Study abroad in Exeter

Live in a historic city

Looking to study in city with a rich history, culture and beautiful scenery? Exeter is for you. It's in the heart of the West Country, a friendly and inviting part of England. Alongside its ancient landmarks, it still has a modern feel, thanks to a large student population. 

Exeter is a peaceful, scenic city, surrounded by stunning countryside and coastal views. There’s always plenty to do with good shopping, bars, restaurants, theatres and outdoor activities.

Find a course in Exeter

What makes Exeter unique?

  • Voted the 4th happiest place to live in the UK (Rightmove Survey 2014).
  • A city with unique historical landmarks and Gothic architecture.
  • Great for outdoor sports as it's close to the countryside.
  • Diverse cultural events including live music, theatre and arts.
  • Easy access to Exmouth Beach, North Devon and Cornwall for surfing.

Cost of living

After a few weeks of living in Exeter, you’ll begin to have a better understanding of what things cost. This is the ideal time to look at your finances and set your budget so you can keep track of your money.

The below figures are an estimated monthly budget for the main expenses you’ll have, excluding tuition and accommodation fees. The actual amounts you spend may vary but this is a useful guide.

  • Food – £170
  • Entertainment and social activities – £140
  • Travel (local) – £18
  • Clothes and toiletries – £60
  • Other expenses e.g. haircuts – £40

Food in Exeter

You’ll be spoilt for choice in Exeter with a wide selection of restaurants, cafes and bars. You'll find the Exeter Street Food Market in the Guildhall Shopping Centre each week, as well as regular Farmer's Markets throughout the city, where you can pick up local produce and seasonal fruit and vegetables. 

For a quick snack, there are delicatessens and cafes dotted throughout the city, as well as pubs and bistros serving delicious meals. Be sure to try some of the local specialities too, which include traditional cream teas with clotted cream, fudge and pasties.

You’ll easily find budget-friendly options in Exeter, thanks to its growing student population. In addition to well-known chain restaurants such as Las Iguanas, Yo! Sushi and Starbucks, Exeter also has some quirky cafes and restaurants to choose from.

Want a quick bite to eat? Head to Devon Coffee or Boston Tea Party which offer coffee, cakes and healthy options to satisfy hunger pangs. If you want something a bit more filling, the Avocet Cafe will provide you with a hearty all-day breakfast, delicious sandwiches or flavoursome soups.

Looking for vegetarian or vegan food? The Plant Cafe-Deli won’t disappoint, with a great range of veggie-friendly options such as rainbow-coloured salads and varied breakfast options.

The Old Fire House pub is a great spot for pizza as well as vegetarian and vegan options on the menu each week. And if you want to sample a classic Devonshire tea, then the Georgian Tea Room in Topsham is the perfect choice for a budget-friendly option.

Living on campus at the University of Exeter

Shopping in Exeter

The main shopping areas in Exeter are:

  • Princesshay Shopping Centre - where you'll find all the well-known mainstream brands and restaurants.
  • The West Quarter – a fashionable area with some of Exeter’s most distinctive and unique shops.
  • Gandy Street – a quirky cobblestone street with independent stores and boutique shops.
  • Cathedral Quarter – a selection of designer and independent stores.

Travel in and around in Exeter

The city centre is reasonably compact, to travelling around Exeter is easy. You’ll find walking or cycling is often the best way to get around. The university is a 15-minute walk from the city centre. 

Buses run regularly, with good routes between the university campus and the city. A weekly ticket is available which will give you unlimited bus travel around the city. For travel further afield, there are great rail links and the airport is around 25 minutes away.

A daily bus ticket will cost you between £1 and £4, and train tickets are from £4.20. As a student, you can benefit from a Unirider annual bus pass for £220, giving you unlimited bus travel in Exeter. A flight to London takes about three hours and prices start from around £35.

Ask us about your study options

Exeter's main attractions

Exeter is full of fun things to do, beautiful landmarks and amazing places to visit. Among them, you will find:

  • Exeter Cathedral
  • Exeter Phoenix Arts Centre
  • Medieval underground passageways
  • Historic quayside

Festivals and events

Exeter is home to some unique festivals and events, including:

  • Exeter Summer Festival - a mix of dance, live music, theatre and comedy.
  • Animated Exeter - a week-long event showcasing work from animators around the world.
  • Devon County Show - a three-day event held on the outskirts of the city with local food, crafts and activities. 
  • Exeter Festival of South West Food and Drink - an annual festival held at Northernhay Gardens and Exeter Castle.

Nightlife in Exeter

Exeter offers a selection of pubs and bars in the city centre, not far from the campus. Choices include The Cavern, The Monkey Suit, The Old Firehouse, Timepiece and Arena. 

On Saturdays, the campus club - The Lemon Grove - puts on a fun student night, and The Imperial is a popular pub located just off the Streatham Campus.

Employability in Exeter

Exeter may be a smaller city but it’s home to many employers, including the Met Office, EDF Energy, FlyBe, BT and NHS Devon.