If you are looking for things to do in Exmouth UK, then you have come to the right place. This charming seaside town on the south Devon coast is packed full of fun and interesting things to do.
Whether you are planning to spend a week along the Devonshire coast or you are passing through and looking for a few things to do in Exmouth for a day or two, this list will cover plenty of fun sights to check out.
We personally love to get out in the great outdoors in the UK, so we lean more towards great hikes, the best beaches, and getting out on the water by kayak or SUP, but we also appreciate a wonderful museum, a rainy day indoor activity, and historical sights in each area we visit.
We hope you find our guide to the best things to do in Exmouth helpful.
Exmouth, Devon is a picturesque seaside resort town at the mouth of the River Exe in England’s west country. Here you will find two miles of sandy beach which is a popular water sports destination. Kayaking, kite surfing and windsurfing are three popular activities on offer within easy reach of the town.
The town itself dates back to at least the 11th Century and has been a vibrant port town since its inception. The English explorer Sir Walter Raleigh set off on many of his journeys from the port here. There is an indoor market and plenty of independent shops selling a wide variety of local crafts and delicacies.
Want to know what to do in Exmouth? Read on and find out about the best Exmouth activities and attractions!
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Getting to Exmouth
By car: Exmouth is easily reachable from London via the M3 and A303. The 175-mile journey takes 3h45m by car. What’s more, the route even takes you right next to Stonehenge so be sure to keep your eyes peeled!
By bus: There are buses to nearby Exeter from London taking from five hours with tickets starting at £28.00 one-way. From Exeter bus station (Stand 3) take the 57 to Exmouth. The journey time is around 40 minutes. Check bus times and book tickets here.
By train: Trains for Exmouth (with one change in Exeter) depart London Paddington several times per hour. Tickets start at £31.00 one way and the journey time is around three hours depending on which train you catch. Check train times and book tickets on the Trainline here.
By plane: With Exeter International Airport just 23 miles from Exmouth, and Bristol International 71 miles, it’s easy to reach Exmouth from the rest of the UK or Europe by plane. Check flight prices on Kiwi here.
Top Exmouth Tourist Attractions
- Exmouth Beach
- Sea kayaking
- Lifeboat station
- River Exe Cruise
- Fossil hunting
- Exmouth Museum
- Exmouth Indoor Market
- Sea Dog Art Gallery
- Hawkridge Bird of Prey Centre
- Manor Gardens
- A La Ronda House
- Exmouth to Lympstone trail
- Hike the Exe Trail
- Powderham Castle
There are so many great things to do in Exmouth, these are just a few of our absolute favorites.
1. Enjoy Exmouth Beach
One of the best things to do in Exmouth is to visit its famous two-mile stretch of golden, sandy beach. Whether you plan on catching some rays, splashing about in the ocean or looking for sea life inside the many rock pools, there is something to keep everyone occupied.
For those looking for a little more adventure, Exmouth beach is a popular destination for kite and windsurfing. There are some great walks along the sea which form part of the South West Coast Path and there is also a promenade with shops, cafes, pubs and restaurants.
2. Go on an Exmouth Sea Kayaking Adventure
If you want to really experience the best of Exmouth from the ocean, then join one of the sea kayaking tours. Sea Kayak Exmouth offers a variety of trips from half a day and full day to overnight adventures. They also offer a range of courses from beginner to advanced.
Prices start from £46 for a half-day tour to £180 for a two-day course. Kayaking is really one of the best Exmouth things to do and a great way to see this splendid stretch of coastline in a different light.
3. See the Exmouth Lifeboat Station
Exmouth has had a working lifeboat helping the area’s fishermen and seafarers for over 200 years. The lifeboat station was upgraded in 2010 and now includes a visitor centre and shop, with free tours at the weekend.
Learn how these brave men and women of Exmouth volunteer to help keep everyone safe out on the water.
The visitor centre and lifeboat shop is open from 10 am to 5 pm in the summer and 11 am to 4 pm in the winter. The free tours of the lifeboat station are hourly between 10:30 am and 3:30 pm on Saturdays and Sundays.
4. Take a Cruise on the River Exe
One of the most fun things to do in Exmouth is to take a cruise on the River Exe. The wetlands around the river are a Site of Special Scientific Interest and a rich habitat for oystercatchers and other bird and marine life.
Stuart Line Cruises offer a host of different options from a 90-minute estuary cruise to longer journeys up to Exeter, train and boat combos, and even a “cream tea cruise”. You can view the timetable and book tickets online on the Stuart Line website.
5. Go Fossil Hunting Along the Jurassic Coast
Exmouth is situated right on the doorstep of the world-famous Jurassic Coast. On this UNESCO-listed stretch of coastline, you can see the exposed cliffs which chart the area’s 185-million-year-old history.
One of the most fun things to do near Exmouth is to comb these ancient beaches looking for fossils. You can start at Exmouth Beach and make your way east along the coast. If you are lucky you might be able to spot some prehistoric crustaceans, insects or shark teeth.
6. See the Exhibits at Exmouth Museum
Looking for things to do in Exmouth in the rain? A great option is to discover the history of the town and surrounding area at the Exmouth Museum. The museum is run by knowledgeable volunteers and charts Exmouth’s rich history and connections to the sea.
The entrance to the museum is £2.50 for adults and children go free. Open Monday to Thursday 10:00am to 4:00pm and Saturday 10:00am to 1:00pm.
7. Shop at Exmouth Indoor Market
Exmouth Indoor Market has been open since 1980 and is home to over 30 market stalls selling a wide range of local handicrafts and fresh produce. The market is open Monday to Saturday from 9:00 am to 5:00 pm.
8. View the Paintings at the Sea Dog Art Gallery
If you are looking for a little slice of Bohemia, then be sure to head to Anna’s Sea Dog Art Gallery. This small gallery is packed with vibrant paintings where explosions of colour jump from the canvas and fill the room.
If you are looking for things to do in Exmouth in the rain, this is a great option and you can easily while away a few hours discovering the works of this renowned local artist.
9. Get Hands-On at the Hawkridge Bird of Prey Centre
One of the best Exmouth attractions for the whole family is the Hawkridge Bird of Prey Centre. Set within 100 acres of land in the beautiful south Devon countryside, the centre is open 365 days a year and offers real, hands-on experiences with these magnificent raptors and owls.
Have a go at the one-hour handling session where you can learn about how the birds are trained. This is a great place to get some Instagram-worthy pictures up close and personal with these beautiful creatures!
Tours and handling sessions are by appointment only and can be booked online. Prices start from £35 per person for the one-hour handling session. Also, be sure to check the website as the centre hosts year-round events.
10. Take Time Out in Manor Gardens
This small public park a few minutes’ walk from the beach is a great place to sit and relax if you are looking for an escape from the hustle and bustle of the beach or town. The gardens were once part of a manor house and have been here since the 1800s.
If you don’t want a lot of sand in your sandwiches, then Manor Gardens is a great alternative to the beach for a picnic. There is also a café serving light refreshments and snacks. Entrance to the park is free and it is open year-round.
11. Marvel at the Unique A La Ronde House
If you are searching for unusual things to do in Exmouth, then be sure to head to A La Ronde, a unique 16-sided stone dwelling packed to the rafters with curiosities. The houses were built for two sisters upon their return from travelling the world and is home to many interesting artifacts acquired on their travels.
A La Ronde is set within beautiful grounds overlooking the rolling countryside of the Exe valley. The house and gardens are open from 10:30 am to 3:30 pm and there is an onsite second-hand bookshop and takeaway kiosk selling refreshments and snacks. Tickets cost £9.50 for adults and £4.75 for children.
12. Take A Stroll from Exmouth to Lympstone
This relaxing 2.3-mile walk will take you along the eastern banks of the Exe Estuary and through the wetlands, marshes and mudflats. Here you will be able to see an assortment of wading and migratory birds and other wildlife such as seals and otters.
The Exmouth to Lympstone route is an easy hike suitable for all ages and levels of fitness. If you don’t fancy walking back to Exmouth, you can hop on the train at Lympstone for the five-minute ride back along the estuary.
Things to do Near Exmouth
Thanks to its great location at the mouth of the estuary, there are plenty of things to do near Exmouth. From coastal hikes, secluded beaches and gothic castles, there are plenty of great attractions within a stone’s throw of the town.
13. Hike or Cycle the Exe Trail
If the above Exmouth to Lympstone walk is a little too easy, then more experienced hikers can hit the Exe Trail. The Exe Estuary Trail is a 22.5-mile stretch of flat path along both sides of the estuary from Exmouth to Dawlish (with an option to go into Exeter city).
Thanks to the flat going, the trail is perfect for cycling, which takes around two hours to complete. If you want to walk the whole thing you are looking at seven to eight hours, but there are plenty of options to hop on and off the trail and return by bus, boat or train.
The trail takes in some of Devon’s most beautiful countryside and villages with many opportunities for wildlife spotting. There are plenty of cafes and pubs along the route perfect for lunch, or take a picnic with you and enjoy this area of outstanding natural beauty!
Head to Exmouth Cycle Hire where you can rent a mountain bike for £20 for a half-day or £28 for the full day (helmet, lock, pump and map included in the price).
14. Enjoy a Day Out at Powderham Castle
This medieval castle makes for an excellent day out for history lovers and families alike. Set within beautiful gardens on the west bank of the Exe Estuary, Powderham Castle is easily reachable from Exmouth.
The grounds include the magnificent gothic castle, dating back 600 years, walled gardens, a lake, gallery, chapel and café. There are daily guided tours, or you can just mooch about on your own exploring one of Britain’s most impressive historical sites.
An adult day ticket for the castle and grounds costs £12.95 and children £10.95. You can also opt for a ticket for just the grounds. Open from Sunday to Friday.
15. Visit Nearby Dawlish
The small seaside town of Dawlish is just 3.5 miles up the coast from Exmouth and is well worth a visit. From the stunning Warren Beach and nature reserve to the town trail, shops, cafes and pubs, Dawlish makes an excellent day trip from Exmouth.
It’s a 40-minute drive along the estuary or 50 minutes by train between Exmouth and Dawlish.
Visit Exmouth Today!
As one of Britain’s oldest seaside resorts, Exmouth Devon is the perfect place to relax on the beach, enjoy a variety of water sports, search for million-year-old fossils, enjoy local food and relax in one of the warmest areas of the UK. So what are you waiting for, book your trip today?!