurant is good, and on the spicy note we also like The Thai Basement.  The Lamplight restaurant is highly recommended for a special evening meal with English/French style dishes.  Finally the Market Place Fish and Chip shop is an institution and not to be missed for proper 'newspaper' fish and chips.

For beer drinkers do not miss Smiths Tavern a High Street pub with fabulous ale.  As it has a small frontage a bit like a shop be careful not to miss it.  Dogs are welcome at all times and children up to 9 pm.  The only food though is pork pies and bar snacks.   

Finally, we couldn't write about Ashbourne without mentioning the traffic free Tissington Trail at the top of the town.  It's a great spot for walkers and cyclists as the setting off point for the Trail.

So plenty to see and do in Ashbourne.  It's only 15 minutes by car to our holiday cottage, Valley View, so next time you are in the area with friends and family why not think about staying? 

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