A rainy day in Cornwall…
Family fun in wet weather
We can’t pretend it’s always sunny here. After all, how would Cornwall have its beautiful gardens without a splash of rain? When you’re on holiday with the kids, the prospect of keeping everyone entertained (and reasonably dry) can be a daunting one. But never fear! There’s plenty to do in St Ives on a wet day.
Here are some of our tried-and-tested rainy day activities for families.
Find an indoor playground
Our new onsite indoor soft play has been a huge success. Families can chill out at Polmanter on rainy days, as the kids let off steam in the dry. Follow it with a relaxed meal in the bar, and you have the perfect wet-weather holiday afternoon.
The largest soft play close to St Ives is at Paradise Park in Hayle. As well as the wildlife park there’s a great soft play area in the Jungle Barn (which also serves coffee and snacks for watching parents). It’s suitable for all ages, and there’s a separate area for little ones. Most of the local kids have grown up here, and it’s definitely a firm family favourite. Our tip is to go early to bag a table for your group, as it does get very busy.
St Ives’ arty nature makes it the perfect place to get creative. Barnoon Workshop (above the Tate) runs a range of workshops for all ages and abilities. There are three workshops a week aimed at kids, and this year’s programme includes pebble art and postcard printing. For slightly older young artists, have a look at what’s on at St Ives School of Painting (although this can’t be an on-spec day out – please contact them in advance to book). In town, you can paint a pot (and eat homemade cake) at 54 Lemons, or enroll on a chocolate making workshop at I Should Coco. Food definitely has a large part to play on rainy days…!
One of West Cornwall’s latest attractions for families is Jump4, a trampoline park near Redruth. There is no better way to burn off wet-weather energy than with an hour’s bouncing. You have to book your jumping slot in advance, so it’s not always a spur-of-the moment decision. However, the strict number control means you know it’s not going to be crammed and chaotic. They also run fitness classes if you fancy working off some energy yourself too!
One of the best local museums for families is Geevor Tin Mine, which is just along the coast road in Pendeen. Pan for “gold” and take an underground tour. There are some outdoor areas, but on the whole, you can spend a lot of time indoors. A bit further afield, there’s the National Maritime Museum Cornwall in Falmouth. This can get pretty busy on a wet day; however it’s spacious, and there are several car parks in Falmouth. While you’re there, there’s also the popular Ships and Castles leisure centre and a wonderful, family-friendly art gallery.
Go out anyway!
We actually love our beaches in wet and windy weather. The sea has a really special beauty on a wild day; and a walk across the sands against the wind is truly exhilarating. On calm but rainy days, you’re wet anyway, so you might as well get in the sea! You’ll find that your kids really won’t care that there’s a bit of rain, and you can always wear your wetties. Warm up afterwards with hot chocolate at one of the fantastic beach cafés.
Or, a rainy summer’s day is the perfect time for a spot of forest bathing. Grab your wellies and head off to explore our local Steeple Woods (we can give you directions), or take a short drive to Tehidy Woods (near Redruth, which has the bonus of a café). At this time of year, you can hear but not feel the rain as it patters on the leafy canopy above you.
So embrace the rain, and take the opportunity to explore new places and try different things. If you want any more suggestions, just ask any of us at Polmanter. We’ve all had the experience of entertaining (or being) wet-weather kids in Cornwall!