The ancient city of Exeter in Devon is based along the River Exe (hence the name) and dates back to the Roman era. The city is full of big chain and independent shops, bars, restaurants and a shit load of students. If you’re into museums, galleries and all that lovely arty farty bollocks then Exeter is full of it. If you’re into homeless people, gangs of youths and muggings then Exeter bus station is full of it.
I actually really like Exeter, it’s a smaller, English version of Edinburgh, kind of. I went to college here and used to hang out at a few of the rock music venues around the city. A few interesting things happened during my time at college; I saw Stephen Fry at the train station, there was a terrorist attack in a restaurant bathroom and a seagull stole my sandwich on the cathedral green. So, there’s always something going. Even if it isn’t all that good.
Isn’t religion great? Well that’s up for you to decide, but they do build bloody lovely buildings. Exeter Cathedral is no different. The Gothic architectural awesomeness was built between 1112 and 1400. The cathedral is surrounded by a large green where many people come to eat, drink and sleep; if I’m honest most of the people on the green are students but you won’t find much anti-social behaviour.
Along the cathedral green are a number of restaurants, tea shops and a few independent boutiques and bookshops, giving Exeter its classy and literature feel. In fact, the atmosphere and class of Exeter is a lot like Edinburgh. You can just feel the intelligence lingering in the air from the local University.
University & College
JK Rowling attended Exeter University to study French with Greek and German, of course. It’s a very difficult university to get into because you’ve actually got to be bright, smart and have pretty good grades. Hence why I went to Bournemouth University instead. Other famous and successful Uni alumni include: Zara Phillips, Caroline Lucas and Katie Hopkins. As you can see only the best royals, politicians, writers and arseholes go to Exeter Uni.
When I tell people I went to Exeter College I feel smug and intelligent because to the unknown person, Exeter College is as highly respected and selective as the university. It isn’t. Anyone can pretty much get a place there and you don’t get thrown out of the college for not turning up. Apparently…
I can’t believe that the severe lack of attendance on my behalf didn’t see me kicked out of the college but there we are. There’s a few campuses around Exeter and they were all rather ok. The best thing is that if you go to the College you can go into the University and use their library, so in a way I did actually go to Exeter University. I just want to be clever damnit!
This very scenic seaside town is just a 25 minute train journey from Exeter. There was once quite a few shops, restaurants and bars there but when I returned in 2015 I found that a lot of the establishments had closed down and nothing had replaced them. I lived in the town for 4 years between the ages of 14-18, (arguably the most difficult time for any female) so this place doesn’t hold many good memories for me. But it is a lovely place to visit.
If you go during peak season then it is super busy. Especially on the roads, as there’s a holiday park called Sandy Bay there. The park is fun but the beach is a big walk down a big hill due to the park being on top of a big cliff. So if you’re staying at the caravan park then go to the main beach front and not the little bit that the park owns.
I highly recommend going to Exmouth and walking along the Jurassic Coast, it is something rather special.