TOP 70 Rainy Day Ideas and Activities For Kids In Sydney

  • Family
ellaslist COVID-19 update: Please note that all the information on the website is correct at the time of publication. Please check the relevant website before visiting a venue or destination for the latest COVID-19 information. ellaslist is not responsible for any cancellations or closures.

A whole day indoors with kids is always a L-O-N-G one, especially with toddlers and preschoolers. We suggest going out for at least a few hours to save your sanity and your home from looking like it’s been kid-bombed! Here are our favourite indoor and outdoor kids' activities for chilly and wet weather days in Sydney.

GO BOWLING: Strike and Zone Bowling have locations all over Sydney. And there’s a 1960’s style bowling alley in Mascot.

INDOOR MINIGOLF: Visit Putt Planet for some fun indoor minigolf at Miranda. This is one seriously quirky 18-hole putt-putt course – you'll feel as if you've stepped into Mombasa as you golf through bustling marketplaces and even sewers. More mini golf for kids here.

GO SWIMMING: Find some of our favourite Sydney indoor pools here. as well as those pools that are heated throughout the year. Our top pick? Sydney Olympic Aquatic Centre's EPIC Splasher's Water Playground where it feels like summer all year round. 

VISIT A KID-FRIENDLY MUSEUMWe love The Powerhouse Museum, especially their renovated FREE Wiggles Exhibition (Ultimo), The Australian Museum and their awesome Kidspace for 0-5’s (City Centre - currently closed due to renovations), the Museum of Contemporary Art, the Justice and Police Museum (Circular Quay), Hyde Park Barracks (City Centre - currently closed due to renovations) and the Museum of Fire (Penrith).

GO TO A GALLERY: If you can keep the kiddies on reasonably low volume, have a wander ’round the MCA and their fantastic FREE family trail (Circular Quay) or Art Gallery NSW (Botanic Gardens). White Rabbit Gallery (Chippendale) often has interesting art on display as well as regular kids' activities.

VISIT A LIBRARY OR PLAYGROUP: Make a trip to your local library, toy library or join a playgroup (weekdays in term time). We recommend a visit to the brand new Green Square Library to check out the rainbow reading room, guitar library, baby grand piano and the hanging airplane, it's amazing! For other libraries, check out our guide to Sydney's best libraries for kids. 

PLAY TOURIST AND VISIT: SEA LIFE Sydney Aquarium and WILD LIFE Sydney Zoo for some awesome animal encounters, or Madame Tussauds for a celebrity sighting (all at Darling Harbour), Sydney Tower Eye for spectacular views (City Centre, access via Westfield). Save big with a Sydney Big Ticket and get access to all attractions.

INDOOR PLAYCENTRESWe have a HUGE list of epic indoor playcentres in every corner of Sydney – check it out! 

GO CLIMBING: From around 4 years of age kids can have a go at indoor rock climbing – check each centre for the minimum age: Sydney Indoor Climbing Gym at St Peters and Villawood, Climbfit at St Leonards, Rockhouse in Brookvale, The Edge Climbing Centre in Castle Hill or Climboz in Blacktown, Sky Climb which is part of Sky Zone. Also, the super cool Turbo Climb in Bankstown.
More Kid-Friendly Indoor Climbing Centres.

ICE-SKATE: Macquarie’s Ice Rink has been renovated and is awesome! Or go West for Penrith’s Ice PalaceLiverpool Catholic Club Ice Rink and Canterbury’s Olympic Ice Rink.
More of Sydney’s Best Place to Take the Kids Ice-Skating

VIRTUAL REALITY ROOMS: Experience a whole new world with the super-cool Virtual Reality Rooms in the city. See what we thought of it here.

MOVIES: See what’s on at EVENT CINEMAS or HOYTS – Mums and bubs movies run weekdays during term. Hoyts Junior shows preschooler movies on Saturdays and Sundays and some Tuesdays during term times.

ART & CRAFT CENTRES: Get messy and let someone else clean up! Plaster Master Fun in Bondi, Plaster Painting Studios at EQ Moore Park or Jenny’s Painted Pots in the northern beaches. Make a furry friend at Build a Bear centres in Penrith, Miranda, Castle Hill or the city.

SHOPPING CENTRES WITH INDOOR PLAY AREAS: There are play areas at Westfield in Chatswood, Burwood, Miranda, Parramatta and Eastgardens – The Broadway Shopping Centre has a good one for under 6s – while The Homemaker Centre in Alexandria has a cute kids' playground, the Macquarie Centre has the fabulous Chipmunks within the complex, and go to Ikea at Tempe for super cheap meatballs and a play in Smaland, their supervised play area. Marrickville Metro has a cute kids' play area and Top Ryde City has a great enclosed play area with a cafe right next door! If you’re anywhere near Castle Hill, make sure you visit Jitterbugs Playcentre in Castle Towers. Our favourite? Monkey Bar, the epic and FREE indoor play at Rhodes Waterside!
More Indoor Play Centres in Shopping Malls

PUBS WITH KIDS' PLAY AREAS: Try Pennant Hills HotelBelrose Hotel and Five Dock RSL, Club Central in Menai, Tradies Club at Gymea, The Taren Point Hotel, North Ryde RSLThe Castle Hill RSL, Rouse Hill’s Australian Hotel and Brewery, or the incredible Coogee Pavilion!
Check out Sydney’s Best Kid-Friendly Pubs.

KIDS SHOWS: Check our listing to see if there’s a kids performance on today

GET CREATIVE AT HOME: Get the kids in the kitchen and bake away!

CRAFTY WEBSITES: childhood 101be a fun mumno time for flashcardsmake and takes. Make your own with this easy play dough recipe.

PAINT: Cover the kitchen floor in butcher's paper, strip the kids, get out all the paint and let them at it. The after mess bath is also a good way to fill in time!

ACTIVE: Set up an indoor obstacle course or build a cubby house or fort under the table. Tidy your kid's bedroom with your little one – they’ll rediscover all the toys they’ve forgotten about.

CREATE: Go through your recycling bin for cardboard boxes, cartons and tubs, give the kids glue, glitter, felt tips, crayons, paint, small dry pasta and foil and let them at it.

MOVIE TIME: Make real popcorn and snuggle up with stories or a family movie.

BUILD: Get the Lego, building blocks & jigsaws out.

PLAY: Try some ideas from our Unplug and Play section!!

Have you signed up to our newsletter? Join ellaslist to get the best family and kid-friendly events, venues, classes and things to do NEAR YOU!




Catherine Quailey

Aug 12 2014

Really helpful. Thank you!



Jul 16 2014

Excellent ideas! Thanks