Rain Season: What to do on a rainy day
It is the beginning of rain season in the Bay Area. We have already had a few days of consistent rain- great for the drought, bad for your cabin-fevered child. So what is there to do in the Bay Area when the drops are pouring and the playgrounds are too soaked to visit? Here are eighteen places you can take your children in the Bay Area where they can have fun inside, run their energy out, and stay dry. Click the link on any of their names and it will redirect you to their pages on my site which has the full business information, complete descriptions, and more photos.
1. Kids Gym in Berkeley: Previously called Spectrum is an indoor gym with all sorts of fun things for kids to do. The gym aspect has tunnels, trampolines, rock climbing walls, slides, swings, a zip line, etc. for children to go crazy on and get out all of their pent up energy. The center also has a quiet reading room, a train room, a puzzle center, giant chalkboard, and a dress up room. So whatever your child is looking for they will be accommodated here.
2. Lost World: Lost World is located in Livermore, while it is a lengthy drive if you are located in the East Bay it is well worth it! Lost World is a giant indoor fun zone. Featuring mini golf, laser tag, arcade games, and the funnest gigantic indoor climbing structure you will ever lay your eyes on! Complete with slides, swings, ball pits, ball shooters, trampolines, and lots of crazy twisting climbing paths. Bonus they have couches for the parents to lounge on.
3. California Academy of Sciences: This is a great place to take your kids for fun for the whole day, so many things to see and do including a giant aquarium on the bottom level. The rain forest area is an awesome walk up a circular enclosed section with butterflies swirling around your head. There's a planetarium, cute penguins, and new monthly exhibits. It's a little pricey so make it count, if you go, spend the whole day!
4. Exploratorium: So many science experiments in one place! There are so many experiments with cause and effect, all of which are hands on for children. Kids can spend many many hours here exploring all the different activities. This is a very interactive place that will capture children's little minds.
5. Chabot Space and Science Center: If your child is into space and the great beyond this is a perfect place to go! I'd say it's for sort of the older crowd but they have a playroom for little ones too. There is a planetarium where you can lean back and catch a star show. If you go at certain times the giant telescope is also open for star gazing.
6. Lawrence Hall of Science: Everywhere you walk there is something new to see and a new science experiment to do. LHOS always has roving exhibits so there is always something new each time you go. It is a very educational experience. If the actual exhibits aren't enough, then at least there is plenty of space to run around. Children love the balls flying over the air tunnel and the plastic pin wall that can make impressions of their faces.
7. Oakland Museum: Not the first place that comes to mind when I think of family fun- but it is! There are so many floors with so many different exhibits, everyone is bound to connect with one of them. There is something for everyone to see and do. Even your smallest child will be entranced by the koi fish in the pond, which will swim right up to you and say hi.
8. Bay Area Discovery Museum: Located in Sausalito right under the beautiful Golden Gate Bridge Bay Area Discovery museum is one of the funnest places to take your child to explore. True it is funnest on a clear day because there is a large outdoors area to play in. There are also many indoor activities in different halls including the fun train room.
9. Habitot: This place is for smaller children as the name implies Habi- "tot." So don't bring your 8 year olds there to have a good time. But if you are rolling with a younger crowd this is such a fun place to take them. They have different themed rooms from dramatic play, arts, water play, reading room, and the very fun spaceship room complete with astronaut gear.
10. Aquarium of the Bay: Located at pier 39 in San Francisco, this aquarium is a fun tourist attraction in the middle of it all. There is a movie theater playing applicable short movies, an underwater tunnel or two, a petting station, and the very cute otter exhibit.
11. Marine Mammal Center: If your child is in to marine biology or saving animals this is a great place to bring them to learn about rescuing seals and sea lions. You can purchase a rented headphone tour and it will explain how the whole place works as you take a self-guided tour.
12. Ifly Indoor skydiving: This won't occupy too much of your time but it will be an invigorating blast up in to a wind tunnel that your children will never soon forget. There isn't much running around room and it is pretty pricey but feeling how it feels to soar like a bird is a memorable moment.
13. Albany Bowl: Bowling done right. This is one of the better bowling alleys for children in the Bay Area. Not only do they have an arcade but they also have a restaurant as well so you can get all your needs met in one place.
14. Albany Aquatic Center: Indoor swimming in a warm pool- doesn't get much better than that! During family recreation hours there are noodles available to play with and lap lanes open for more advanced swimmers. This place is one of the few pools that is open all year long.
15. Head Over Heels: Head Over Heels has open gym play for your little gymnast available at certain times on weekends. Everyone will have fun here. Because you can bounce, roll, tumble, jump, and swing all over the padded mats and equipment. My daughter's favorite is swinging on the rope into the foam pit.
16. ChuckeCheese: Not my personal favorite spot, but kids love it! Arcade games, coupled with tickets, cheap prizes, crawling tubes, and cheesy pizza. Sounds like a fun time for any child with a pulse.
17. Sky High Sports: Trampolines galore! Literally wall to wall trampolines, this place is sure to get all of your child's pent up energy from the rainy day blues out! Even letting them jump for an hour will have them leaving exhausted and ready to go cuddle up with a book at home.
18. Plank: This is a fun place for bowling, eating, and arcade games. Located in Oakland's Jack London Square it is sort of the new "in" place to hang out. Which means it can get crowded with at night but is pretty chill on a Sunday afternoon.
**If none of these places work for your family, you can always take your child to Target and let them run up and down the aisles =-) That's what we used to do!