What are some of the things that you do when the weather becomes disagreeable for outdoor activity? Aside from the obvious museum & galleries, are there any creative ideas out there?
Where? And for whom -- adults, children? It would help if you could be a bit more specific.
Yes, well that would be helpful. I am middled-aged without children. I enjoy the countryside, local history, cuisine, meeting locals, etc. I would either travel alone or with my spouse. I was purposefully vague in the hopes everyone would post their thoughts and ideas for others who do not fall into my category.
Again, where? Possible activities might be different depending on if you are talking about the UK or Italy or somewhere else.
Have tea. Find interesting places to have lunch or dinner. Shop or browse in the famous department stores -- Harrod's, Liberty, Harvey Nichols, etc. Covent Garden has a large indoor area of shops. See a play or concert.
In Ireland having a stop at a pub in a small village or rural area is a good way to get to meet people and pass an hour or two. It is not at all necessary to partake of alcoholic beverages as any pub will have soft drinks,coffee or tea. It is especially cozy if there happens to be a fire burning in the fireplace. There is a song that says something like"What more diversion can a man desire than to sit and down by an ale house fire?"
If you are not part of a large group it is extremely easy to strike up a conversation.
Maggie, in London I went to the Record Store (do they still call it a record store?? LOL). I really like a lot of the BBC shows and have a Region Free DVD player at home. So I browsed the DVD section and even picked up a few new UK bands or UK shows.
I also hunted down a few charity shops to see if I can find a treasure. Unfortunately the last time I went to London, I had some friends who were less than happy to go shopping. But, since you're a single traveler, you can do it at your own pace.
If you're writing a journal of your trip you can either find a coffee house and put together your journal, or if you're a blogger, find an internet cafe to blog or write a quick email to family/friends back home.
Nancy, sorry I'm so thick :o) I was looking for generalities, and creativity, similar to what the others have posted so far. I don't typically have a serious itinerary when I travel. I'm partial to being spontaneous. Sadly though, I don't seem to have a creative mind. There are some very creative folks that post on this site, and I was hoping to pick their brain, as oftentimes I'm apt to overlook the obvious! Trying too hard to think of something I suppose. That said, as far as countries are concerned, I am partial to the UK; Scotland & Northern England in particular, and perhaps Ireland. I've not yet traveled to southwest England, perhaps someday.
I like to visit a library to read the local papers and magazines. It's an interesting peek inside the local culture and also useful to find out what events are happening in town.
I've also gone to universities to attend music or drama performances or view student art exhibits.
Another idea is stopping in at a senior's centre or care home to volunteer for an hour or two. A friendly chat or game of cards might brighten someone's day while you have the opportunity to hear some great local stories.
I was in Scotland last week and toured the Glamis Castle grounds in a lite rain. I went on the walk because I was staying with a family from there and they wanted to let the kids get outside and run. When I was younger I was a soldier and don't mind getting wet, which we did. When I explained to them that in the US it would be almost unheard of for a family including two elderly people and two small children to be touring the castle gardens in the rain, one of them said "If we weren't going to come outside when it rained, we'd never leave the house".
I say all that to say this, take a lite rain jacket and don't change single thing you have planned. Enjoy the country for what it is, rain and all. You'd be suprised how much better a cup of coffee and a cookie taste when you're soaking wet!
Maggie - Carry a very small collapsable umbrella and enjoy everything in the rain. We were in London, Bruges and Amsterdam last fall and it rained about half the trip. We didn't miss anything, but we did take advantage of the sun for a canal boat tour in Bruges. Actually, strolling through neighborhoods and shopping areas in the rain became very memorable experiences. When there was a downpour, we headed into a cafe or museum - many of which we wouldn't have gone to if it was not raining. Other than that, we didn't change our plans much because of the weather.