Children's indoor activities in Kent for when it rains

by Lauren Abbott

There’s nothing like a rainy day to send children up the wall.

Whether it is a shower or torrential downpour we have a bucket full of suggestion of things you could do if little sailors are getting cabin fever.

Rainy days can be a 'pane'
Rainy days can be a 'pane'

Soft play

From things to climb up and those to slide down, soft play centres are an ideal way to leave a dreary day behind.

With separate areas for babies, toddlers and older children the centres can be safe padded places for youngsters to play, while their cafes and restaurants will help keep everyone’s energy levels up.

Kent has centres of all shapes and sizes, ready to welcome energetic toddlers and worn-out mums!

Check our full soft play guide here.


If you’ve only a few hours to spare and a budget to stick to, seek out a local museum for stretching legs and minds.

There are museums across Kent, which give an insight into life in the county through the ages.

The Magic of Masks and Puppets exhibition at Maidstone Museum
The Magic of Masks and Puppets exhibition at Maidstone Museum

And as many are small, with often a more limited number of exhibitions and displays, they are an ideal introduction for little minds, which are likely to prefer a short visit and bite-sized chunks of information to digest.

As many rely on the support of volunteers, opening hours should be checked in advance, but admission prices are often much less than larger attractions or occasionally free of charge.

Click here to see our full museum list.

Take a train

Keen on a trip in the great outdoors while also wanting to escape the downpours?

Climb aboard a train for a scenic ride through Kent’s countryside or coastline.

Romney Hythe and Dymchurch Railway
Romney Hythe and Dymchurch Railway

The Romney, Hythe and Dymchurch Railway, Spa Valley and Kent and East Sussex Railway are three of the biggest in the county while light railways such as Bredgar and Wormshill and Sittingbourne and Kemsley also run on selective weekends and holidays.

Timetables will alter depending on the time of year with special event days involving character favourites like Peppa Pig or Thomas the Tank Engine requiring an additional charge and advanced booking.

Indoor attractions

While Kent is full of things to do outside it does have its fair share of indoor tourist attractions.

The Canterbury Tales attraction at St Margaret's Street
The Canterbury Tales attraction at St Margaret's Street

Chislehurst Caves, Canterbury Tales and Dover Castle are among those that will all offer some element of shelter from the rain.


From pool parties and float sessions to lessons and group classes, swimming will let you and your little ones get absolutely soaked while not having to venture outside.

Kent’s leisure centres are open all year round making them a firm favourite with families.

Alongside pool-side attractions many have additional soft play areas enabling you to extend your time there with cafes and restaurants on hand to feed and water everybody.


Strike it lucky with your family and take them for a game at your nearest bowling alley.

Frames to help children push their bowling balls down, barriers to prevent the ball running down the gutter and balls light enough for children to carry can all make bowling a suitable sport to introduce pre-schoolers to.

As attention spans are shorter it may be worth considering having just one game to begin with and very small groups of players in each lane so that turns come around quickly and little players aren’t left waiting around.

Lanes may need to be pre-booked in busy periods or for large groups.

Inquire with your nearest alley for more information. Click here to see the full list.


The county is fortunate enough to have a good selection of theatres of all shapes and sizes.

Many host children’s productions throughout the year with appearances from Ben and Holly, Peppa Pig and The Gruffalo all popular listings.

Peppa Pig and George in Peppa Pig's Big Splash
Peppa Pig and George in Peppa Pig's Big Splash

And don’t fret if your toddler isn’t yet used to sitting still or quietly for any length of time.

Showings involving young theatre goers won’t be quiet affairs with plenty of singing, actions and audience participation, which make them a fun and ideal introduction to live theatre for youngsters.

Inquire with your nearest venue for further details or programme information. Click here for the full list.

And if you're worried about taking your children for the first time, check our tips here.

What have we missed? Let us know below.

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