Wandering around Princesshay in Exeter, you’d be forgiven for believing that there is nothing to see below ground level. In fact, hidden deep below the pavement lies Exeter’s best kept secret – a maze of passages dating back to the 14th Century.
Originally built to pipe clean water into the city, Exeter’s Underground Passages are the only place in the UK where you can get up close and personal to this kind of medieval engineering. The Passages are steeped in history, from the Black Death all the way through to the Exeter Blitz.
Dark, narrow, and extremely atmospheric, exploring the Passages is not for the faint hearted! But adventurous souls both young and old are sure to enjoy this extraordinary subterranean experience – a whole world away from the busy, bustling streets overhead.
The experience allows you to follow in the footsteps of almost two centuries of visitors and trace the fingerprints of 14th Century workmen. The Passages are a unique monument to Exeter’s heritage – and an out-of-the-ordinary way to pass an afternoon.
Currently, 80% of the Passages are open to the public. However, there are exciting plans ahead – with the predicted opening of even greater lengths of the tunnels to visitors, and additional activities in the pipeline, such as films, specialist events, music, and even ghost tours, the passages will be an experience not to miss.
With a fascinating museum as well as engaging and interactive guided tours of the tunnels themselves, you are sure to come away from the Underground Passages with a newfound understanding of Exeter and its unique and chequered history.