The Exeter Ship Canal
The Exeter Ship Canal is a delightful rural waterway running from the Exeter Quayside Canal Basin to its junction with the River Exe at Topsham. The canal is ideal for canoeing and rowing. Pleasure boats run cruises during the summer months.
The canal banks are favourite places for walkers, cyclists, fishermen and birdwatchers. There are several pubs along the way for refreshments and access car parks along the length of the canal.
The “Dutch” Topsham Village is well worth exploring.
This canal has an extraordinary history and is a testament to resourcefulness. The fast flowing and navigable River Exe brought ships and trade to Exeter making it an extremely wealthy port.
The Earls of Devon's Weirs
In 1558 the Earls of Devon decided they could waylay the ships by building weirs across the river. This forced the ships to unload at Topsham where the Earls could exact large tolls to transport goods to Exeter.
The canal was cut to by-pass the weirs and put a stop to this practice. It was a successful commercial waterway until the mid 19th century when the railway took over for transporting goods. Now it is being reborn as a leisure facility.
For suggested walks go to Web: Exeter City Council/ Canal Walks External Link
There are several pubs available including the pink pub ‘The Bridge Inn’ as well as the Double Locks Inn and the Turf Hotel.
Pleasure boat trips leave from Exeter Quay and Topsham daily from April - September. See Exeter Boat Trips in this website for contact information and web address.
Accommodation - Search & Book through Booking.com here: External Link
Contact & Further Information
Exeter Ship Canal External Link
Google Map - The Exeter Ship Canal