It is raining again, but fear not! We have created this resource of the best places to go on a rainy day with Brisbane Kids.
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Best Places to go on a rainy day in Brisbane with Kids
One of the best ways to engage the whole family on a rainy day is to grab some socks and head out for a game of tenpin bowling. Suitable for all ages to have a go, bowling is a bit of retro fun that the whole family can enjoy together.
Not only can you partake in a spot of competitive fun with the kids, but most venues in and around the city offer additional entertainment, too – and all UNDER the same roof! Whether that is laser tag or arcade games, you can go for just a quick game until the showers pass, or you can settle in for the whole day if the rain has to.
Don’t worry if you have young kids, as most modern bowling alleys have programmable bumpers (they cover the gutters) and special ball delivery contraptions. We regularly see kids under five bowling at our local bowling alley.
You can check out the Best Places to go Bowling in Brisbane here.
Ice skating and Roller skating
Another fantastic indoor activity that has entertained families since we were little kids is a visit to the local ice skating or rollerskating rinks.
I think people forget the joy of skating. You don’t have to be a superstar on skates either to have fun; with assistance from gliders and different times allocated for different ability levels, the kids will get active, learn new skills, and you can escape the rain for a few hours.
Workshops Rail Museum
A short 30-minute drive from Brisbane lies the city of Ipswich, which is home to some brilliant wet weather venues. The Workshops Rail Museum is home to a vast collection of vintage trains, an impressive miniature railway and the newly created Sciencentre. Long-standing and hugely popular, this museum is a must-see for any young railway buff – and even those that aren’t. For those of us coming from Brisbane, you might want to take note of a drive-thru coffee place in Brisbane and swing past on your way to Ipswich.
Queensland Museum, State Library and GOMA
Both are alongside each other in South Brisbane; they are an easy train or bus ride away (or a park if you want to drive) and offer a complete visual feast that kids will adore. Kids can learn about our native flora and fauna, get up close and personal with dinosaur bones, and check out the discovery centre with their live insects and reptiles.
On the other hand, the Gallery of Modern Art (GOMA) is renowned for its fascinating exhibits. At the Children’s Gallery, kids can get hands-on and creative with activities that usually complement the leading gallery exhibition. The Children’s Gallery resides within the GOMA building, usually downstairs or depending on the exhibition, will have a room off the side of the current exhibit. Check out our calendar if you want to know what is showing at GOMA.
Finally, situated between the Queensland Museum and GOMA is the Queensland State Library, offering multiple levels of books and home to ‘The Square’, a fun and interactive space for children to enjoy reading and playing.
Plaster Fun House
A firm wet weather favourite for kids (and parents) who love to paint, Plaster Fun House in Belmont offers families the chance to pick out their favourite plaster character, paint it and then take it home afterwards. With some drinks and food available on-site, you can settle in for a few hours – depending on how dedicated your little artists are.
When the weather turns sour, one of the more popular and well-known hangouts is your local play centre or indoor entertainment venue. Popular with kids because it can provide hours of entertainment and is popular for adults who can enjoy a warm beverage and meal. The only downfall of indoor play centres is how busy these places can get on a rainy day.
Our advice – call ahead to check how full the venue is and plan to head in early!
The plus side is that there are quite a few indoor playgrounds to choose from and you are sure to have a couple to choose from in your local area. For more information, you can check out our list of Indoor Fun Centres here.
If your kids are more like teenagers and looking for something a little more challenging to pass their time, consider checking out one of the Brisbane escape room venues that have popped up all over the place! With increasing popularity, these rooms challenge a small group to find clues and solve a puzzle that will enable them to exit the locked room.
The puzzles are not as simple as they seem, and a time limit on how long you have to solve them makes for a great bonding session and much excitement when (if) you manage to get out.
Check out our list of the best escape rooms in Brisbane here
No longer limited to the infamous Kangaroo Point Cliffs, indoor rock climbing is hugely popular, and it’s not hard to see why. Not only is it a great way for kids to challenge themselves and have fun it is also an excellent way to get fit while also challenging the mind.
With so many rock climbers becoming fantastic Ninja Warriors, many rock climbing venues also have Ninja Warrior courses that the kids can enjoy. I dare you all not to get hooked!
For more information on indoor rock climbing venues, check out our article on rock climbing with kids in Brisbane.
Indoor Go Karting
Recommending go-karting as a wet weather activity for kids may seem a little dangerous, but not when I am talking about the indoor go-karting track, Slideways Go Karting.
With a massive, multi-level drift track featuring 425m of adrenalin pumping action, a pair of second-level structures and an all-weather outdoor loop, this is the rainy day idea for those families with older kids looking for a bit of an adrenalin hit. If your children are 11 years or older and at least 145cm tall, consider this incredible track when next you are stuck for rainy day ideas.
Retro games and old-school indoor arcades are popping up all over Brisbane, and they are more affordable than you think. Many with all-day play cards and an unbelievable variety of familiar games, this will be an unexpected thing to do with the kids when it is raining. You will find some arcade venues in our Indoor Entertainment resource.
Head to the library
Brisbane and Ipswich libraries are about more than just books! Many of them have dedicated kids’ spaces and run activities for locals. You can also borrow DVDs and books to make the fun last at home or even borrow toys for play at home. The Ipswich Children’s Library is a beautiful spot to visit for a whole library dedicated just to children.
Head to the cinema for an outing out of the weather. Movies are always a popular wet weather activity and kids’ movies today are just as entertaining for parents. Shop around for tickets first Cinebuzz and Other Movie Saving Ideas (Cineplex’s children’s tickets are $7)
Indoor Activities for a Rainy Day
Have a dress-up day
Pull out all the costumes you have and dress up or head to a local op shop and grab some for next to nothing.
Get your sheets, blankets and pillows and build a comfy fort or cubby. Grab some torches and books for a complete camping vibe.
Cooking and Baking
Make some treats – packet mixes work, or try to teach your kids some old family recipes. Even something as simple as popcorn made old-school can be a hit!
Google “How to draw” and get drawing with the kids and their favourite animals. Step-by-step videos will have everyone feeling very accomplished with their result.
Go through the house and maybe the recycle bin (or pop to your local fruit shop). Use cardboard boxes and old bottles to build a city or even an old-style village complete with roads and bridges.
Measure the rain
Make the most of the rain and make a homemade rain gauge – ask the kids to write down their predictions on how much rain they think will rain in the next 24 hours.
Break out the board games
Old and new, it doesn’t matter! Everyone gets to pick their favourite, make some snacks and get playing!
Bring out the cards
A fun activity with toddlers on a rainy day is to teach them to play snap or Go Fish.
Make a time capsule
Time capsules are such a fun activity. Find an old soft drink bottle and fill it with photos, trinkets and a journal entry from each kid. Bury/hide somewhere for at least five years!
Whether the sun is out or not, Brisbane offers families exciting and fun rainy day adventures to help keep everyone entertained.
It wouldn’t be an ultimate list without referring you to the Official Guide to Child-Friendly Brisbane with our What’s on in Brisbane Calendar, which you can find on our website.