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River Derwent White Water Rafting

Matlock, Peak District

• Rafting along the River Derwent in Derbyshire
• Start at Darley Dale and paddle to Matlock Bath
• Ride easy and moderate white water rapids
• Qualified rafting guide rides in the raft with you

What's Included

• Allow two hours for this white water rafting experience
• Rafts can take up to 8 participants and your raft guide
• Welcome and safety briefing by your BCU or IRF raft guide
• Raft between Darley Dale to Matlock Bath with low grade white water
• Rafting time is approximately one hour 20 minutes
• All equipment is provided
• Excellent countryside along the river
• A minimum of two people are required for this experience

What Can I Expect

If you fancy a bit of a paddle do Derwent river rafting! This is a great little corner of the world and setting off to explore along the River Derwent has to be one of the best things to do in Matlock. The scenery is stunning, the staff are all brilliant and it's a great fun.

Your meeting point for this River Derwent white water rafting session is right next to the Square and Compass, a classic stone-built inn just opposite the river. You'll be brought back from Matlock Bath to here at the end of your river rafting session. It's just such a perfect place for celebrating with a drink and maybe a nice meal after all that effort!

So back to your Derwent river rafting. This is a 4.5 mile stretch of the river that flows from Darley Dale into Matlock Bath. The upper section starts as a gentle paddle, so you can get used to the feeling of riding on moving water, practice a few techniques and generally get the gist of the boat. You'll even have time to take in the lovely riverside setting - with wildlife and maybe even a bit of wild swimming if you're up for it too.

Don't get too comfy though, as the lower section of the river awaits, where there are some moderate (grade 2) Derwent rapids to tackle. Watch out for pesky granite boulders in the middle of the river and the occasional eddy on the side (which is where the water flows the opposite way because of an obstacle under the water). With rapids known as Tower Fall, Flip Bridge and the Wind Tunnel, you'll all need to all paddle together to ride 'em!

With a gentle paddle out at the end as you arrive in Matlock Bath, there's one more highlight for you - High Tor. Seen from the river, this famous sheer cliff is all the more impressive, as it towers 120m above your heads. A befitting end point for your River Derwent white water rafting session.

Once out of the water, you'll be transported back to the start point at Darley Dale. Having conquered the Derwent river rafting, it's time to hotfoot it over the road the pub and raise a glass to your white water skills!


  • Rafting on the Derwent runs from 1st November to 31st March to ensure sufficient water levels
  • If you are looking for an activity during the summer months Canoeing, Kayaking or tubing are available at this location
  • Please note this experience is subject to a minimum of 6 participants on the day, in the unlikely event of this not being achieved your date may be re-scheduled


• Raft from the River Derwent at Station Road, Matlock, Derbyshire

Suitable For

• Minimum age 6
• All under 18's must be accompanied by a participating parent or guardian
• Maximum weight 22 stone
• Participants must be able to swim and feel confident in open water


• Spectators are welcome to watch the departure