Monthly Archives: July 2013

Walk up Solomon’s Temple

We’re lucky enough to live in Buxton within 10 minutes walk of town and, in the other direction, 10 minutes walk of gorgeous greenery and the Peaks.

When I first came to Buxton hubby took me up to the folly Solomon’s Temple which gives the walker wonderful views across Buxton and beyond. Recently, with it being my mum’s first visit to the area, it was top of my list of places to take her.

The walk to Solomon’s Temple starts from the car park by Poole’s Cavern and after a climb up some steps it’s a gentle walk up the hill through Grin Low woods.

I’m not a very good walker, but I found the terraine quite easy. It’s not really suitable for a pushchair so hubby put baby E in the Baby Bjorn and off we went.

It’s obviously a popular place with families and dog walkers. Once we came through the woods towards the summit of Grin Hill there were many excited children and families running up and over the mounds of kilns from limestone mining.

Solomon’s Temple was built in 1896 to replace an earlier building erected by a local landowner and farmer Solomon Mycock. Excavations have proven that it’s not a true folly, as it does have a purpose – it’s built on the site of an ancient burial mound. Several Bronze Age skeletons have been found, alongside later Roman items.

The new (!) tower has a spiral staircase you climb to get to the top, with handrails all the way along and at the top a parapet you can look over. All this meant my scared of heights mum was persuaded to climb and look out from the top! She even obliged with a cheesy photo of baby E, hubby and myself.

Michelle, hubby & baby E at the top of Solomon's Temple
At the top of Solomon’s Temple

After a good airing and hubby pointing out all the local points of interest – such as the impressive dome of the University of Derby – we took a leisurely walk back to Poole’s Cavern to try out the cafe.

Hubby carrying baby E

We picked a corner of the cafe so I could feed E, though to begin with she was more interested in the birds just outside the window, attracted by all the bird feeders. I felt a bit exposed, even in the corner of the room, but the lady needed feeding!

The cafe has recently refreshed their menu, focusing on a wider range of local produce and good coffee. Being a breast feeding mum I was quite peckish, but unfortunately there wasn’t anything dairy free I could eat. I settled down with a decaf black coffee (as did mum – she prefers skimmed milk) and hubby had a white coffee. We all agreed that the coffee should have been stronger, it was a bit disappointing. (Update: hubby has since been back and reports that his filter coffee was much better the second time around).

View of cafe interior
View of cafe

After her feed we entertained E with a selection of the toys available – very child friendly! Mum checked out the toilets and they do have changing facilities, though we didn’t use them.

Toys
Toys

As the weather was still sunny we decided to go for a walk into town, rather than go into the cavern so that’s saved for another day.

Baby friendly overview:

  • Gentle, short walk suitable for baby carrying with the pay off of amazing views at the end.
  • Large car park.
  • Cafe with baby changing facilities.
  • Toys to entertain children.
  • Large outside play area and picnic tables.
  • Plenty of space for pushchairs.

Would be even better if (in the cafe):

  • Coffee was made a bit stronger!
  • Some dairy free options on the menu.
  • Comfy / cosy chairs for more discreet breast feeding.

In summary; a lovely walk, amazing views, child friendly cafe but the coffee needs to be a bit stronger!

On a rainy day we’ll be back to explore the cavern and I’ve heard it’s THE place in Buxton to see Santa!

Thanks for reading, here’s to our next adventure!