Every cloud has a silver lining, as they say. In this case, the rain clouds may turn into an awesome family day together. Whether you want to bunker down indoors or head afar on a wet weather outing, these 21 indoor activities for teens will provide some great inspiration.
Indoor activities at home for teens
Learn a language
Stuck indoors? An ideal time to pick up a new hobby! Language learning apps make teaching yourself French, Japanese and more a piece of gateau. Duolingo is totally free and run by an owl (if you know, you know!) but we also like the sound of Babbel. Or take things up a notch and learn coding instead. SoloLearn, Grasshopper and Encode are great apps for beginners.
Listen to audio books and podcasts
Reading is a tried and tested indoor activity to keep teens occupied. Shake it up a bit with podcasts and audiobooks from Spotify, Audible and even your local library’s preferred platforms.
Sewing shops like Spotlight or Lincraft often sell jewellery making kits, but you can pick up simple supplies at your nearest two-dollar shop. All you need are some beads and line or wire.
Reduce your waste and jump on board the reusable plastics train. Swap cling wrap for beeswax wrap – here’s a handy guide to making your own.
Launch a sourdough or kombucha starter
Here’s an activity to keep the hipster teens happy indoors. A sourdough starter is a live culture made by flour and water, which starts to ferment and create its own natural yeast. You can use small portions of it to make your own dough. To kick off your kombucha, make a ‘scoby’ with tea, sugar and some pre-made kombucha.
Play live trivia
COVID-19 lockdown brought with it the joys of pub trivia online. Form a team and compete for top trivia dog with live streamed trivia games, or check out a website such as Kahoot or Sporcle.
Day spa at home
Chop up some cucumber circles, sit back and relax! Face masks, manicures and more are best served with tea and the sound of rain falling on the roof.
Make music online
DIY DJing is made easy with a number of online music-making programs. Lay down some funky beats on Figure, Garageband and more.
Binge on movies
Watching a movie is everyone’s favourite rainy day activity, so go all out and stay in for a movie marathon. Harry Potter, anyone?
Indoor activities for teens that are out of the house
Bunk down in a bookshop
Whether you make a purchase or not, there’s something charming about browsing the shelves. Better Read Than Dead is a popular pick in Sydney’s Newtown, although Dymocks and Kinokinuya near Town Hall trump it when it comes to scale. Book Mark in Bendigo, Avid Reader in Brisbane and Boffins Books in Perth enchanted us with their names alone. The Paperback has been an icon in Melbourne since the 1960s.
Indulge in some retail therapy
Shopping until you drop is surely one of the best indoor activities for teens. For the heavyweight shopping centres carrying popular brands, try Pacific Fair on the Gold Coast or Pitt Street Mall in Sydney. Rundle Mall in Adelaide and Chadstone Shopping Centre in Melbourne are also two of Australia’s most-visited centres.
Read more: The Mall of America
Break out of an Escape Room
Get your mind working hard and set yourselves free by following the clues and taking risks. Set up to suit different themes and levels of difficulty, every major city is bound to have a few Escape Rooms to crack.
Ok, so this one isn’t technically indoor activities for teens, but unless you’re the Wicked Witch of the West, you won’t melt under a drop or two of rain. If you’re willing to don a raincoat and gumboots, there are plenty of rainy day activities for teens waiting in the great outdoors.
The Northern Territory wet season is actually the best time to view the Litchfield National Park waterfalls, or Jim Jim and Twin Falls in Kakadu. You’ll have to do so by air, as many Top End roads flood at this time of year.
Live it up with a high tea
Scones and sandwiches are everyone’s cup of tea! This indoor activities is something teens, tweens, and adults alike will enjoy.
If you’re feeling fancy or just want a nice afternoon treat, check out Tea and Niceties at Mount Tambourine, the Flying Trunk in Adelaide, the Hydro Majestic in Katoomba or the Sofitel Darling Harbour. It seems High Tea has long been a tradition in Melbourne. It has been running since 1883 at Hotel Windsor and 1891 at Hopetoun Tea Rooms.
Wax lyrical to your favourite celebs
Snap a selfie with your celebrity crush at one of Australia’s two waxworks venues. Madame Tussauds is located in Sydney’s Darling Harbour, and you’ll find more familiar faces at the Gold Coast Wax Museum.
Meander the markets
Adelaide Central Markets is completely undercover and open from Tuesdays to Saturdays. There is a dedicated and free Market Minis program to help kids learn about fresh food. Melbourne’s Queen Victoria Markets are another family favourite.
Make like Willy Wonka
Nothing soothes the soul more on a rainy day than a steaming cup of hot chocolate. Turn your day into a sweet one with a trip to Haigh’s Chocolates in Adelaide, the Blue Mountains Chocolate Factory in NSW, or House of Anvers in La Trobe, not far from Launceston in Tasmania.
Go on a ghost tour
A rainy day provides the perfect backdrop for this indoor activity for teens.
Get you spook on and brave the dark tunnels and haunted halls of Australia’s convict past. Old Melbourne Gaol runs great family tours, as does Adelaide Gaol. The Q Station in Manly, Sydney, is not for the faint hearted!
Gaze in a gallery
Art-lovers can soak up anything from Picasso and Pollock to home-grown Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander masterpieces. The National Gallery of Victoria is split into NGV International and NGV Australia. The National Gallery of Canberra, MCA in Sydney and MAGNT in Darwin are worth a look. Quirky and controversial MONA in Hobart is best suited to older kids as it deals with some grown-up subject matter.
Go indoor skydiving
You wouldn’t think that skydiving could make it onto a list of indoor activities for teens. But thanks to a pressurised air tunnel, you can enjoy the sensation of skydiving indoors at iFLY venues on the Gold Coast, Brisbane, Melbourne, Perth and Sydney.
For beginners and pros alike, indoor rock-climbing centres are perfect for keeping physical but staying out of the rain. When it comes to indoor exercise with a twist, why not also try ice-skating? There are rinks around Australia, such as Xtreme Ice Arena in Perth and Macquarie Centre Ice Rink in Sydney.
Sophie is a die-hard pasta lover, beach-goer and theatre fanatic hit hard with the travel bug. When exploring new places, Sophie loves straying from the beaten path and chatting with locals about the best places to grab a bite to eat.