45 Fun Things to Do in the Lake District When it Rains

Things To Do In Lake District On a Rainy Day

Enjoy the Lake District on a rainy day with this guide to the best indoor and sheltered activities.

From historic houses and fascinating museums to indoor climbing and cosy cafes, there’s plenty to do in this beautiful part of Cumbria, even when the weather doesn’t cooperate.

Whether you’re looking for adventure, something to entertain the kids, or a quiet, relaxing spot, you’ll find something to enjoy.

So, put on your raincoat and get ready to discover all the Lake District offers, rain or shine.

Things To Do In Lake District On a Rainy Day

Cascades Spa, Leisure Club and Gym Swimming Pool
Cascades Spa, Leisure Club, Gym and Swimming Pool near Newby Bridge

1. The Cascades Health Spa & Fitness Club

Located in the Whitewater Hotel in Backbarrow, Newby Bridge, this spa offers luxurious treatments and fitness facilities, perfect for unwinding on a wet day.

Click here to find out more about this Newby Bridge Spa…

2. Keswick Climbing Wall

Situated in Keswick, this indoor climbing facility provides a range of climbing experiences suitable for all skill levels and is ideal for staying active indoors.

3. The Lakes Distillery Tour & Quiz!

This distillery, located near Bassenthwaite Lake, offers insightful tours and a quiz, making for an educational and enjoyable visit.

4. Beatrix Potter’s Home – Hill Top

Located Near Sawrey, this historic house museum preserves the setting of many of Beatrix Potter’s stories.

5. Alpacaly Ever After

Offering walks with alpacas at various locations, including the Lingholm Estate and Whinlatter Forest, this is a unique way to enjoy the Lake District’s natural beauty, rain or shine.

Wray Castle in the Cumbrian Lake District UK
Wray Castle

6. Wray Castle

This mock Gothic castle stands on the shores of Lake Windermere, featuring dramatic interiors and extensive grounds ideal for exploring between showers.

Lakeside & Haverthwaite Steam Railway Near Backbarrow in Cumbria
Lakeside & Haverthwaite Railway

7. Lakeside & Haverthwaite Railway

Running from Haverthwaite to Lakeside along the southern end of Lake Windermere, this heritage railway offers a nostalgic journey through scenic landscapes.

8. The Lakes Aquarium

Located on the southern shore of Windermere at Lakeside, this aquarium showcases both local and exotic marine and freshwater species.

9. Aira Force Waterfall

Situated near Ullswater, this famous waterfall offers a spectacular natural spectacle, especially impressive during or after rainfall.

10. Abbot Hall Art Gallery

This fine art gallery is located in Kendal, offering exhibitions of historical and contemporary art in an elegant Georgian setting.

11. The Keswick Brewing Co Brewery Tour

Based in Keswick, this brewery provides tours that detail the brewing process and offer samples of their craft ales.

12. Sizergh Castle

This stately home and garden, located near Kendal, features beautiful interiors and a rich history, with extensive grounds that are worth exploring even in damp weather.

13. Rydal Mount

Situated near Ambleside, this was once the home of the poet William Wordsworth. Visitors can explore the historic house and its beautiful gardens, which Wordsworth designed himself.

14. Brantwood, Coniston

Located on the eastern shore of Coniston Water, Brantwood offers insight into the life of John Ruskin, one of the most influential figures of the 19th century.

The house is filled with Ruskin’s drawings and writings.

Lake Windermere from Brockhole
Lake Windermere from Brockhole

15. Brockhole on Windermere

This visitor centre on the shores of Lake Windermere near Windermere town offers a range of activities, including indoor exhibitions and a café, making it a perfect spot for a rainy day.

16. Rheged Centre

Found near Penrith, this centre is known for its giant cinema screen showing educational and documentary films, exhibitions, and a variety of shops and eateries.

17. The Rum Story

Located in Whitehaven, this attraction is set in an original 1785 shop and takes visitors on a journey through the history of the rum trade and its connections to the area.

Lowther Castle in Cumbria
Lowther Castle

18. Lowther Castle

Near Penrith, the dramatic ruins of Lowther Castle are surrounded by extensive gardens and woodland, with a fascinating museum inside the stable courtyard detailing its history.

19. Castlerigg Stone Circle

Just outside Keswick, this prehistoric stone circle is one of Britain’s most atmospheric and dramatically sited, with panoramic views and a mysterious ambience, particularly in misty weather.

20. Ruskin Museum

In Coniston, this museum deepens into the area’s history and associations with notable figures like John Ruskin and Donald Campbell.

21. Keswick Museum

Located in Keswick, this museum features local history, geology, and culture, with interactive exhibits suitable for all ages.

22. The Dock Museum

Situated in Barrow-in-Furness, this museum tells the story of the town’s shipbuilding heritage and includes exhibits on the local area and its industrial past.

23. The Puzzling Place


In Keswick, this fun and quirky attraction features a gallery of optical illusions and interactive exhibits that challenge the senses, perfect for a family outing on a rainy day.

24. The Windermere Jetty Steamboats

Located on the shores of Lake Windermere in Bowness-on-Windermere, this museum displays a collection of historic steamboats and boats, offering indoor exhibits and covered boat rides.

25. Cruise With Ullswater Steamers

Departing from various points like Glenridding, Pooley Bridge, and Howtown, these steamers provide a relaxing way to enjoy the scenic beauty of Ullswater, shielded from the rain.

26. Manjushri Kadampa Meditation Centre

Situated in the peaceful surroundings of Conishead Priory near Ulverston, this centre offers a tranquil retreat with the opportunity for guided meditation and peaceful walks on the grounds.

A mountain goat tour of the Lake District
Mountain Goat Tours

27. A Mountain Goat Tour Around the Lake District

Starting from various locations, including Windermere, these guided tours around the Lake District offer a way to see the dramatic landscapes of the region from the comfort of a minibus, perfect for wet weather.

28. Kendal Museum

One of the oldest museums in the UK, located in Kendal, provides fascinating exhibits on natural history, geology, and local heritage.

Dove Cottage
The William Wordsworth Museum in Dove Cottage, Grasmere

29. The William Wordsworth Museum in Dove Cottage, Grasmere

Dove Cottage, the home of William Wordsworth from 1799 to 1808, is in Grasmere.

The museum adjacent to the cottage gives insights into the poet’s life and the Romantic Age.

30. Dalemain Mansion and Historic Garden

Near Penrith, this stately home offers beautifully preserved interiors and a collection of historical artefacts.

The gardens are also a treat, even in light rain.

Honister Via Ferrata
Honister Via Ferrata – Not for the faint-hearted!

31. Honister Via Ferrata

Located at Honister Pass near Keswick, this adventure activity involves climbing a route with a safety cable.

It can be an exhilarating experience, especially with the misty mountain backdrop typical of rainy days.

32. Sail Around Derwentwater With Keswick Launch

Operating from Keswick, this boat service allows you to hop on and off at various points around Derwentwater, offering sheltered views of the lake and its surroundings.

33. Kendal Climbing Wall

An excellent rainy day activity, this indoor climbing wall in Kendal caters to various skill levels, from beginners to experienced climbers.

Center Parcs Whinfell Forest Penrith
Center Parcs Whinfell Forest

34. Center Parcs Whinfell Forest

Located near Penrith, this holiday park offers a wide range of indoor activities, from swimming in a subtropical water park to spa treatments and indoor sports, making it perfect for all weather conditions.

35. Hayes Garden World

Located in Ambleside, this is one of the largest garden centres in the UK, featuring indoor displays of plants, garden tools, and home decor items, perfect for a leisurely browse away from the rain.

36. Ambleside Climbing Wall

Situated in Ambleside, this facility offers indoor climbing challenges for all abilities, making it a great spot for active fun on a wet day.

37. Wrap Up Well And Enjoy a Wet Walk In the Fells

The Lake District is known for its beautiful fells and walking paths, such as those around Ambleside, Keswick, or Grasmere.

Donning waterproof gear can turn a rainy hike into an exhilarating adventure.

38. Levens Hall

Located near Kendal, this historic house is famous for its beautiful gardens and topiary.

The hall itself provides a fascinating glimpse into several centuries of history.

39. Laurel And Hardy Museum

Found in Ulverston, the birthplace of Stan Laurel, this museum is dedicated to the famous comedy duo, offering memorabilia and films that are perfect for entertainment on a dreary day.

Keswick Pencil Museum
Keswick Pencil Museum

40. Keswick Pencil Museum

This unique museum in Keswick traces the history of pencil making and includes fascinating exhibits like a World War II secret pencil.

41. Kong Adventure – Keswick

Also located in Keswick, this indoor adventure centre offers climbing walls, a soft play area, and an escape room, making it ideal for families.

42. Holker Hall

Situated in Cark-in-Cartmel, this stately home offers tours of its grand rooms and a chance to explore its well-kept gardens, which are captivating even in the rain.

43. Blackwell – The Arts & Crafts House

Near Bowness-on-Windermere, this beautifully preserved house showcases the Arts and Crafts movement through its architecture and interior design.

44. Honister Slate Mine Tour

Located at the head of Honister Pass in Borrowdale, the mine offers a fascinating tour underground, perfect for learning about the history of slate mining and staying dry.

45. The Lakeland Motor Museum

Found in Backbarrow, near Ulverston, this museum features a diverse collection of vintage vehicles and motoring memorabilia, providing an engaging diversion for automobile enthusiasts.

Each location offers a unique way to experience the Lake District’s culture and history, ensuring plenty to do, rain or shine.

Whether indoor activities or covered outdoor options, these venues provide enjoyable and educational experiences.

Or… Vist the Whitewater Hotel for Afternoon Tea

Looking for Afternoon Tea South Lakes?

Located in the heart of the Lake District near Newby Bridge, the Whitewater Hotel offers a delightful afternoon tea experience.

Sitting on the stunning banks of the River Leven, the restaurant offers a selection of teas, sandwiches, cakes, and scones in a cosy setting, making it a perfect treat on a rainy day.

Whether you’re winding down after a day of exploring or just looking for a peaceful place to relax, the Whitewater Hotel provides a warm and welcoming atmosphere.

Click here to find out more about our Traditional English Tea…

Some Final Notes on Rainy Day Activities Lake District

Rainy days in the Lake District can be just as enjoyable as the sunny ones.

With so many indoor activities and covered attractions, you can explore the rich history, enjoy the arts, or get active, all while staying dry.

So don’t let the weather stop you; there’s always something wonderful to discover in the Lake District, making every visit memorable.

A Rainy Day in the Lake District

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