Rainy day places to take the kids

Come rain or shine, there are lots of great places to go in Manchester


This summer is throwing all kinds of weather at us. Today the sun is shining, tomorrow it could be raining. It’s doing everything it can to wrong foot us!

Last month, in the third of our Manchester Favourites series, we asked 4Manchester Women readers, where are your favourite places to take the kids on a rainy day (click here to read it).


Child splashing in puddles


You came back to us and shared lots of great Manchester recommendations which we’ve used as a basis for this blog. Of course we won’t have captured everything – but it’s a start, which we will add to over time.

We hope it will give you some practical inspiration whatever the weather – recommendations from real Manchester mums!


Tram Ride - Under 5′s FREE and concessions apply

“If you are heading for the city centre or somewhere along the Metrolink route – Heaton Park, Bury for the East Lancs railway or the CBBC studios at MediaCityUK, a tram ride is always an exciting start to a day out for kids.” – Cat.


The Museum of Science and Industry (MOSI) – FREE

There’s a lot of love from 4Manchester Women readers for MOSI.




Hayley says “MOSI is absolutely phenomenal – it’s fun and educational at the same time!”

While Michelle said “You can’t beat the MOSI – there is something new every time you visit. It’s child friendly and they can have fun whilst learning.”

Don’t forget they are holding a special ‘Day Out With Thomas’ 30th August – 2nd September 2012.


The Manchester Museum – FREE

Not only can you discover lots of exciting bones and relics, there are live reptiles and amphibians to delight your littlies. Why not book a free tour with one of the keepers and then follow their progress afterwards on The Frog Blog.


Manchester Museum

Tree frog

Cat and Diane both think that “The Manchester Museum is a terrific place to take kids when it’s too wet to play outdoors.”


Imperial War Museum North – FREE

Sarah M says “For slightly older kids there is currently an exhibition at the Imperial War Museum called Once Upon A Wartime – it looks at five children’s books set during wars, ranging from WWI through to a modern day child soldier in Africa. Always loads of interactive stuff there for kids and adults.”


Imperial War Museum North

Gemma and Summer give IWM North a big thumbs up too!


Your local cinema – check web sites for prices

“My children love the cinema, and the Odeon and the Vue both run special kids screenings with reduced rates”. Sarah R


Printworks Odeon sign


Odeon Kids – tickets start at £1 and you can take a free adult!

Vue Kids – tickets start at £1.50.


Your local library

Lorraine flew the flag for “The local library – for story time, its dry, clean and free.” Find a library near you.


Legoland Discovery – Under 3’s FREE. Book online for discounts

Quite a number of our readers mentioned Legoland Discovery at The Trafford Centre, calling it a “Brilliant” place to take the kids on a rainy day. Thanks to Ashleigh, Hayley, Gemma and Alma for your recommendation.


Legoland Discovery Manchester


People’s History Museum – FREE

Hayley also gave a big thumbs up to The People’s History Museum in Spinningfields – “Another great place.”


National Football Museum – FREE

Just opened and with lots of children’s activities (though you do have to pay for some of the interactive activities separately).


Ordsall Hall – FREE (guided tours£2 per person)

Karen describes Ordsall Hall as a Lovely quiet place to visit.”


Ordsall Hall


Tatton Park (National Trust) – Car park and admission charge for house and grounds

Emma says that “Tatton park in Cheshire is lovely, with a play area and lots of nature. Plus there is a nice cafe where you can escape to in the rain and Tatton Park Farm where you can meet the animals”.


Dunham Massey (National Trust) – Admission charge for house and grounds

There is lots of space to run around and a great cafe and indoor play area when you need to dry off. “We always like going to Dunham Massey” – Toni.


Blue Planet Aquarium – Admission charge           

Summer came up with a great suggestion . “Any aquarium is a must on a rainy day because you’re still surrounded by water although you’re dry and you get to see some great wildlife!”


Reef Shark at Blue Planet Aquarium


Jodrell Bank – Admission charge (under 4’s FREE)

For all those budding Brian Cox’s, why not take Becky’s advice and head for the big telescope at Jodrell Bank.


Your local sports centre – Admission charge

Vic says “Why not hire a court at Manchester Tennis Centre and get active with the kids for a game of tennis. Its great exercise for all the family and you never know they might be the next Andy Murray!” There are indoor and outdoor courts.


Get crafty – Charges according to activity

Painting pots and the like, are always good wet weather activities – there are lots of great places in Manchester, including Pottery Corner in Chorlton (Elaine – “A great place on a wet day”), Minikin Emporium and Bean and Brush – both in Sale.


Wall display of childs handprints in clay, Pottery Corner, Chorlton


Indoor play centres – Admission charge

Hayley’s little girl loves Head over Heels Fairytale Play in Chorlton. But there are lots of other places around Manchester you can try.


As I mentioned earlier, this isn’t a complete list – there are lots of other National Trust properties in our immediate area – click here for a full list.

Or why not check out this fabulous resource – Day Out  With The Kids which is one of the best lists I’ve found so far.

Please do keep telling us about your great wet weather (or shine) finds, so we can keep adding to this resource and hopefully make all our lives a lot easier.


Alison x  (your 4Manchester Women Editor)


Photographs: Wikipedia (MOSI), Wikipedia (IWM North), Wikipedia (Legoland Discovery), Wikipedia (Ordsall Hall), Wikipedia (Blue Planet Aquarium),

This is not a sponsored blog post.


Other related articles

Tell us where to take the kids on a rainy day

Kids parties – Walton Park, Sale

Manchester’s Favourite Restaurants and Cafés

Manchester’s Favourite Cocktail Bars






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