Perth On a Rainy Day: 12 Things To Do
Perth is the capital city (and the largest) in the state of Western Australia and is one of the most significant cities in the region. A financial, cultural, and educational hub, Perth is a popular tourist destination visited by over 2 million travelers every year. The city is known for its range of cultural attractions, lovely outdoor spaces, beautiful beaches, diverse dining scene, and more.
While the weather in Perth is generally good year-round, the winter, especially, can bring about some pouring rain and thunderstorms. If you happen to be visiting during this period, then there is a good chance that you will experience some rainy days throughout your trip. Although you may think that this will spoil your holiday, think again!
A wet weather day is actually the best time to discover a number of indoor attractions and spots across the city. Why not try an escape room at Zero Latency Perth or practice your ice skating skills at Xtreme Ice Arena? Head to Aloha Surfhouse, an entertaining climbing and wave park, or Bayswater Waves for some time in the fun wave pool.
Instead of staying in your hotel room, grab your raincoat or umbrella and keep the wet weather blues at bay with our list of top things to do on a rainy day in Perth. This includes a variety of activities – from museum hopping and film screening to indoor skydiving and arcade gaming.
Out and about and caught in a downpour? To keep your items dry and secure, look for a bag storage locker in the city where you can keep your backpacks and other belongings. Then continue your day in fabulous Perth!
Art Gallery of Western Australia
Part of the incredible Perth Cultural Centre complex, the Art Gallery of Western Australia is one of the best places to visit in Perth, rainy weather or not. The prestigious facility boasts a permanent collection of works consisting of local and international art, some of which date back to 1829.
The gallery’s collection places an emphasis on works from the Indian Ocean Rim and Australia. It also features the creations of world-famous artists such as Frederick McCubbin and Hans Heysen, to name a few. The best part is that it is free to enter the gallery, although a donation is encouraged upon entry. You can easily spend the whole day going through the interesting artworks found inside the gallery.
Aquarium of Western Australia (AQWA)
The Aquarium of Western Australia, or simply AQWA, is no doubt one of the best indoor activities to do on a rainy day in Perth. Located in Hillarys Boat Harbour, the privately-owned underwater aquarium is the biggest walkthrough aquarium in Australia and allows visitors to get a glimpse of the marine world up close.
At AQWA, you will find a wide variety of sea creatures grouped according to region, including sharks, fish and turtles. Additionally, the aquarium is home to one of the biggest coral reef exhibits in the world. It is also a fun destination for the whole family and the sea creatures are definitely a sight to behold for kids.
Established in 1897, Fremantle Markets is one of the most popular tourist attractions in all of Western Australia and is an iconic landmark in Perth. Found inside a Victorian-era building on the corner of Henderson Street and South Terrace, this historic market has been serving both locals and foreigners for over a century.
Divided into two sections, namely The Hall and The Yard, the market is home to multiple stalls and vendors that sell a wide range of products, including Australian produce, local handicrafts, woodwork, fresh produce and much more. Because of its size and all the interesting spots to check out, you can easily spend hours exploring the market. A visit to the Fremantle Markets is also a chance to escape the rain while observing how the locals shop and go about their daily lives.
The Perth Mint
Founded in 1899, The Perth Mint is one of the city’s oldest buildings and a great place to spend a rainy day in Perth. The institution was originally built for refining gold that was collected from the mines of Western Australia to produce coins. Over the years, the Perth Mint has built an impressive collection of coins and gold bars that are now open for viewing to the public.
While the collection is fascinating, most visitors come for one reason – to see the biggest and most expensive coin in the world. It's known as the Australian Kangaroo One Tonne Gold Coin, which is said to be made from 99% pure gold and worth an incredible $55 million. Additionally, you can visit the Perth Mint’s melting house to see how gold bars are made and buy a customized engraved medallion to keep as a souvenir.
One of the most unique attractions worth checking out in Perth is the Fremantle Prison, also known as Fremantle Gaol. Completed in 1859, the historic maximum security prison spans 15 acres and was intended to jail house convicts from England. When control of the prison was transferred to the local government in 1886, it was then used to imprison Australian criminals and stayed in operation for nearly 140 years.
On the 30th November in 1991, a riot took place in the Fremantle Prison and caused damages amounting to $1.8 million. Because of this event, the prison was eventually decommissioned and has since been designated a UNESCO World Heritage Site and one of Perth’s most interesting activities for locals and tourists. Visitors of the Fremantle Prison can get a glimpse of the convicts’ day to day life; a tour of the complex includes stops to the inmate cell blocks, tunnels, gatehouse and perimeter walls.
WA Museum Boola Bardip
If you want to get an in-depth understanding of the history of Western Australia, you should make time to visit the WA Museum Boola Bardip. The museum is housed within the Perth Cultural Centre and is the premier cultural institution in the state. Boola Bardip is in Nyoongar language, which translates to “many stories” in English; this name is appropriate because the museum shares the different stories of the state through its incredible collections.
The WA Museum Boola Bardip boasts eight galleries, each of which has its own theme, that showcases some incredible items and artifacts; you get to see the amazing biodiversity in Western Australia, learn about the Aboriginal people and check out meteorites, fossils and other prehistoric artifacts that were collected around the state. Aside from its world-class permanent collection, the museum also regularly hosts events, workshops and exhibitions in order to share the state’s unique culture and provide a one-of-a-kind experience for visitors.
Palace Arcade Bar
Bring out your inner child and have a super fun time at the Palace Arcade Bar. A great destination during both days when it is raining and sunny days (to escape the heat), this vintage arcade bar combines games, pizza and booze all in one place. Housed inside a heritage-listed building in the suburb of Northbridge, the bar has received numerous awards and accolades since its inception in 2018.
At the Palace Arcade Bar, you can order from an extensive range of alcoholic drinks, including craft beers, wine, scotch, tequila, rum and whiskey. You will find a range of classic games dating back to the 1970’s, such as Donkey Kong, Space Invaders, pinball and the iconic game of Pacman, where you and your friends can relive your glory days and try to set a record for highest points. It is also a great night venue for the entire family, where the adults can kick back, relax and have a few drinks while the kids stay busy playing all sorts of games. Because the bar is popular, it is best to reserve a table in advance, especially if you plan to visit on a weekend.
Adrenaline junkies and thrill-seekers often have skydiving on their travel bucket list but this activity is obviously not possible during rainy days. When visiting the Western Australian capital, however, you can do the next best thing and try indoor skydiving at iFly. An indoor skydiving capsule in Perth, iFly is a vertical wind tunnel where you can have an experience equivalent to actual free fall, simulating the same conditions when jumping 14,000 feet from a plane.
At iFly, you are paired with a qualified instructor, who will teach you all the basics and get you up to speed on how to do indoor skydiving. While inside the tunnel, you can do some fun and amazing stunts in the air, such as flips, spins and glides without the fear that comes from free falling from the sky. Additionally, because it is done completely indoors, you don’t have to wait for good weather and can enjoy this activity even if it’s raining outside.
One of the best indoor activities in Perth, one that is both fun and educational, is the Scitech Science Centre. Situated right in the heart of the city, Scitech is a non-profit organization that allows you to discover the wondrous world of science, making it the perfect destination for all kinds of travelers – whether you’re traveling with kids, your friends or even going solo – to join in on all the fun.
The Perth institute is dedicated to encouraging participation and learning in STEM through state-of-the art displays, experiments and interactive exhibits that will fascinate both younger children and the young at heart. Some of the activities that you can do at Scitech include science shows, engagement in fisheries, laboratory simulations, STEM-related games and film screenings. Additionally, the facility is home to the biggest planetarium in Australia, where guests can go stargazing and learn about space.
State Library of Western Australia
Are you tired of all the activities and simply looking for a nice, quiet place to stay dry? If so, then you would probably enjoy hanging out at the State Library of Western Australia. Housed inside the Alexander Library building and part of the Perth Cultural Centre, the State Library is a public research library tasked with collecting and preserving documentary heritage of the state and supporting WA’s public library network.
The State Library hosts an extensive collection of reading and research materials, including books, magazines, newspapers and more. The library also has modern equipment for those who want to surf the Internet, watch videos or listen to music. Visitors can enjoy state-of-the-art facilities with comfortable seating while reading or researching. On the ground floor, you will find a quaint café and bookstore; if you head to the upper level of the library, you are treated to incredible views of the Perth city center.
If mini golf, booze, and tunes are more your thing, Holey Moley is the perfect indoor destination for you. Located in Northbridge, the mini-golf venue boasts a giant course that is filled with obstacles, challenges, and eccentric themes. You can choose between 9 and 18 holes; regardless, you will be going through an array of hilarious challenges as you work your way through the course. Holey Moley also has a fully-serviced bar and a karaoke machine where you can sing your heart out and have great fun with friends.
WA Maritime Museum
One of the best Perth museums and a must-visit during your stay, the WA Maritime Museum tells the history of the city and its important role as a major port for the region. Located in Victoria Quay, the museum is made up of several unique galleries and vessels where you can find maritime-related items and artifacts such as sailing boats, pear luggers, and leisure boats. Some of the noteworthy artifacts sheltered in the museum include the HMAS Ovens submarine, the Australia II vessel and the Parry Endeavour ship used by Jon Sanders.
Perth on a Rainy Day
Who says the rain will your plans in the Western Australian capital? Sure, there may be some outdoor spots that you can’t go to but that does not mean that there are no other interesting things for you to do.
Consider wandering through a park under an umbrella if the rain is light. But if you prefer to be inside on a wet day, Perth delivers! Are you a fan of the speakeasy environment? Look for the famous red telephone box, the entrance to the popular Jazz Cellar. Or head to Swan Valley and look for a cozy brunch spot. Whether you want to see world-class art, play games, or watch a movie, you are spoiled for choice when it comes to fun activities to do on a rainy day in Perth.
Looking for even more things to do in Perth on a rainy day? Check out these other guides:
Best Brunch In Perth: The Definitive Guide
Everything You Need To Know About Shopping In Perth
The Best Museums In Perth