Your guide to wet weather adventures in Lake Mac

Rainy day fun

While sunny days are best for enjoying the outdoor adventures and natural beauty for which Lake Macquarie is renowned, a rainy morning or afternoon on the lake can offer a charm of its own. Here are some of the many activities you can enjoy to keep everyone entertained when the rainclouds roll in.

Head to the mall

You’ll find a dazzling array of rainy-day diversions at Charlestown Square, the region’s largest shopping and entertainment centre, in Charlestown. See out a spot of unexpected wet weather by browsing the 100-plus fashion boutiques in the complex or grab a bite to eat from one of the many restaurants and cafes in South Piazza dining hub.

Take the kids to play the latest games at Timezone Charlestown or let them loose in the colourful playground at Kids World Charlestown. You can also send pins flying at Strike Bowling and play a hilarious round of mini golf at Holey Moley Golf Club.

Catch a movie

Wait out a rainstorm as you take in the latest movie blockbuster or family-friendly release at Charlestown Square’s Reading Cinema or Hoyts Charlestown, on the Pacific Highway a short walk from Charlestown Square. Or step back in time and sink into the old-school plush red chairs at the Lake Cinema in Boolaroo, near Warners Bay. This friendly independent cinema harks back to the days of family-run suburban theatres, and even offers moviegoers a complimentary pre-screening cup of coffee, tea or Milo and a biscuit – perfect for warming up on a soggy day.

Linger in a library

Lake Macquarie’s libraries offer so much more than books, with author talks, exhibitions and events, school holiday activities, major festivals and workshops and more to keep both kids and adults occupied on a rainy day. Take a guided tour of the Sugar Valley Library Museum, kirantakamyar in Cameron Park, the latest addition to our line-up of libraries. Delve into the history of the lake at Speers Point Library, milyaba, or visit Swansea Library, kariyawangba, where you can plan the rest of your stay via the Lake Macquarie Visitor Information Centre, housed inside the library.

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Immerse in a world of art

Lose track of time as you take in the latest exhibition of contemporary art at the Museum of Art and Culture, yapang at Booragul, on the western side of the lake. Watch out for the return of blue skies over a hearty lunch at the museum’s light-filled Three Bears Cafe before browsing the art books and handcrafted jewellery and homewares at the Shop MAC gift store. Once the showers have cleared, explore the striking artworks of the Sculpture Park, dotted around the museum’s five hectares of leafy lakeside grounds.

Chill out in an ice-skating rink

Whether you’re escaping a gloomy wintry day or side-stepping a summer shower, discover a whole new world of frozen fun at Hunter Ice Skating Stadium at Warners Bay. Rug up in warm clothes and join the public skating sessions that are held most days, with additional sessions during the school holidays. Lace up your hired skates and test your balance on the ice – there are stability frames for beginners, and wheelchair users can join in the fun, as long as a responsible person helps with steering on the ice.

On selected autumn and winter weekends you can also thrill to all the action of an Australian Ice Hockey League game as the stadium’s home team the Newcastle Northstars takes on a visiting team.

Head to the Hillsborough precinct

Keep everyone happy by checking out the variety of indoor activities on offer along Hillsborough Road, a short drive from the foreshore in Warners Bay.

Fire up your competitive spirit as you settle in to a high-powered (and environmentally friendly) electric go-kart to race your companions around the multi-level track at Xtreme Karts Warners Bay, or channel your silly side as you bounce and leap your way around nearby Inflatable World

Experience a different kind of buzz at Pulse Climbing, an amazing indoor bouldering gym that offers a climbing surface and a great workout for just about everyone from beginners to the more accomplished.

If the rain looks like it’s settling in for the afternoon, take refuge at Dullboy’s Social Co, an all-in-one entertainment destination in the same complex as Xtreme Karts and Inflatable World. Here you can while away hours in a gaming arcade, crash in your nearest and dearest in dodgem cars or play a game or two of ten-pin bowling and refuel at American-style The Diner or refresh at Barcadia.

Wine & Dine

There's nothing like eating out when it's cold & gloomy outside. Whether it's a coffee in a cosy cafe, or a dine dining experience, Lake Macquarie has an abundance of options for all foodies! Check out our blog Eat Your Way Around The Lake for our top picks!

Eat your way around the lake