The River Exe is a lovely walk,it leads right down to the Quay with lots of places to eat and drink ,there is some lovely little shops and you can hire bikes or even canoes to go on the river,well worth a visit.
The Royal Albert Memorial Museum, in Queen Street, Exeter is renowned throughout the World for it's wonderful collection of ancient artefacts. With 16 galleries of exhibits to see, including fine art, clocks, silverware, archaelogy, ceramics and Worldwide cutltures. No visitor to Exeter should miss the opportunity to venture back in time - completely free of charge (opening times 10-5, Mon-Sat). The museum is run by Exeter City Council, and was opened in 1865. The building itself is in a Ventian Gothic style of architecture, inside the gift shop, cafe and various workshops offer something for everyone.
Amongst the most treasured items, is the famous Exeter Puzzle Jug, a medieval (around 1300ad) joke. The jug which originated in France, was was found in fragments in South Street in 1899, and wonderfully restored at the British Museum in the 1930s. The jug has remained in the Exeter museum ever since. Puzzle jugs are were made so that the person attempting to drink from them would unsuspectantly spill the liquid over themselves. However, strangely, and perhaps part of the joke, the Exeter jug, can be drunk from without any spillage! The jug is housed in a special glass case in the museum. Close examination would show many more jokes within the jug...including the donkey shaped handle, and the naked clergymen.
St. Mary Steps Church, located in West Street dates back to the 12th Century, and was rebuilt in the 15th Century. It is a red sandstone construction. The original Norman font can still be seen inside. The Matthew the Miller Clock, is located on the South face of the 4-bell tower, and can be seen in the photographs here. It dates to around 1620, and it is interesting to see the figures strike each hour. The seated figure holds a gilded sceptre and wears a helmet. The head nods, and the arms move at each strike of the hour. The two other figures, made of lead are holding hammers that strike the bells, each having a different tone. The figures are thought to have been modelled on Henry the Eighth (seated figure), and two guards, but in fact was named after a local miller who lived his life like clockwork that people who knew him, used him as a human clock!
This is one of the most interesting parts of historic Exeter, with the House that Moved , Tudor Houses of West Street, the 100 Step Stepcote Hill, and the remains of St.Edmunds Church & Medieval Bridge within a few minutes away.
There has been a quay in Exeter since Roman times. However, by the 14th century boats could not get up the river to unload, because of weirs built across the river, so in the 1560s John Trew built a canal to provide access to the Quayside.
Today Exeter Quay has been transformed into a vibrant area full of find swanky Café’s, bars and riverside eating places. As you stroll along you will pass some delightful stalls selling local crafts from historic vaulted cellars and bonded warehouses. The Quayside visitor centre is also worth a visit, here you will find information on how the quayside was developed and details of the local history of the area.
There is a pay and display car park just a few minutes walk away, you will see the car park signposted 'Cathedral and Quay' as you enter Exeter.
As you walk around the City of Exeter you can see the remains of the City Walls wherever you go. Almost 70% of the walls remain; they are almost 2000 years old have repelled rebellions and have been the scene for many civic ceremonies and celebrations. There are nine information panels dotted at certain points around the wall which all form part of a great looking walking trail. For further information see website below.
Exeter cathedral is a wonderfully light and airy Medieval cathedral, and an absolutely unmissable place to visit if you are in the city (or the area).
It is built on the site of the city's original Roman settlement. The first Norman building (1114) had two towers, which were kept when the cathedral was extended and rebuilt. That's why the cathedral is particularly light and airy.
Make sure you look at the detailed frontage before you enter: it is full of intricate carvings and sculptures, worn by time and weather and protected by netting from pigeons but still wonderful. Originally (they date from between 1342 and 1470) they were brightly painted.
And make sure you look up when you are walking around the interior. The wonderfully arched roof was created as a 'Vision of Heaven' and is simply stunning. There are magnificently-carved roof bosses (the round stones which lock the ceiling vaults in place).....over 400 of them. Just above the pillars are elaborate carvings (corbels): check those too, and look especially for the musician standing on a dog, and the 'tumbler' (acrobat) performing a somersault.
The cathedral is filled with memorials which span the centuries, from elegantly-draped Regency Greek maidens mourning the dead to the anatomically-exact decaying corpse once fashionable in Medieval times, knights in full armour and their ladies, early Christian bishops, Crusaders, plaques and graveslabs galore.
Go into the Quire (choir) to see the wonderfully-carved Medieval misericords, wooden ledges under the seats provided to ease the tired bottoms of Medieval monks as they stood through night-time services. You'll see an elephant on one of them...the carver had clearly never seen a real elephant!
And whilst your're in the Quire make sure you look at the elaborately-carved bishop's throne, dating from 1312. There are no screws or nails in this 18m-high structure, just superbly-skilful carpentry and wooden pegs. It's covered with tiny heads...human and animal.
Exeter cathedral suffered bomb damage during the Second World War but, thankfully, it was minimised by precautions already taken and by subsequent restorations. But you can still see the scars in some places.
There is so much to see and enjoy in this wonderful cathedral you should allow at least a couple of hours for your visit.
Guided tours can be booked and, of course, anyone can attend the daily services (details on the cathedral website)
Entrance fee of 5GBP for adults as of January 2012..
At the heart of the city is the spectacular Cathedral church of St. Peter, which rises up from the spacious lawned, Cathedral Close, allowing you to see the full majesty of the cathedral façade.
The two towers of the cathedral, are from the Norman Period, dating from 1110, whilst the majority of the building, including the splendid West Front with its medieval figures of the apostles and prophets, dates from the 14th century.
The Gothic vault roof, built in 1396, above the central aisle, is the longest unbroken roof of this type in the world. The 300ft (105 m) long tierceron vault, weighing 5000 tons, stands on columns of Pur-beck (Dorset stone) - the rest of the Cathedral being constructed of limestone quarried from near-by Beer.
The oak Bishop's Throne (1312-17) in the centre of the cathedral is the tallest Bishop's Throne in England.
Exeter's quayside features a unique collection of historic industrial buildings and warehouses. The main attraction being the brick built Custom House. This was the first purpose built custom house in the Country - constructed during the reign of Charles II. The warehouses along the quay have now been converted to a variety of antique shops, craft centres, restaurants and tea rooms.
The Guildhall in the High Street is thought to be the oldest working municipal building in the Country. The main body of the Guildhall, dates back to 1330. The Guildhall has a 15th Century arch-braced timber roof standing behind a Tudor pillared façade built in 1592.
Built during the 14th and 15th Centuries these underground passages are a series of Medieval tunnels originally constructed to provide the city with a reliable supply of fresh water from the springs outside of the original Roman city walls.
These are the only examples of sub-terranean aqueducts open to the public in England. Guides are available to escort you through the passage ways beneath Exeter's busy streets, after you have explored the exhibition and watched the video presentation.
Stepcote Hill is a steep cobbled medieval street that has steps at each side for pedestrians and a narrow cobbled roadway for packhorses; it is lined with 15th century merchants houses was once the main entrance into the city from its west side.
It is believed that its name is derived from the Old English word meaning steep rather than from step.
A simple step to imagine how the rest of the city must have looked during this period.
Best to wear flat shoes for this walk - and it can get pretty slippery in the rain so take care!
The Exe River and Canal offer great walks and cycles and there's plenty of watering holes along the routes. Some of these are characterless large company places but there's still plenty of interesting little privately run pubs too.
One that's often overlooked is the Royal Oak in St Thomas. This is a cracking little pub with friendly owners, staff and locals. The beer is always good, and reasonably-priced, and the beer garden is on the riverside just down from the main Exe Bridge leading from the city centre.
This is an ideal spot to get away from it all and enjoy a bit of local colour.
This cathedral is gorgeous - they all are in England! Built in Gothic style. The Cathedral is open to visitors from 9.30am-5pm.
The Cathedral relies entirely on voluntary donations for its upkeep and running costs.
We therefore recommend that all adult visitors make a donation of £3.50 towards their visit.
Free guided tours take place from March to October at the following times:
Monday to Friday, 11.00am, 12.30pm* and 2.30pm
Saturday, 11am and 12.30pm*
* only during July, August and September
The Double Locks is one of my favourite pubs; is situated on the canal-side. Beautiful setting. Open 11am-11pm (ish)- think its closed on mons. Food available all day (spinach & feta pie, yum). Some great real ales ( try a pint of Old Bastard..). Live music sat evenings & BH weekends and think you can still camp here on weekends. Loads of outdoor space for kids. BBQ open in evenings. A pub you can happily spend all day at.....once you find it that is. Dogs/kids allowed. Disabled access.
You can also walk to 'The Turf' pub from here along the canal, you can't reach 'The Turf' by car.
At Exeter Quay you can hire Pedal boats, canoe's take a scenic boat trip or just a ferry to the other side. The latter is not just any ordinary ferry. For a small fee you can cross the river on this unique vessel which is not powered by motor or sail, oh no… there is a rope/chain across the river by which the captain of the boat pulls the vessel along from one side to the other!