Ten things to do with kids on a rainy day in Devon

If you’ve chosen Devon for your family holiday, you’re in for a treat. Come rain or shine, there’s no end of fun to be had.

We’ve rounded up the top days out which you can enjoy with the children when the weather is wet, so don’t let the rainy day blues get you down!

1. Powderham Castle, Exeter

Powderham Castle is one of Devon’s oldest family homes, set in a beautiful deer park alongside the River Exe. Take a guided tour of the inside of the castle and wonder in awe at the elegant rooms as you are regaled by stories of the Courtenay family who live there to this day.

If the sun comes out, there’s plenty outside too. The Walled Garden Play Area and Pets Corner are sure to delight the little ones, and once everyone is worn out, take a break in the Courtenay Café.

Powderham Castle

2. The Milky Way Adventure Park, Higher Clovelly

The Milky Way Adventure Park is perfect for a rainy day, with 110,000 square feet of indoor fun! There are slides, rides and play areas galore to suit all ages, from tiny toddlers to older children. Little ones will love the Little Starz soft play area and slides, games, sand pit and ride-on tractors of Toddler Town and Fantasy Farm.

Older ones will enjoy chasing each other around on the bumper cars, thrilling death slides and the Cosmic Typhoon and Cosmic Caterpillar roller coasters if the weather brightens up.

Throughout the day there are scheduled shows both indoors and outdoors, including Galaxy Showtime with Britain’s Got Talent star Merlin Cadogan and the Nerd Alert! Science Show.

3. Kents Cavern, Torquay

Deep underground, Kents Cavern maintains a constant temperature year-round so it’s the perfect place to escape the rain and learn about one of the most important Stone Age sites in Europe. The guided tour will take you through the different chambers of the cave which was formed 2.5 million years ago. Discover the bones and teeth of ancient Ice Age animals which lived there, and experience what it’s like when the lights go out!

4. Ice skating at the Plymouth Pavilions, Plymouth

Get your skates on at Plymouth’s very own ice skating rink! Glide around the real ice rink and feel the rush of wind in your hair. For those who aren’t too confident on the ice, there are skating aids available to hire in the shape of seals, polar bears and penguins, catering for everyone from under-fives to adults.

Once you’ve finished ‘chilling out’, pop into town for a bite to eat at one of the many nearby restaurants, or book a show at the Plymouth Pavilions for later.

5. National Marine Aquarium, Plymouth

Save the National Marine Aquarium for a very wet day, as you can spend hours enjoying everything there is to see inside. There are talks and feeds throughout the day, where you’ll learn about underwater creatures great and small, from sharks, to coral!

The huge Eddystone Reef tank makes even fully-grown adults feel tiny, as hordes of fish swim up and down the largest single-tank viewing panel in the UK. Pause for lunch at the Waves Café to recharge your batteries for the afternoon and stop in the shop to pick up a souvenir from your underwater adventure.

National Marine Aquarium, Plymouth

6. Royal Albert Memorial Museum, Exeter

A fascinating museum bursting to the seams with ancient artefacts and interesting exhibits, the RAMM is a great option for families with older children. Telling the story of Devon and Exeter’s rich history and global connections, it is home to all manner of intriguing items, from mummified remains to exotic animals.

The museum provides respite from a day of shopping in the cathedral city of Exeter, and offers a whole host of delicious eateries nearby.

7. A la Ronde, Exmouth

A la Ronde is a quirky little sixteen-sided house built for two spinster cousins, Jane and Mary Parminter when they returned from a grand tour of Europe in the late 18th Century. It houses thousands of objects and mementoes which they brought back from their travels and won’t fail to captivate both adults and children alike. Wander through the magical rooms where you’ll find treasures such as walls decorated with feathers and shells, unusual works of art, diamond shaped windows and curiosities including Inuit models to an emu egg!

There are various events for families throughout the year, so check what’s on before you go.

8. Ilfracombe Aquarium, Ilfracombe

Located in the Old Lifeboat House next to the historic harbour, Ilfracombe Aquarium is home to over 75 species of fish from the local coast. Providing the ideal shelter from a shower, pop into the aquarium for half an hour where the children will find entertainment in the fish, fun quizzes and feeding demonstrations by experienced guides.

9. Waves Leisure Pool, Torquay

If the weather’s wet, why not get wetter?Waves Leisure Pool has a sloping floor so offers easy access for little ones, and with a flume, wave machine, water-play activity centre, toddler slide and water jets, there’s something for all ages. Relax in the warm 30°c water and forget about the rain outside!

10. House of Marbles, Bovey Tracey

The House of Marbles is more than just a shop, it’s a Devon institution and a must-visit attraction if you’re staying in the area. Intricate marble runs, animated animals, a giant floating marble and glass blowing in the glass works make for a fascinating few hours with something unusual around every corner.

The shop sells quality toys and glass pieces which have been made onsite and we’d be surprised if you manage to leave without buying even one marble for the children! The café sells a delicious range of cakes and lunches, so is perfect for a tea break or a light bite.

coffee cake

Our Devon cottages are situated all across the county, from the moors to the coast and everywhere in between. If you can’t bring yourself to venture outdoors in the wet weather, make the most of your holiday cottage – some have swimming pools and games facilities which will have you hoping for an excuse to stay in!

Posted by Clare Willcocks on 26th October 2017