Although Devon gets its fair share of sunshine, the region still gets rainy days here and there. Fortunately, there are still many things you can do when the weather is wet. Here is our guide to rainy day activities in Devon.
Escape rooms are a super fun way to pass the time when the weather’s gloomy. These are real life adventure games where a team of players have to discover clues and solve puzzles to complete a timed mission and successfully escape the room.
Red House Mysteries in Exeter is an exciting and immersive escape room where you have to solve a mystery and escape within an hour. There are two narrative driven escape rooms to choose from – the 1940s detective mystery themed ‘The Shadow Darkens’ and the 1970s museum robbery themed ‘The Heist’. Teams are between two to six people – perfect for stag and hen dos, office parties or family days out, although children under 16 must be accompanied by an adult. Red House Mysteries also runs interactive games and events, so make sure to check out the events calendar on its website.
Escape Down The Rabbit Hole in Barnstaple has a fantastic range of interactive games and escape rooms. There are three escape rooms to choose from. Get your wands ready at the ‘College of Magic’ and hunt down items which have been stolen by a group of witches. At ‘Fix the Reactor’, you’ll become electrical engineers and fix the makeshift reactor before it blows. At ‘CSI Investigations’, you’ll help to unravel the mystery of four murders. Once you’ve solved all the clues, head to the restaurant for some delicious film and literature inspired dishes. When the weather gets better, you can always return as there are also some fun outdoor escape games which combine treasure hunting with GPS Geocaching and AR technology.
At Trapped Escape Room in Okehampton, you can choose between two mysteries to solve. At ‘Templars’, a rogue agent is destroying the secret service from within, and it’s your task to expose the mole. At ‘Enigma’, you’ll step back in time to 1942 to collect important blueprints to help a cryptologist on a mission for a secret government department. The different rooms have lighting to match the period setting of the theme for an atmospheric effect. All group sizes are between two and six people, and the challenges last one hour each.
Shopping Centres and Markets
One of the best things to do when it’s raining in Devon is to explore the local shops and markets. Devon has some of the best shopping in the country, from local crafts to designer goods.
Bickleigh Mill near Tiverton is a rural shopping, eating and recreation destination located within an 18th century working mill. There are three floors to roam around, so you won’t leave empty handed! You’ll find jewellery, accessories, handmade gifts and children’s toys, as well as a range of British produced goods. You don’t have to travel far for a bite to eat either. The Bickley Mill bistro serves traditional homemade dishes using ingredients sourced from local farms. It’s also a great place to grab a few sweet treats and savoury snacks. On a sunnier day, make sure to explore Bickley Mill’s surrounding waterways and walks.
Barnstaple Pannier Market is one of the UK’s largest indoor markets. It has been going for over 150 years and has remained largely unchanged since it was established. The range of stalls here are extensive and you’re bound to grab a great bargain. There is everything from fresh local produce, flowers, crafts, prints, fashion, jewellery, books and much more. There is a selection of cafes with varied menus and relaxed atmospheres – the perfect place to watch the bustling market in action. The market is open all year round, so you’ll never miss it. There are also a few independent shops nearby for something a little different.
If you prefer big brand names, then head to Princesshay shopping precinct in the heart of Exeter. With over 70 stores, Princesshay is a fun and stylish place to shop where you can find high street brands as well as designer and regional brands. Around Roman Walk, Bedford Street and Bampfylde Lane there are several independent retailers. When you want to give your shopping legs a rest, head to one of the restaurants and coffee shops. The shopping centre has plenty of places to eat and drink, including all your favourites like Wagamama, Cafe Rouge and Nandos.
Okay, here us out on this one. Devon is a fantastic place to do watersports, and it would be a shame not to try it out just because of a little rain. If you’re going to get splashed anyway, then it’s the perfect time to do it!
Livit Adventures is a company in Bideford that offers a range of outdoor adventures and activities including walking and climbing in the North Devon countryside. It also provides a range of watersports experiences like surfing, wakeboarding, kitesurfing and coasteering. Whether you’re a solo traveller, a couple or a group of friends, the trips are super inclusive. Transport is included and coaches will take you around in the adventure bus. Livit Adventures also provides accommodation in a selection of tipis and bell tents, as well as larger glamping units. Food is prepared three times a day and served in a social dining area, and you can even get involved in the cooking if you want!
Based on the waterfront, Exmouth Watersports & Activity Centre offers a range of watersports lessons, including windsurfing, paddle boarding and kayaking. Whether you’re a beginner or advanced, classes are customised to meet your level. Lessons are taught at the Estuary Centre before jumping into the waves at one of Devon’s incredible beaches. There are lessons which are tailored specially for kids, which include a taster of different watersports. You can even book lessons for larger groups and hen and stag dos, which include accommodation and onsite bars.
Also in Devon
Red House Mysteries
Red House Mysteries, King Street Business Centre, King Street, Exeter, Devon, EX1 1BH