If arriving at St Davids and you need a local taxi then you'll find a rank full of willing drivers. These all work on the City Council tarrifs and so the cost of your journey will be metered and thus it doesn't matter which company you use. However if you want to go further afield then use the Capital Taxi service who will offer you pre-arranged fixed fares to your destination.
Capital can be considerably cheaper than the metered guys for longer distances and are especially useful for early morning/late night arrivals. Their taxis can be booked in advance to meet your train, and even if your train is delayed they'll still be there to meet you (with no extra charge for waiting). Or alternatively you can just pop into the office which is just outside the station and is open 24/7, 365 days a year (plus an extra one every leap year).
A quirky little journey here in Exeter is this ferry service across the River Exe at Exeter Quay. This is more a bit of fun than an essential crossing as there's a perfectly good footbridge 50 metres or so upstream.
There has been a ferry crossing here since at least 1641, long before the present-day bridge was built, and in those days it was very much a working crossing. It's interesting to note that in the 19th century the ferry was licensed by the local council and several of the licensees were local publicans - in 1803 Richard Sercombe, landlord of the Fountain Inn (now The Prospect Inn) and in 1877 Charles Edwards of the Port Royal - and so it was obviously in their interests to keep the ferry running.
The ferry became known as Butt's Ferry when in 1973 the City Council attempted to close it down but were thwarted by a local resident, Mr George Butt, after a seven hour public enquiry.
The present day ferry is now operated by the City Council and dates back to 2005. It is technically a "floating bridge" (one of only 5 in the UK), being attached to a wire rope strung across the river by which it is manually pulled. When large boats need access up or down the river the wire is simply lowered into the water.
It's more of a "Thing to Do" rather than a serious "Transportation Tip" but for only 20 pence is one of the cheapest journeys in the city.
...then use the Park and Ride service.
Exeter has a compact city centre within which everything of interest is easily walkable. It is also a busy commercial city and the roads can be very congested. Whilst there are several central car parks these often fill up during peak periods and will cost from about £6 to £11 for the day.
A much cheaper alternative, which also benefits the city by reducing pollution, is to use the Park and Ride service. There are 5 car parks strategically located on the outskirts of the city and these are linked to the centre by subsidised bus services. The buses run from about 7 am until about 7 pm, an average journey time will be about 15 minutes and the buses run with a peak frequency of every 10 minutes. At the time of writing a return bus trip will cost £2 per person which includes the use of the car park.
All the details are on the website below:
In Medieval times, when Exeter was fortified by its walls, the entire city sat on top of its hill. The city has sprawled a bit since then but its main shops and attractions are still clustered on the site of the old city.
Thus cycling in and out of the city centre there's always hills to be climbed as well as busy traffic to be negotiated. There are plenty of city centre cycle paths on the main roads (often shared with bus lanes) but if you are a casual visitor you might find the layout confusing - I still do!
However in order to enjoy Exeter by bike you don't need to actually cycle into it as the River Exe forms a 180 degree loop around the centre from St Davids to the Quayside diametrically opposite with the city in the middle.
Both sides of the river have off-road cycle paths and wherever you want to get to within the centre is rarely much more than 10 minutes walk and there's plenty of riverside cycle parking which is perfectly safe during the day. And of course there's plenty of pubs too on the loop!!
Website below is the local group formed to encourage cycling in Exeter whilst second link is a useful cycle map of the city.
My itinerant work travels around Devon see me passing through Exeter quite often and so when I'm on the road (by train!) the best place to leave my bike is at St Davids train station.
I wouldn't recommend using any of the city's other public bike parking spaces as there's a lot of dumb-dumbs around when the pubs and clubs close for the night and for some reason these idiots seem to think that bicycles are an obvious target for mindless vandalism.
In theory you need a valid train ticket to use the bike parking at St Davids but the guys on the barriers are cool if you just tell them you want to park/collect your bike and that you're getting a train later.
If arriving in Exeter on the mainline services from London Waterloo, or on the branchlines from Exmouth, Barnstaple or Torbay, the Central railway station is just that - central.
The station is located on Queens Street, about 5 minutes walk from the High Street and is close to most of the main central hotels (the Rougement Thistle is just across the road).
The station itself doesn't have much in the way of facilites but there's plenty of cafes and bars just up the road and the excellent Angel pub immediately opposite.
For service details and timetables use either of the links below.
Buses run from Exeter St Davids railway station to and from the airport roughly hourly during the day, with stops in the city centre including the main bus station. The #56 Stagecoach service is the Exmouth bus which runs Monday to Saturday whilst on Sundays and Bank Holidays this is replaced by the #379 to Honiton and Sidmouth.
The bus stop is just outside the station, the furthest one to the left as you exit, and the journey takes about 25 minutes. At the time of writing the one-way fare was about 4 Pounds.
Exeter Bus Station at Paris Street, which is operated by Stagecoach, is the city's bus transportation centre from which the two main bus companies, Stagecoach and First, cover all of South Devon, with links to Barnstaple (and hence accessing the North of the County). This is also the terminus for National Express services linking the rest of the country. For a bus station this is particularly well organised with a series of bays from which the buses to different parts of the county leave, organised into logical groupings.
Everything is well signed and timetables are posted in each bay with the relevant bus details. The information office is generally helpful and drivers and other staff are happy to provide guidance also. This makes finding your bus pretty much idiot-proof - well it would have to be for me!!
Contact number below is for Traveline which provides bus and rail service details nationally and is also particularly well organised.
Normally when I travel in and out of Devon, to wherever, I take the train as that is my preferred mode of transport. I did however have the occasion to travel up to Manchester recently for a day out with a special friend and being under tight time constraints decided to look at flight options from Exeter. I must admit to having been pleasantly surprised by the number of destinations that are now available from here and yes; there was Manchester with a couple of flights daily provided by the up and coming (relatively) low-cost airline Flybe.
The airport itself really is a little cutie, small but perfectly formed, and has all the bits and bobs one would expect of an airport including cash machines, bureau de change, cafes and an air-side bar as well as a little "duty-free" shop.
The airport is only about 5 miles out of the city centre and has an hourly bus service (service 56 to Exmouth) which runs from St Davids railway station via the main Paris Street bus station to the airport with a journey time of about 25 minutes.
Flybe (which is based here) is the main operator, offering flights to about 30 UK and European cities. Other operators include Skybus (to the Isles of Scilly), Air Transat (to Toronto, Canada) as well as various summer charter operations such as Balkan Holidays to Bulgaria, First Choice to Greece and many others.
Yep, I like this airport and for the budget conscious the burger van on the car park is the place for lunch!
There are two ways to get to Exeter from London.
First Great Western from Paddington is usually the fastest (2-3 hours), but South West Trains from Waterloo is often cheaper, albeit slower (3 - 3.5 hours).
On South West Trains you can also use an annual Travelcard (Goldcard) to get a one-third discount off Saver tickets (£18.03 each way).
When travelling to Exeter from London you have two options. To leave from London Waterloo Station or Paddington Station.
To go from Waterloo is cheaper (though not by much) it is a longer journey (nearly and hour longer) and the trains aren't as nice.
So if you can, leave from Paddington, and pick yourself up a Paddington Bear toy as well!
Exeter has 2 main railway stations, St David's and Central, and it is St David's that most people will first arrive at (except for trains from London Waterloo which stop first at Central).
St David's is the gateway to The West Country with regular services to and from London as well as Scotland and the North of England and is a wonderfully atmospheric station providing a terminus for not just the national rail services but also the local services both down (to South Devon) and up (to North Devon as far as Barnstaple). Going West, trains continue through Plymouth and on to Cornwall as far as Penzance.
The station itself is about a 15 minute walk into Exeter city centre (all uphill!) but is only a short train ride to Exeter Central, a similar bus journey from just outside the station to The High Street and also has a (usually) well-attended taxi rank.
The website below is a link to Wikipedia for more station info, whilst other and the phone number are for National Rail.
This little ferry boat is a gorgeous little gimick, especially considering there is a footbridge over the river Exe less 100 meters away, its called Butts Ferry . I imagine there has been a ferry service here for 100s of years. It only takes literally a minute to get accross, its a nice think for children to do. I cant remember the cost, but is was something like 30 pence each way. Bargin!
Go to the historic Quayside & you cant miss it.
Exeter International Airport is quite small compared to other Airports,but do quite alot of flights to lots of countrys including Tunisia,Cyprus,Spain,Greece,Canada,Lapland,Norway,Portugal,Turkey and many more.check out there web site for more information,there is also a bar, restaurants and shops.
Use The 56 Bus From The Airport To Exeter The Bus Runs Every Hour To Exeter And Is Great Value For Money.
Once At The Bus Station In Exeter You Can Travel Anywhere In The Southwest Or Nearby Is The Rail Stration