Enjoy a virtual tour of Exeter Quay with an eclectic mix of cafes, restaurants, pubs and bars where you can enjoy good food, people watch and soak up the lovely atmosphere.
When the sun’s shining there’s no better place to be in Exeter than here on the Quayside. Cobbled paths lead between former warehouses that have been converted into antique shops, quirky stores, craft workshops, restaurants and pubs. Enjoy a beer at Samuel Jones or a pizza at On the Waterfront then walk it off with a casual stroll along the canal down to Double Locks and back.
Exeter Quay also known as Exeter Quayside is a part of the city of Exeter on the River Exe. Much of the quay area has been regenerated and it is a popular destination for tourist and locals alike. Now the quay receives no shipping along the canal and the only boats frequenting the 16th century quay are pedalos and canoes, and an assortment of yachts and pensioned off trawlers moored up in the canal basin.
- For a comprehensive history of the quay be sure to visit the Custom House Visitor Centre
- A manually operated cable ferry known as the Butts Ferry crosses the Exe at Exeter Quayside.
Exeter Quay was first used as a port in prehistoric times when a sandstone ledge was used to unload the ships of overseas traders. However, by 1381 the Countess Weir had blocked the river to shipping. In 1566 a canal was completed to provide access for ships. Over time the number of ships using the quayside increased and so the quay was expanded in the late 17th century. Further expansion occurred in 1830 when a new canal basin was dug. In 1840 the railways reached Exeter and the shipping began to decline. No longer used for shipping, the quayside is now mostly used for leisure.
- The Custom House Visitor Centre sits at the centre of Exeter Quayside. This historic building, built in 1680, houses visitor information which will tell you all you need to know about Exeter’s rich and varied history.
- Climbing Centre
- Devon Wildlife Trust at Cricklepit Mill.
- Hire a bike, canoe or kayak.
- Red Coat Guided Tours (Summer only)
- Boatyard Bakery
- On the Waterfront
- Samuel Jones
- Topsham Brewery
- The Turf
- Welcome Cafe
Walking or cycling is the best way to get around.
- There’s facilities on the quay to hire bikes and canoes.
- Butts Ferry transports you across the river in the summer for the princely sums of 40p for adults and 30p for children.
- There is also a cruise liner that runs to and from the Turf Hotel.
The Quay, Exeter EX2 4AP
- Bus, Transport G bus from the High Street runs hourly Monday – Saturday between 10.15am and 3.15pm, with the return service from the Quay running hourly between 10.30am and 3.30pm.
- Car, Just off Western Way, the Cathedral & Quay long stay pay and display multi-storey visitors’ car park is open all week, including Bank Holidays, from 7am and to 10pm. It has disabled parking on Level 4. Postcode EX1 1DX.
- Matford Park and Ride, between South Street and Haven Road runs every 10 minutes between 6.30am – 7pm Monday – Friday, and 7.40am – 6.45pm on Saturdays.
- Train, from Exeter St Thomas it’s a short 10 minute walk.
Tip: Haven Banks car park is probably the cheapest, but it’s a smart car park be aware your time starts as soon as you drive in, not when you purchase your ticket. Many have received fines for just being slightly over allotted time.