5 Ways to Make the Most of a Rainy Beach Vacation

You may not get to have fun in the sun, but you don't have to kiss your memorable vacation goodbye. When it comes inclement weather during a beach getaway, you just need to be prepared.

We’ve all experienced a gloomy day when we were expecting sunny skies. Even with the clearest of forecasts, a chance of rain always looms overhead. If you haven’t experienced a rainy day on vacation, consider yourself lucky.

That’s the trouble with perfectly planning your beach trip around wet and dry seasons; there’s always a chance of rain, no matter the season. Still, don’t let that put a damper on your holiday. Instead, embrace your non-beach surroundings while you wait for the storm to pass.

Here are five ways to make the most of a rainy day (or even a week) in paradise.

Explore the Local Cuisine Scene

Ready to try the local flavor? Dine out on a rainy day. You might’ve packed sandwiches for a day at the beach, but now you can explore the local specials, specialties, and beloved beach eateries.

Do as the foodies do. Find out what the area is known for and try it. What is a local delicacy? What restaurants seem to be the favorite among travelers and locals alike? Bon Appetit! Just remember to bring your umbrella.

Tony's Pizzaria is an icon and looks very beachy and tropical to match the feel of the town.

When it comes to local eateries, it’s always a good idea to explore your options. When it’s raining, you have the time to do so.

And who knows. There may be some cool spots overlooking the rainy beach. If you’re in a town known for its beach scene, there are probably plenty to choose from.

Explore and Enjoy The Indoors

Even if you have your heart set on an outdoor activity, don’t overlook indoor adventures. Maybe you want to go to a museum or catch a play. Maybe they have one of the best aquariums around. Now’s the time to look into it. Usually, places with a great beach also have great places to hang out on not so beachy days, you just need to find them.

Or, keep it simple. Go to a nearby coffee shop and do as the locals do. If the rain seems too heavy to go anywhere, pour a glass of wine and enjoy your Airbnb. Take an afternoon siesta. Do whatever it is you enjoy doing when it rains. In other words, live in the moment and yes, your rained-out plans.

People observing fish at the aquarium

Vacationing is a state of mind, as they say. It’s always a bummer when we’ve planned out the sunniest day at the beach and the sun doesn’t come out, but what can you do other than wait?

It’s time to find out. Make the most of your rainy day and do a little exploring of the place you’re in from the inside out. Discover what else is out there. Rainy days are an opportunity to explore a place through an adventure you might’ve otherwise missed out on. If you’re stuck inside, watch a movie, play a game, read a book, find the hotel gym, or just relax. Whatever you do, don’t let a little rain get you down. The sun will probably come out tomorrow or the day after that. But if it doesn’t, see what else is out there (and out of the rain) while you wait.

Read More: How To Plan an Affordable Beach Vacation

Make It a Spa Day

One of the best things about going to the beach is that you’re never that far away from a spa. If you can’t frolic on the sand, pamper yourself. Whether it’s raining or not, a spa day is always a good day. That’s my vacation philosophy, anyway.

mother and young daughter having spa day together

You’re on vacation to have fun, but you’re also there to relax. Book a deep tissue massage or a seaweed wrap. One of the best things about rainy vacation days is they often lead to a little more change in our pocket than we initially planned on having.

If it starts raining, strongly consider a spa day. No matter what you’re after, there’s likely a spa menu out there worth those pennies you’ve saved with this day in mind. The sound of rain during a massage can add an extra layer of calm, assuming it’s not a tropical storm!

With that said, if you’re stuck inside or you don’t want to shell out more than you must, a DIY spa day is always an option.

Catch a Movie

Few things say “it’s raining” quite like catching a movie. Whether you rent it, stream it, or go to a local theater, this is an easy way to pass the time and wait for the rain to pass.

Cheerful young couple laughing, having popcorn while watching movie together, sitting in cinema auditorium.

If you’ve been meaning to watch a recent release or a classic but haven’t gotten around to it, this is the perfect opportunity. There’s no time like the rainy present! If there’s a cool local spot you can go to and catch something new, old, or offbeat, even better. If you’re staying in a hotel, don’t forget to ask someone at the front desk if they do movie screenings on rainy days. More do than you might think.

Get Cozy

Who couldn’t use a little more downtime? It’s never a bad time for a little R&R. And let’s not forget about a romantic day in! If this is a tropical trip for lovebirds, rain can make it even more romantic. So use your downtime wisely.

No matter what kind of vacation you’re on, you officially have a perfect excuse to get cozy. Embrace it! Trips will always come with things we didn’t plan or prepare for. Sometimes, we plan a beach vacation, sure we’ll get sunny skies and it rains. One time, I spent a week in the Caribbean and only saw the sun for the last two days. But what can you do?

rain drops on a window and palm trees

The sun eventually came out, and I went swimming in the crystal clear waters as planned. But on the days when I couldn’t go out, I sat on the balcony of my Airbnb and watched the birds seeking shelter in the neighbor’s mango trees. I also took my own advice and got a deep-tissue massage–and I’m really glad I got that before the sunburn.

No matter what you decide to do, don’t let the rain crush your island dreams. Enjoy this cozy, rainy moment. On vacation, when our plans fall through, it can be hard to relax. That’s why it’s so important to remember how to roll with the punches, kick back, and go with the flow, rain or shine. That’s what a day at the beach is all about, after all.

Read More: Get Away From It All at These Hidden Beaches

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