Exmouth on the East Devon Coast is a vibrant, bustling town with two miles of golden sandy beach popular with families and watersports fans. Exmouth is a top spot on the Devon coast for windsurfing, kite surfing, kayaking, sailing, jet ski and on the sands beach volleyball. The sheltered 200 berth Exmouth Marina sits at the mouth of the River Exe, on the north west corner of Lyme Bay offering keen sailors year round access to sailing around the Exe Estuary, the bay and along the magnificent Jurassic coast. Family friendly adventure parks, castle estates and farm parks sit close to the seaside town and the National Trust’s quirky A La Ronde, a late 18th century, sixteen sided house with fascinating shell-encrusted galleries inside, is just 2 miles from Exmouth.
Town centre amenities include many restaurants, cafes, inns and shops. Exmouth is a great place for a seaside holiday, a walking and cycling weekend or a wildlife watching escape. The town’s position at the mouth of the River Exe on the western edge of the East Devon and Dorset Heritage (Jurassic) Coast affords access to a wealth of walking, wildlife watching and boat trip opportunities. Exmouth is now widely referred to as the ‘gateway to the World Heritage Jurassic Coast’. Pick up boat trip cruises from Exmouth dock just up from the seafront and close to the marina. A wide choice of wildlife and birdwatching boat trips also push up and around the estuary, or hop aboard a canal cruise to Exeter’s historic quay.
Cycling & Walking
Cycling and walking trails around the estuary, along the coast and through internationally renowned nature reserves is outstanding around Exmouth. Cyclists can head off along the Exe Estuary Trail (part of the larger National Cycle Network Route 2) towards pretty villages including Lympstone, Exton and Topsham with its many fine inns, tearooms, antiques centres and craft shops. Alternatively walk or cycle inland alongside the River Exe up to historic Exeter Quay. Ferry services offer a route across the river and canal like the little Topsham ferry across to Turf Locks.
Other cycle routes follow the path of old railway lines like the picturesque cycle path from Exmouth to Budleigh Salterton which passes through pretty countryside and woodland. For more of a cycling challenge you can detour off before Budleigh Salterton inland towards the Common. Bring your own bike, or hire bikes from one of several cycle hire outlets in Exmouth. Walkers are surrounded by spectacular coast and country walking territory. The South West Coast Path is accessible from Exmouth seafront.
Seaside Fun, Attractions & Events
Classic seaside attractions in Exmouth include donkey rides, crazy golf and boating on the lake. The long sandy beach is perfect for family bathing and watersports. Top family attractions also surround the town. The World of Country Life attraction complete with rides and play areas, a petting zoo, a safari train ride and falconry experiences sits just east of the town accessible via a summer open top bus service from Exmouth bus and train station. You can watch regular ferret races, view vintage vehicles and farming equipment, walk down a replica Victorian street or enjoy snacks and ice cream and a visit to the gift shop.
Crealy, Devon’s great adventure park with rides and attractions sits just to the north of Exmouth, and other great family days out in the area include Powderham Castle, Gardens and Deer Park with play area and pets corner located just across the estuary along the Exe riverbank. Visit Exmouth during one of its great annual events and festivals. The Exmouth Festival at the end of May includes live performances, open studios, a vintage mobile cinema, art and craft workshops and more. The town also hosts an autumn illuminated carnival, a kite festival and lots of themed events around the Christmas and New Year season.
Marina & Watersports
Exmouth has been dubbed the home of watersports on the East Devon Coast. The combination of a two mile stretch of sandy beach, a beautiful estuary and the Jurassic waters right on your doorstep offers a tailor-made environment for a variety of water-based activities. Swimming, diving and snorkelling, kite surfing, paddle boarding, sailing and yachting, jet skiing, kayaking and windsurfing are all popular around the Exe Estuary and the Jurassic waters. Exmouth Marina is a hub for sailing and watersports, located at the western end of the seafront. The Exe Sailing Club is based at the marina alongside watersports centres, power boat and rowing clubs and boat trip companies.
One of the best ways to view the Exe Estuary and the Jurassic coast is by boat. Stuart Line Cruises offer a choice of boat trips departing from Exmouth, and there is a variety of themed excursions to choose from including River Exe and Jurassic Coast Cruises, dining and cream tea cruises, day boat trips to Sidmouth, round robin boat and train combined trips and canal cruises between Exmouth and Exeter.
RSPB Avocet Birdwatching Cruises
Avocet offer a number of superb Bird Watching cruises on the River Exe throughout the winter. Birdwatching cruises begin at Exmouth and head up the estuary towards Topsham. The River Exe is home to around 25,000 birds migrating every winter, and is renowned for its wildfowl and many species of birds.
Getting Here & Where to Stay
Exmouth is just 10 miles from the M5 motorway, exit at Junction 30, then head south on the A376 Exmouth Road. Exmouth station offers fast and frequent rail links to nearby Exeter and the wider mainline rail network. The appropriately named Avocet line from Exeter Central runs along the river to Exmouth and features wonderful views en route. Journey time is around 25 minutes. The Avocet is the area’s famous bird which overwinters on the Exe Estuary annually. Routes across the estuary include the passenger Ferry from Starcross Pier near the station over to Exmouth Marina, from which it’s just a short stroll to the beach and town centre.
A wide choice of accommodation is available in and around popular Exmouth to suit all budgets and tastes. Flanking the long sandy beach and around the town centre you will find an excellent choice of seaside B&Bs and independent hotels with swimming pools. Stylish modern apartments overlook the marina, and in the wider countryside and estuary area sit family friendly caravan and camping parks, holiday cottages and rural bed and breakfast accommodation.