We might be in the Sunshine State, but we get our fair share of rainy days, or more typically, afternoon thunderstorms that pop up, especially in the summer months. Don’t settle for staying cooped up in your hotel room, though—check out our list of fun things to do around Greater Fort Lauderdale when it’s too wet to be outside.

Artful Outing

Run for cover at the many art museums throughout Greater Fort Lauderdale. In downtown Fort Lauderdale, the NSU Museum of Art Fort Lauderdale boasts 25,000 square feet of exhibition space filled with sculptures, paintings, mixed media, photography, and more. Meanwhile, the Coral Springs Museum of Art in Coral Springs also offers rotating exhibitions from local and internationally recognized artists. You can not only enjoy art but also create art at the Art and Culture Center/Hollywood. Finally, the Wiener Museum of Decorative Arts in Dania Beach has stunning displays of ceramic and glass art formed into items you’ll never believe.

Man laying on a bench in front of an art installation in the NSU Museum in Fort Lauderdale

Chalk It Up To Science

If science gets your senses tingling, the massive Museum of Discovery and Science in downtown Fort Lauderdale will keep you busy all day long. Spanning two floors, there are more than 200 interactive exhibits the whole family can enjoy. Everyone will also enjoy getting up close and personal with dinosaurs, experiencing Antarctica’s glaciers, or catching a movie at the five-story-tall IMAX theater. Don’t miss the antics of the museum’s resident otters as they swim and play in the Otter Habitat on the first floor. 

Pick Your Favorite Beer

Breweries are cropping up faster than a summer afternoon thunderstorm throughout Greater Fort Lauderdale; certainly too many to name in just a few sentences! Funky Buddha Brewery in Oakland Park has plenty of beers on tap as well as a full kitchen, games, TV sets, and tours of the facility. Tarpon River Brewing also offers food and drink to enjoy while you play cornhole with friends, and LauderAle is conveniently located right by the airport, so take a friend after scooping them up at arrivals. Gulf Stream Brewing Company has lots of events and games as well as a wide range of brews on tap - including the official Visit Lauderdale Everyone Under the Sun beer - and great pizza. 

tarpon river brewery

Catch A Movie

See your favorite stars on the big screen at movie theaters throughout Greater Fort Lauderdale. There’s certain to be one just around the corner from you, but the most iconic is the Gateway Cinema in Fort Lauderdale. Open since 1951, it’s seen its share of blockbusters, film festivals, and indie flicks, and was the location of the premiere of Where the Boys Are in 1960. 

Local Flair

Rainy days are also a good opportunity to check out those cultural sites that you haven’t had a chance to experience yet. Wreck Bar at B Ocean Resort is a must-see for its daily mermaid shows, entertaining visitors since it got its start in the ‘50s. Historical homes that can be enjoyed on rainy days include the Historic Stranahan House Museum and the Bonnet House Museum and Gardens, both located in Fort Lauderdale, as well as the Old Davie School Museum and the Sample-McDougald House in Pompano Beach.

Mermaid Show at Fort Lauderdale's Iconic Wreck Bar

Go Shopping

You’ve earned it, so take your credit card to the many malls and shopping centers throughout Greater Fort Lauderdale. The Sawgrass Mills outlet mall in Sunrise is the most impressive with more than 350 stores, including 70 luxury brands. Nearby in Plantation is Broward Mall with department stores Dillard’s, JCPenney, and Macy’s as well as your favorite brands. The mall also has features Young at Art Museum and Island SPACE Caribbean Museum. Overlooking the Intracoastal Waterway is the two-story Galleria Fort Lauderdale, with department stores Macy’s and Dillards as well as H&M. 

Enjoy A Show

Escape the rain and cozy up for some live theater at the endless venues throughout Greater Fort Lauderdale. The Broward Center for the Performing Arts and the The Parker (formerly known as The Parker Playhouse) in Fort Lauderdale both offer jam-packed schedules of musicals, plays, comedy, music, and more. The Coral Springs Center for the Arts also celebrates the performing arts with more than 200,000 visitors per year. For concerts, the FLA Live Arena in Sunrise draws some of the biggest musical acts, from rappers and bands to orchestras and pop stars.

Aerial view of the BB&T Center in Sunrise, FL

Indoor Sports

With laser tag, go-karts, and other indoor games, staying in has never been more fun. Xtreme Action Park in Fort Lauderdale will tap into your inner kid with a trampoline park, escape rooms, arcade games, laser tag, go-karts, and more. Dave & Buster's in Hollywood also has loads of games, from arcade games and billiards to a thirst-quenching bar menu. The same fun can be found at Off the Wall, which has locations in Davie and Coconut Creek. If your little ones have energy to let loose, Rocket World in Pembroke Pines is the perfect place to let them run wild through the space-themed indoor playground. 

Go-Kart Racing at Fort Lauderdale's Xtreme Action Park