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It’s the ultimate Devonshire holiday conundrum: what do we do in Devon when it’s raining? Much like the rest of the UK, weather conditions in Devon can vary from bright sunshine to heavy rain.

But fear not, if you do find yourself caught in a rainy day in Devon, we have compiled a list of our top indoor attractions and activities to keep you busy when the sun has gone into hiding and the rain is pouring.

Within this picturesque region you can look forward to discovering historical landmarks, exotic sea creatures and adrenaline-fuelled activities whilst the heavens are open outdoors, sure to brighten up even the rainiest of Devon cottage holidays!

Read on to discover 12 of our favourite things to do in Devon when it’s raining…


Things to do in North Devon when it’s raining

1. Arlington Court, Barnstaple 

Arlington Court

Resting on the edge of Exmoor is the Neo-classical property of Arlington Court.

Keep sheltered from the rain in Devon as you explore the sumptuous interiors which were decorated by John Crace in the late 1830s and enjoy the austere façade.

Look forward to exploring the homely interior and admire a cave of collections to uncover the passions the Chichester family including sea shells, model ships and pewter.

After working up an appetite exploring the house, indulge in a Devonshire cream tea served within the Old Kitchen tea-room.

Price: £13.60 for adults, £6.80 for child, £34.00 for family ticket.

Opening times: Monday – Sunday, 11am – 5.00pm

Website: www.nationaltrust.org.uk


2. Milky Way Adventure Park, Bideford

Milky Way Adventure Park

Whatever the weather, The Milky Way Adventure Park has it all!

Bring the entire family to this action-packed, award-winning centre located just five miles away from the North Cornwall border.

Here, you will find 110,000 sq. ft. of indoor fun that family of all ages and tastes will delight in.

Younger visitors will be delighted by the heart-stopping slides and indoor dodgems, while adults can kick back and enjoy some pottery painting and the Sci-Fi exhibit.

This superb indoor attraction also hosts live family-friendly live shows, featuring Merlin from Britain’s Got Talent and displays from the North Devon Bird of Prey Centre.

Price: £15.45 for adults and child (3-17), £7 for child (1-2), £11.45 for senior (65+)

Opening times: Open daily until 31st October 2019, Monday – Sunday, 10am – 5pm

Website: www.themilkyway.co.uk


Things to do in Plymouth when it’s raining

3. National Marine Aquarium, Plymouth

National Marine Aquarium

With over 4,000 ocean animals awaiting your arrival, what better what is there to spend a rainy day in Devon with your loved ones?

The National Marine Aquarium is located in the city of Plymouth and is renowned for being the UK’s largest aquarium. This Devon indoor activity promises to keep your little ones engaged with opportunities to learn about their favourite sea creatures and enjoy a voyage around the world, from the colourful Great Barrier Reef to the dramatic Atlantic Ocean, all the while keeping dry and away from the rain in Devon!

Look forward to enjoying an action-packed schedule which includes an interactive Dive Show every day at 2pm. After that, wander the relaxed environment and meet sharks, jellyfish, sting rays, octopuses and turtles.

Price: £16.95 for adults (16-59), £12.95 for children (3-15), £14.95 for senior citizens (60+), £53.50 for Family (2A+2C or 1A+3C), £14.50 for students.

Opening times: Open every day except for Christmas Day and Boxing Day (25th and 26th December), 10am – 5pm, last entry 4pm.

Website: www.national-aquarium.co.uk 


Things to do in Exeter when it’s raining

4. Powderham Castle, Exeter 

Powderham Castle

This majestic castle stands six miles away from the city of Exeter and is home to centuries of stories that visitors from across the country flock to uncover.

Spend the day exploring 600 years of history and heritage of the 14th century castle which was built by Sir Philip Courtenay.

Whilst here, enjoy a taste of Victorian life and experience a day’s work as a member of the household staff, or simply admire its collections of paintings and books and meet the people who have maintained this splendid property for many years.

Price: £12.95 for adults, £10.95 for students, £10.95 for children, £10.95 for senior/concession

Opening times: 24th March until the 1st November 2019, Sunday – Friday, 10am-5pm.

Website: www.powderham.co.uk

For more indoor activities in Exeter, have a browse through our Exeter travel guide for more holiday inspiration.


Things to do in Dartmoor when it’s raining

5. Buckland Abbey, Yelverton

Buckland Abbey

Enjoying a secluded spot near the village of Yelverton is this 13th century former monastery which was once the home of the explorer Sir Francis Drake.

Follow in the steps of the Cistercians who built the Abbey and the famous seafarer of Sir Richard Grenville, who converted the abbey church to a cosy Elizabethan house.

Look forward to admiring Grenville’s eccentric taste, exploring the three floors of the church tower and admiring the stained glass rescued from Reims Cathedral after World War I.

Price: £13.60 for adults, £6.80 for child, £34 for family

Opening times: Monday – Sunday, 11am – 5pm

Website: www.nationaltrust.org.uk


Things to do in South Devon when it’s raining

6. Kents Cavern, Torquay

Kents cavern

Kents Cavern is considered to be Europe’s top and most exciting Stone Age caves and promises to be the ideal all-weather attraction!

Explore a labyrinth of 400-million-year-old underground caverns and enjoy an adventure to the home of Britain’s earliest humans and Ice Age beasts.

Go back in time and imagine where people once made fires, hunted Ice Age animals and kept sheltered from the coldest weather conditions.

Tours will begin in the Vestibule Chamber and will lead you through the Long Arcade where the 14c temperature can be felt as you go on to discover the pretty stalagmites and stalactites that decorate the chamber.

Price: £12.00 for adults, £10.00 for children (3 – 15 years), £11.00 for seniors (65+)/students, £17.50 for annual membership.

Opening times: Monday – Sunday, 10.30am – 4pm.

Website: www.kents-cavern.co.uk 

For more things to do in Torquay, whatever the weather, browse our Torquay travel guide.


7. South Devon Railway

South Devon Railway

Embark on a journey across the stunning valley of the River Dart between Buckfastleigh and Totnes on the award-winning South Devon Railway.

During the rainy day look forward to passing through the glorious scenery of Devonshire’s dramatic coast and countryside, where you will be delighted by the rich wildlife, rolling hills and historical landmarks that await you along the way.

For those more special occasions, why not enjoy a Sunday Lunch or an afternoon tea during the journey? This is an ideal way to indulge in the local delicacies whilst soaking up the picturesque surroundings.

Price: £16 for adults, £9 for children (3-15), dogs £1

Website: www.southdevonrailway.co.uk


8. Sharpham Wine and Cheese, Totnes

Cheese and wine

During the wet Devon weather, perhaps skip the vineyard walk and head straight to the cheese and wine tasting!

If you and your loved one or a group of friends seek to sample a selection of classic English wines during one rainy afternoon, Sharpham vineyard promises to give you a wonderful taste of South Devon artisan produce.

Pair up your selection of four wines with three samples of award-winning cheeses accompanied by local chutney and savoury biscuits.

Then, spend your afternoon overlooking the River Dart whilst making up your own mind about which bottle to take home to enjoy later on.

The ultimate indoor attraction for adults!

Website: www.sharpham.com


9. Greenway House, Galmpton

Greenway House

Resting on the banks of the River Dart near Galmpton, is the home of the much-loved author Agatha Christie, Greenway House.

This National Trust owned property offers you a glimpse into the life of the author and where she and her family would have spent the summer holidays and Christmases.

During a Devon rainy day, wander the elegantly-styled rooms which are filled with a collection of books, botanical china and discover where three of the Queen of Crime’s novels were set. Complete your day by venturing down to the boat house and investigate the scene of crime of Dead Man’s Folly.

Price: £12.20 for adults, £6.10 for children, £30.50 for family ticket.

Opening times: Monday – Sunday, 10.30am – 5.00pm

Website: www.nationaltrust.org.uk


10. Torquay’s Dinosaur World, Torquay 

Torquay’s Dinosaur World

If you’re looking for things to do in Torquay when it’s raining, you can leave your umbrella at the door and step back in time to meet prehistoric monsters, discover fossils and take part in the Family Explorer Quiz to test your knowledge at this superb indoor exhibition, located centrally on Torquay harbour.

Dare to get close to the T-Rex Fossil Skull or be a palaeontologist for the day and dig the sand to uncover incredible fossils.

Young Explorers will be delighted by the interactive displays, the dinosaur teeth and the excellent gift shop where you can pick up real fossils, hatching dinosaur eggs and Torquay’s Dinosaur World t-shirts!

Price: £6.95 per person.

Opening times: Summer Season: Open every day including bank holidays, 11am – 5pm. Winter Season: Open Tuesday, Wednesday, Saturday and Sunday, 11am – 5pm.

Website: www.torquaysdinosaurworld.co.uk

Our Torquay travel guide offers plenty more suggestions on how you can spend a day out in Torquay.


11. Palace Theatre, Paignton

Palace Theatre Paignton

When it’s raining in Paignton and you’re looking for things to do, escape reality and take a seat to enjoy a sunnier moment!

Considered as Devon’s favourite community theatre, this superb theatre offers a varied programme of music, drama, comedy and celebrity appearances, offering something for all ages and tastes.

Box Office Opening hours: Monday – Friday, 11am – 3pm

Website: www.palacetheatrepaignton.co.uk

For more information about events and things to do in Paignton, have a look through our Paignton travel guide.


12. Bygones, Torquay

Bygones, Torquay

Step back in time and wonder a life-size Victorian Street filled with a collection of original items to keep you busy during a rainy afternoon in Torquay.

Immerse yourself in Victorian life by exploring the 15 shops along the period street. Smell the sweet-treats at the sweet-shop and visit the dentist with his foot-operated drill before stopping off at the top floor to admire the refurbished model railway which has been designed in remembrance of the First and Second World Wars.

Prices: £9.75 for adults, £7.25 for children, £29.95 for family

Website: www.bygones.co.uk


Alongside our selection of rainy day activities in Devon, you can keep sheltered from the rain by sampling some Devonshire produce by visiting Devon’s best pubs and cafés. Or if the sun happens to by shining one afternoon, enjoy one of the best walks in Devon. You can find lots of things to do in our Devon travel guide.


Image Credits: Becks(CC BY 2.0); Nilfanion – (CC BY-SA 4.0); Raymond Cocks – (CC BY 2.0); Iann Capper – (CC BY-SA 2.0);Matty Ring– (CC BY 2.0); Dan Davison – (CC BY 2.0); Leethomas787 – (CC BY-SA 4.0); Pill Sangwell – (CC BY 2.0) 

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