STEVE FARMER — 12 July 2013

“You guys just keep going. Lots of people spend their holiday in their caravan or cabin watching TV or DVDs and do nothing but complain about the weather.” 

I was a little surprised at the statement from the owner of a caravan park where we regularly stayed. She was talking about how different visitors handled rainy weather when they were on holidays and I was surprised because I couldn’t imagine spending my annual vacation cooped up in a van or cabin with three active kids, all because of a bit of rain. After all, we had chosen to holiday in one of the wettest areas in Australia and a few showers (or torrential downpours) were par for the course. And besides, there was so much to see and do that we really couldn’t afford to waste a single day.

Whether you’re travelling as a family, a couple or a single, the holiday fun doesn’t have to stop just because the rain starts. The trick is to have a backup plan for rainy days and in our experience that backup plan has three tiers.

Temporary tactics are the first tier and can include indoor hobbies, reading or one of the multitude of things you can do with a computer — as well as the television and DVDs. For example, all those holiday photos or videos you’ve been taking could be sorted, saved and shared with family and friends. You could also catch up on those small maintenance jobs on your RV.

Now, indoor activities are fine for a few days, but sooner or later cabin fever will set in, especially if you’ve got kids onboard. That’s when you need to move to tier number two and get out and about, but preferably not wet.

Undercover activities are the obvious choice here and could include a trip to the shopping centres (sorry fellas), a museum, the movies or a library, to name a few. The nearest tourist information centre should be able to come up with heaps of ideas for those wet days.

The final tier can depend on where you’re holidaying and the ambient temperature at the time. I’m talking about getting out and possibly even getting wet. During a steamy, tropical summer a little rain can even be a blessing. Heck, you can swim in the rain, or pull on some good wet weather gear and head outdoors to fish, bushwalk, birdwatch, or whatever takes your fancy. I can tell you it adds to the experience to explore rainforest attractions in a tropical downpour. Just be aware that tropical mountain streams can rise quickly and can become quite dangerous. Tracks and rocks can also become slippery after rain.

By the way, one thing I try to avoid (unless there’s a possibility of being flooded in for a length of time) is travelling in the rain. It’s far more dangerous on the road in wet weather and you might not escape the rain anyway. Just stay put for a few days and make the most of all your rainy day options.

So I’m sure you’ll agree there’s no need to put your holiday on hold just because of a bit of rain.

YOUR SAY: What are your rainy day tips? What do you and your family get up when you’re camped and it starts raining?


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