If you travel to the Sunshine Coast in fall, winter, or spring, you’re almost guaranteed to encounter some unpredictable weather – rain included. If you let this deter you, then you’ll be missing out on the joy of a lush rainforest walk or a cozy café warm-up. Instead, pack a raincoat and tackle stormy days with these top 10 ways to spend a rainy day on the Sunshine Coast.

1. Walk Under a Rainforest Canopy

There are enough walks and hikes on the Sunshine Coast to keep you exploring for weeks. Many of these trails are deep in the rainforest, below a canopy of green, keeping you relatively dry in rainy weather. Walk the trails in Cliff Gilker Park and Hidden Grove or head to the provincial parks of Skookumchuck Narrows or Inland Lake. Read on here for more trails and hikes to explore.  

Waterfall Viewing From Trail Boardwalk
Although it’s not raining in this photo, Cliff Gilker Park is a great place to spend a rainy day.

2. Read, Relax, and Get Creative at The Gumboot Café

The Gumboot Café is a local favourite on the Sunshine Coast. The cozy atmosphere here is amped up with local art adoring every piece of wall space, homemade pastries, and local beer on tap. Sit back and relax, watch the world go by, read a book, or dive into some creative work in this inspiring space.

3. Grab a Flight and Play Games at a Local Brewery

Explore the Brewers Coast and taste the local beer at the four breweries and one cidery located between Gibsons and Powell River. Brewery hop or post up with a flight of beer and challenge your friends to a game of Scrabble. Please drink responsibly and have a designated driver.

The Bricker Cider Company

4. Warm Up in The SPA Garden at Painted Boat

Nothing beats warming up in a hot tub, sauna, and steam room on a cool, rainy day. The SPA Garden at Painted Boat Resort Spa & Marina offers a drop-in rate for those who want to cozy up to an outdoor fire, soak in the hot pool, relax under a waterfall, and warm up in the sauna. Drop-in rates are $45 or complimentary with a massage package.

5. Tour the Art Galleries

It’s no secret that the Sunshine Coast is home to more artists per capita than almost anywhere else in Canada. A great way to spend a drizzly day is to tour the galleries open to the public. Read on here for a list of galleries and museums to visit for an art-fueled day.

6. Watch a Film at The Patricia Theatre

This architectural wonder in Powell River is the oldest continuously running cinema in Canada. First opened in 1915, The Patricia Theatre feels as if you’ve stepped back in time with a stained-glass canopy, French velvet curtains, and murals of misty landscapes. Catch a show – open nightly and for weekend matinees – for a little reprieve from the rain.

7. Discover the Gibsons Public Market

The Gibsons Public Market is the only indoor market on the Sunshine Coast. Here you can find local vendors selling chocolate delights, local produce, bouquets of flowers, and more. Sit down for a bite to eat at Emelle’s Market Bistro or tour the Nicholas Sonntag Marine Education Centre to discover the wonders of Howe Sound.

8. Tour the Historic Townsite of Powell River

Grab an umbrella, slip on your rain boots, and head out for a walking tour of Powell River’s Historic Townsite. Established in the early 1900’s, you can see the original hospital, church, provincial buildings, and the first residential homes in the town.

9. Challenge Yourself at an Indoor Climbing Gym

Test your strength and agility on a boulder problem or by reaching new heights on belay. In Powell River, you’ll find the Powell River Climbing Co-Op inside the brand new Townsite Market, with both bouldering and top-roping options. Sechelt is home to The Hanger Climbing Lounge – a bouldering gym offering drop-in rates and shoe rentals – and Straight Up Climbing with TruBlu Autobelay systems, family drop-in rates, and rental equipment. Both facilities welcome beginners to advanced climbers and are a great way to spend an afternoon.

10. Hunt for Thrift Store Treasures

The Sunshine Coast is a thrift shoppers paradise with more than a dozen second hand and consignment stories spread between Gibsons, Sechelt, and Powell River. Spend rainy days hunting for your next favourite coat, antique, or funky accessory. Find that next great treasure ready to be loved again.

Rain or shine, there is an abundance of experiences to be had on the Sunshine Coast. Pack a raincoat and rain boots and you’ll be ready for them all.