Exeter is an iconic and wonderful city, ready to be explored by all the new fresh and returning students. Here is a month-by-month guide to everything that’s happening throughout the year that you need to get involved in.
If you’re not quite ready to let go of summer yet and are still reminiscing about sunbathing on that tropical Bali beach or the gorgeous Italian lake you just visited, consider catching the train down to Exmouth to enjoy some sun, beach games and yummy Devonshire ice-cream. The sea temperature is at its warmest in September so you may as well have a splash around while you can!
As an autumnal feel begins to spread across campus, it might just be time to go beyond your Exeter bubble. Just a 20-minute train ride away, Topsham offers some charming cafes and pubs to relax in with friends, as well as a remarkably large antiques shop. October is also a mysterious and magical month, and seeing as our famous alumni J.K. Rowling was so inspired by her university town, make sure to explore the Chamber of Secrets (girl’s toilets in Washington Singer), Diagon Alley (Gandy Street) and the Leaky Cauldron (Old Firehouse) – it would be rude not to!
Each year, the greatest spectacle ever hosted on bonfire night takes place in a quaint little village just outside of Exeter. Become a true ‘Devonian’ for the night by joining the locals in Ottery St. Mary to watch men, women and children wrapped in layer upon layer of rugby shirts and oven gloves, run through the streets (note: literally meaning through the crowds) with flaming tar barrels on their backs. It’s a bonfire night like no other!
Located in an idyllic setting at the heart of the city-centre on Cathedral Green, Exeter’s Christmas Markets cannot be missed. Listen to the carol singers and bands perform whilst browsing the stalls selling local, handmade and original gifts, and afterwards, you can warm up by enjoying some mulled wine down at Firehouse.
Hoping to join that ‘New Year New Me’ fitness hype but don’t quite know how? Why not sign up for the Riverside Park-run with your friends. Held every Saturday morning, the 5km run offers the perfect start to your weekend, and afterwards you can enjoy a well-deserved brunch at Boston Tea Party, an Exeter student’s favourite haunt. Or if you don’t quite fancy running in the chilly January air, take advantage of reduced membership fees at the gym on campus and you’ll already be half way to completing those New Year resolutions.
Looking to attend the biggest #bleedgreen event of the year? Then look no further than February’s fantastic Rugby Varsity. Hosted at Exeter Chiefs’ Rugby Ground, our rugby 1s put on a brilliant show against Bath University, with the added entertainment of our very own fabulous cheerleaders. Make sure to buy your Exeter snapback or beanie in time, or for those of you who really don’t suit hats, opt for the classic choice of green glitter.
With the end of your second term fast-approaching and countless deadlines flying at you faster than you can say sweet potato fries, your ultimate stress mode may be beginning to hit. Yet if the library atmosphere seems just that little bit too intense, some of the cafes in town may become your new favourite revision spots. Artigiano, Glorious Art House and Coffee#1 are just a few favourites among many to settle down with a delicious coffee (in an Instagrammable mug) and your deadline reading.
As Easter draws nearer many sports seasons begin to come to an end, yet of course in Exe they wouldn’t finish off without a bang. End of Season Dinners are a fantastic way to celebrate a successful season, with fine food, questionable speeches and flowing wine. Even if you’re not sporty, attending as a plus one can be sure to guarantee some evening entertainment.
Exam-season has hit and your rates of social interaction are higher with your books than actual human beings, but remember the importance of taking relaxing revision breaks. A walk or cycle down by the Quayside is the perfect way to give your brain a little rest from studying and soak in the fresh air.
With exams over and a three-month summer ahead of you, make sure you stick around for a few weeks before heading home. If you’re up for some light-hearted, sporty fun, register a team of friends into Touch Duckes for either touch rugby or rounders. And as for the big end of year send off, grab your ticket for The Enchanted Garden Ball, a wonderful, ‘festival-feel’ evening filled with bouncy castles, dodgems, a silent disco, karaoke and more.