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  • Writer's pictureChelsea Johnson

5 Things for Families to do on a Rainy Day in Charleston

As the South’s wet and sultry summer is now upon us here in Charleston, I am reminded that it is always a good idea to have a backup plan for our beach days and BBQs in case we need to move things indoors in a hurry.

Whether your family needs a break from the heat and humidity or is escaping a sudden torrential downpour, these are some of our family’s favorite indoor activities in Charleston.

South Carolina Aquarium

Johnson Family Adventures at the South Carolina Aquarium

Located in Charleston’s historic harbor, kids will love exploring the abundance of aquatic life here. From the interactive sea turtle rescue center and dive shows in one of the largest ocean tanks in the U.S. to touch tanks filled with starfish, horseshoe crabs and stingrays, there’s plenty to keep them engaged. Don’t miss the rare albino alligator (I thought he was fake the 1st time we visited!), and feeding the stingrays is another highlight! 100 Aquarium Wharf, Charleston, SC 29401 Open daily from 9 a.m. – 4 p.m., building closes at 5 p.m.

Sea Turtle Rescue Center

One of the touch tanks!

The Children’s Museum of the Lowcountry

Located in the heart of historic downtown Charleston, this is the perfect spot for kids to burn off some energy! They can create masterpieces in the art room, explore a multi-level medieval castle, climb aboard a pirate ship, go grocery shopping in a miniature-size store, make a splash in the water play area and more! 25 Ann Street, Charleston, SC 29403

Water Play Fun at the Children’s Museum of the Lowcountry

North Charleston & American LaFrance Fire Museum


Honestly, I’m not sure who has more fun here- my husband or my kids! But there is a seriously impressive collection of beautifully-refurbished vintage firetrucks, a fire-truck simulator, indoor play area with fire pole, and kids can make their own badges- mine always beg to make more than the 1 they are allotted with our entry! 4975 Centre Pointe Drive, North Charleston, SC 29418 Open 7 Days a Week


Eliette practicing her driving skills- 6 going on 16!

boy in fireman hat

Couldn’t resist a fireman’s hat with a built-in siren!

The Charleston Museum

America’s 1st museum, located right in downtown Charleston, has rotating exhibits, several permanent displays that highlight Lowcountry history, as well as Kidstory, which is an awesome hands-on exhibit designed for children. You can opt to visit the museum by itself or tack on visits to 2 of Charleston’s historic houses- The Joseph Manigault House and The Heyward-Washington House. 360 Meeting Street Charleston, SC 29403

The H.L. Hunley Submarine replica outside The Charleston Museum

The H.L. Hunley Submarine dates back to the Civil War

The Alley

A cool little bowling alley in downtown Charleston, with vintage arcade games, a bar, and great food! 131 Columbus St., Charleston, SC 29403

If the weather is nice, check out some of our favorite area parks!

If you are planning a family trip to Charleston, South Carolina, I would absolutely love to help you and yours by creating a personalized itinerary.

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