A question from one of our yurt guests this week got me to thinking about what our visitors can do if it’s wet on your holiday. We are lucky in having the barn as a refuge for guests to enjoy whatever the weather - with sofas, a wood-burning stove, cooking facilities and a large dining table - it's a lovely place to while away a few hours reading and playing games while rain patters on the tin roof. But if you want to get out and about when it's raining where should you go? Read on to find out...
A big one of course is Exeter, Devon's historic cathedral city, which is surprisingly close being only one junction down the M5 from Cullompton. It has numerous attractions and lots of shops and restaurants. A few highlights include:
The RAMM (Royal Albert Memorial Museum) is an excellent indoor option with fascinating free galleries and temporary exhibitions that you may have to pay extra for. It's also close to some of Exeter's best and varied eateries.
Exeter Cathedral is also nearby and well worth a visit. The underground passages are interesting and most definitely out of the rain being beneath the streets. They are accessed via an entrance on Paris Street next to Next at the John Lewis end of town.
To get active while it's raining look no further than Clip and Climb, Exeter's indoor climbing centre down in the Quay area. It claims to be the Southwest's largest indoor climbing centre. There are also some great restaurants and antique places to explore in the Quay along with a new yarn shop Lauren Aston Designs run by a friend of ours where you can stock up on your quality colourful knitting yarn and knitting patterns before returning to your yurt or the barn to knit the rain away.
There are several cinemas in Exeter (Vue, Odeon and Picturehouse) where you could while away a few hours. There is also an Odeon in Taunton within easy reach of the M5 and for smaller cinemas closer by there are the Tivoli in Tiverton and the Wellesley in Wellington.
Taunton has Hollywood Bowl and there is also Tenpin bowling in Exeter and bowling at Ocean in Exmouth where there is also a big soft play and places to eat and drink all under one roof.
The best trampoline park we've found it is FlipOut in Wellington where they also now have laser quest. There is also iBounce in Exeter.
Besides Ocean in Exmouth mentioned above, there is soft play at Quince Honey Farm in South Molton where there is also an interesting museum all about how honey and wax products are made.
Museums and galleries
We've already mentioned Exeter's RAMM museum above, but we also love the Museum of Mid Devon Life at Tiverton, Torquay Museum and the World of Country Life at Sandy Bay in Exmouth. All have fascinating exhibits of local Devon history but each has some extra unique attractions for example the Tivvy Bumper at Tiverton, which is a steam train housed indoors in its own separate area.
The Torquay Museum has exhibits from around the world but also about Agatha Christie who had a summer house nearby. The World of Country Life has lots of indoor play areas including a pirate ship in a giant covered sand pit and spacious indoor hangars containing lots of motor and steam vehicles from throughout the history of automotive so it's suitable for all the family.
The Thelma Hulbert Gallery in Honiton is an art gallery which often has special exhibitions and workshops in holidays for children. Their summer art week is coming up from 15th to 18th August where they invite 11-17 year olds to try a different activity on each of the four days.
Honiton also has a pottery painting workshop which is a great wet weather activity. And there is Something Lovely Pottery in Sidmouth, set in Libra Court, a courtyard with six studios and galleries including that of Lynda Kettle an artist and tutor who has run watercolour painting courses over the last few years at our holiday cottages.
Embrace getting wet
And one final thing to say when it’s raining is don’t be afraid of getting out in the rain and getting wet. One of the best things to do locally in the rain is The Bear Trail assault course at Westcott because you’re going to get wet and dirty anyway so actually you might as well do it in the rain! Just remember to take bin bags for your dirty clothes and a change of clothes and the change of shoes, and let us know if you need to use the washing machine.
If you have some fantastic wet weather suggestions of things to do nearby please let us know so we can add them to the list for future guests.
Happy Holidays whatever the weather!
Katie is one of the owners of Blackdown Yurts and likes to write about things going on at and around her beautiful glamping site