There isn’t much worse than planning a family vacation just to have it ruined by unforeseen circumstances. While there are some things you do have control over, a rainy day is not one of them.
I had planned the perfect spring break. My husband had a business conference while the kids were off from school, only leaving us a few days as a family. We found the perfect solution. We would stay in Amelia Island, Florida so that he could enjoy a few days with us before driving thirty minutes to his conference. Then I would enjoy the next three days relaxing on the beach with the kids.
All went according to plan at first. The hotel, the Omni Amelia Island Plantation resort, was absolutely beautiful. Under the sunshine of the first two days of our stay, our one bedroom condo was huge and beautifully furnished. It had views of the beach and we spent our first evening on the balcony, watching the surf crash twenty feet from our window. The resort had close to ten outdoor pools, one by each condo building, and we chose to hang out at the largest pool by the main hotel. It was right by the wide beach, whose water was too rough and cold to swim in, but whose beach was perfect for gathering shells and building sand forts.
Murphy’s law of parenting will tell you that the best laid plans seldom go off without a hitch. I felt the first raindrop as we said goodbye to my husband on Monday morning. Within the hour, it was a torrential downpour. No more beach. No more pool. It was time for plan B – we still wanted to enjoy our rained out beach vacation.
The hotel concierge was surprisingly unhelpful in helping me come up with some rainy day activities. “This is really more of a warm weather kind of place. Hopefully the rain will ease off soon,” he said doubtfully peering up at the menacing dark sky. I took my three kids back to the room, and began to plan some fun in the rain.
If you’re ever stranded at the resort due to a rained out beach vacation, here are a few ideas to google keep the fun and sanity going.
Take nature indoors. Amelia Island Plantation Resort has a nice little nature center with some rescued animals in cages and some very knowledgeable naturalists on staff. It is normally the place to plan outdoor excursions, but can be a wonderful place to waste away a few rainy day hours.
Any Museum Can Be Fun – Don’t Limit Yourself to Children’s Museums. Check for other nearby museums, no matter how obscure. Doing a scavenger hunt at a local coin collecting museum can still be an unexpected source of fun.
Mini-Golf Through the Raindrops – A game of mini golf can be a blast in a drizzle, and often have mini-arcades in case of unexpected downpours. Head to the nearest course for some speed golf in the rain.
Walmart and Target Are More Fun on Vacation – When all else fails, head to a big box store to let the kids pick out an inexpensive toy each. You can even turn the visit into an impromptu scavenger hunt or math lesson. Stock up on board games, playing cards, and stories to read together.
Matinee at the Movies – Many movie theaters add matinee screenings on rainy days in beach towns. Find the nearest theater and give them a call to get the latest showtimes.
- Fun in the Rain – Venturing out in the rain can be quite an adventure. The world is a different place, especially the beach, when the sky opens up. And if there is no thunder and lightning, a heated pool may be the best place to kill a few hours. Might as well get fully wet when it’s raining!