Although spring means blooming flowers and warm afternoons, spring also welcomes our rainy season. Downpours and drizzle doesn’t have to ruin your weekend. We’ve put together a list of our 10 favorite indoor activities around New England that are perfectly suited for a rainy day.
10. Visit a Museum
New England is packed with spectacular museums that are continually bringing in new exhibitions, films and public programs. Pop over to the RISD Museum in Providence for an avant-garde art experience. It’s only an hour from Boston and kids under 18 are admitted for free.
9. Enjoy the Outdoors, Indoors
Rainy days don’t mean nature is off the menu. The Lyman Estate Greenhouses in Waltham are some of the oldest surviving greenhouses in the U.S. The estate features an extensive compound of buildings — some dating back to the 19th century — housing orchids, camellias, exotic houseplants and more. Bonus: visiting is free!
8. Browse an Indoor Main Street
Hidden on the fifth floor of an old mill building in Lowell is the trendy Main Street of your dreams. Mill No. 5 features a retro movie theater, live music, vintage and artisanal food stores and restaurants all in an indoor strip. Check the calendar before visiting to catch the farmer’s market, free community yoga or game night at the local coffee shop.
7. Learn a New Craft
Head up a cold, rainy weekend with a glassblowing class at Luke Adams Glassblowing Studio in Norwood, Massachusetts. Learn the basics in a one-hour workshop by making a paperweight or get advanced with a jewelry-making class for a one-of-a-kind statement piece. The calendar has information about special pop-up events like a stemless wine glass class.
6. Shake (or Stir) a Cocktail
Test our your bartending skills with a cocktail-making class at Bully Boy Distillers in Boston’s Dorchester neighborhood, hosted regularly by the family owned distillery. You’ll learn how to use regular kitchen ingredients to make delicious drinks focused on a specific spirit or seasonal theme, and you can chat with Bully Boy bartenders about their latest projects. Often the classes are in partnership with a local food purveyor so you may find yourself snacking on Union Square Donuts or Taza Truffles while you shake.
5. Catch Up on Your Reading
If bad weather just makes you want to curl up with a good book, head on over to Book and Bar in Portsmouth, New Hampshire. Sip a cocktail or enjoy a lavish brunch while browsing a huge selection of used books. You can participate in one of their author readings, trivia nights or live music performances, or just find a quiet corner and hang out with Jane Austen.
4. Climb, Climb, Climb
Rain may not be ideal weather for hiking, but who says you can’t harness an ascent? Head to the Central Rock Gym in Worcester, Massachusetts, to explore 16,000 square feet of climbing terrain. If you’re a newbie to the sport, an intro class offers a taste of things. If you’re experienced, hit the wall and work out that workweek stress.
3. See a Movie
Doom and gloom outside makes the perfect backdrop for a classic noir film. At Red River Theatres in Concord, New Hampshire, you can see a number of contemporary, foreign and classic films on the big screen. Load up on popcorn and settle in for a double feature — you’ve earned it. The theater also sports an in-house gallery featuring work by New Hampshire artists. It’s a nice cap on your cinematic adventure.
2. Float Away Stress
Take the weather as a sign that you deserve a break and hit the spa for a day of unconventional relaxation. At Balans Organic Spa in Boston, you can try out flotation therapy in a spacious flotation room that’s meant to be a more upscale experience than your typical flotation tank. Soak in therapeutic Epsom salts, float in silence or listen to your favorite music or podcast.
1. Time Travel Back 200 Years
Transport yourself back in time with a visit to one of New England’s many historic homes. The Victoria Mansion in Portland, Maine, is unique in that almost all of the objects in the home were original to its 19th-century owners — that’s a preservationist’s dream. The house has been immaculately conserved, and you can take an in-depth tour with an expert.