What To Do On A Rainy Day in Raleigh

As North Carolinians, we know how unpredictable the weather can be. One minute it’s sunny, and the next it’s pouring rain! When the dark storm clouds start rolling in, it’s likely your first instinct is to head inside and wait it out. But why sit around and do nothing when there’s so much you could be doing in Raleigh?

Whether it’s just a rainy day, or it’s been raining for a week, there’s plenty to do (while staying dry) around Raleigh. Throughout this blog, consider us your virtual tour guides. We’ll show you all of the fun, unique things Raleigh has to offer even when the weather isn’t cooperating! 

So slide on your rain boots, grab your umbrella and hit the road because you’re going to have plenty to do!

yellow rain boots in Raleigh puddle

11 Things To Do When It’s Raining in Raleigh

1. Go To The Gym

We know, it’s hard enough to get motivated to go to the gym on a regular day. But on a rainy day? Forget about it! However, that’s exactly what you should do. 

Head over to your favorite gym and get moving. Plan to spend an hour or two getting your body moving to activate all of those endorphins. You’ll instantly feel better about all the rain outside! 

Anytime Fitness is open 24/7 so you really can go anytime. The big LifeTime Fitness on Falls of Neuse Road in Raleigh has a One-Day pass you can use to try the place out if you aren’t already a member. They even have a hair salon, a eucalyptus sauna, and an indoor pool. Think about it—a great workout and some quiet time in an essential oils steam bath just screams happiness. 

Expert Tip: Save your trip to the hair salon for a sunny day. The rain and humidity would kill a fresh new blowout!

2. Try Rock Climbing

Indoor rock climbing that is! For an exhilarating indoor activity, head on over to Triangle Rock Club on Duraleigh Road in Raleigh. They have all the equipment you’ll need, and after just a few attempts, you’ll be well on your way to being the next climbing sensation of Raleigh! 

Another idea is visiting Warrior Tech OCR in Morrisville. They have everything you need to become your very own version of a Ninja Warrior! With classes for kids and adults, this might just be the perfect outing that puts a smile on your face despite the rain.

3. Treat Yourself at the Mall

If you needed an excuse to go shopping, this is it. There are plenty of places to shop in Raleigh, but our recommendations would either be The Streets at Southpoint Mall in Durham, Crabtree Valley Mall or the North Hills Shopping Center

At Nordstrom in Southpoint Mall, you can find the largest selection of rain-worthy runway-style essentials such as Hunter Boots, Kate Spade raincoats and an Eric Javits bucket hat. With all of these stylish accessories, you will undoubtedly turn heads, even in the rain!

Regardless of where you go, there are plenty of shops for you and your family to enjoy. After all, a little retail therapy never hurt—right? 

4. Order A Drink (or Two) At Your Favorite Bar

When the rain just won’t stop, head over to Foundation for the perfect rainy day cocktail. Don’t fight it! Find a comfortable seat at the bar and order up a “Purple Rain”. Mixed with Gin, Cranberry Juice, a little bit of Blue Curacao, a touch of sweet and sour mix, and a dash of Soda Water, it’s sure to cure even the worst case of the rainy day blues. 

More of a vodka person? Totally understandable. Try a “Rainy Day Marley” instead. It’s made with equal parts Vodka, Triple Sec, and Malibu Coconut Rum. Top it with a splash of Orange Juice and pretend you’re relaxing on a beach somewhere. 


Has your rainy mood sunken to an all-time low? That can only be solved with the heavy hitter: tequila. Ask the bartender to make you a “Hot Sultry Zoe”. They’ll pour the Tequila, then add Galliano—and you’ll never guess what comes next. A mug of hot chocolate and a heaping amount of whipped cream. Could this drink get any better?

5. Relax With A Cup of Coffee

Or, if cocktails aren’t your cup of tea, grab a cup of coffee at one of our favorite local coffee shops

Sola Coffee, Jubala Coffee and The Third Place are our go-to coffee shops in Raleigh, especially on a rainy day. So go on, order yourself a good ol’ cup of Joe and relax. And why not order a locally sourced treat while you’re at it!

6. Tour A Museum

Okay, maybe cocktails aren’t the most kid-friendly option. When it comes to spending rainy days with the kids, we suggest visiting one of Raleigh’s local museums! Here are three of our favorites:

Rain or shine, the North Carolina Museum of Art is the perfect place to spend a rainy day. Public tours are free, so you and the kiddos can get lost for hours in the various exhibits.

The North Carolina Museum of Natural Sciences is the largest natural science museum in the Southeast. It’s home to a large variety of interactive exhibits and educational programs that allow visitors to get up close and personal with science and nature. Plus, every three to six months, the museum has a featured exhibition gallery full of new topics, specimens, and experiences. 

Finally, the Marbles Kids Museum is the perfect place for Raleighites on a rainy day, too. Kids and parents alike love the hands-on, interactive learning experiences at this museum. For even more fun, the museum’s IMAX theater allows families to watch educational movies and the latest kids blockbusters.  

7. Grab Your Favorite Snack

Calories don’t count when it’s raining. Okay, yes they do but that doesn’t mean you can’t treat yourself, especially when it’s pouring rain! We suggest packing the family in the car and driving to Cary, the home of Andia’s Homemade Ice Cream. Not only can you order an ice cream flight, but also a donut ice cream sundae. Talk about true indulgence! 

Or, head over to one of our staff favorites, Simply Crepes. Their menu is entirely made from scratch, and each ingredient is sourced from local Raleigh farms. Plus, the crepes are absolutely delicious and a must-have on rainy days. 

8. Visit The Library

There’s just something about cozying up with a book when it’s raining, wouldn’t you agree? Stop by one of our local libraries to snag your new favorite book. There are 22 libraries in the Raleigh area, so you’re sure to have one near you. Check out this library map to find the one that’s closest to you!

9. Pamper Yourself

What better time to get a manicure and pedicure at your favorite salon than when it’s raining? Raleigh has plenty of nail salons you should try, but if you’re a seasoned Raleigh local like us, then you likely have a go-to place lined up. So go ahead, make an appointment. You deserve it!

10. Have Some Friendly Competition

Round up your friends and go bowling, or test your skills at the local arcade. If bowling is more your cup of tea, you have to check out Kings Dining and Entertainment, located in the North Hills neighborhood. You can bowl, throw darts, play ping pong and more! 

Now when it comes to arcades, we have a few different suggestions. Each is sure to deliver fun indoor games that the whole family can enjoy. Boxcar Bar and Arcade is undeniably a local favorite, but Frankie’s Fun Park is always a good time too. You can’t go wrong either way!

11. Release Your Inner Artist

Take the family to Paint Your Pot or Klaystation and let your imagination run wild. Rainy days are the best time to let the creative juices flow, and what better way to set them free than through painting pottery. 

Neither studio requires an appointment before stopping by. However, Klaystation doesn’t require a studio fee, meaning you only pay for the piece of pottery you choose. Paint Your Pot, on the other hand, requires a studio fee which is half the price of the item you choose, up to $12. Both studios are amazing and loved equally by all Raleigh locals though!   

Now, you can choose what suits you best to handle these rain showers, be it exercising, climbing, shopping, painting or cocktailing. But sometimes just embracing—dare we say dancing in—the rain might just be the best way to enjoy rainy days in Raleigh. 

Something else you can do in the rain? Take a look at potential new homes on the Spencer Properties app! We aren’t scared of the rain here at Spencer Properties, so when you’re ready to look, we’re ready to help—rain or shine!