The Regatta is a fun, free and family-friendly day out that takes place in the heart of the city on the beautiful and historic Exeter Quayside. An annual event, it attracts hundreds of competitors of all ages and abilities to compete in over 100 sprint races along a 400m course. There is no admission charge for the day, and the event attracts many spectators who follow the close racing from the vantage point of the Quay and the cafes, restaurants and bars that line the course.
Races are rowed in a variety of boat classes from the single sculls, all the way up to the large sweep eights. Exeter is of the regattas that make up the West of England Rowing Championships for coxed fours and single sculls.
Rowing has been a very popular sport since the 19th Century, and Rowing has a long and successful history in Exeter. There was an Isca Boat Club rowing on the Exe and competing in the early 1800s, few details remain of their activities however records from Exeter Rowing Club show that both clubs were racing in 1864. The first meeting of the West of England Amateur Rowing Association was held in 1896 and in 1897 the City of Exeter Regatta became a WEARA event.