How to Make the Most of Unexpected Weather

We’ve all had those vacation days that feel ruined by the weather. You’re all set to relax on the beach and instead find yourself in the middle of a tropical storm. You have dreams of warm sunny but not-too-hot days exploring the city, but instead there’s a sudden cold front, it’s pouring with rain, or there’s an unprecedented heat wave. How do you make the best of the unexpected weather? Here are our top tips for saving your vacation:

Mindset & Preparedness

Having the right mindset will change everything. Always look for the “silver lining” and the sudden opportunities the unexpected weather affords you. Keeping a positive mood will drastically affect your vacation, and you’ll find yourself enjoying the turn of events instead of bemoaning the situation.

The first step to a good mindset is preparing yourself beforehand. You should start checking the weather the moment you start packing. Knowing that you might run into rain or extreme heat will help you make alternative plans and keep your expectations realistic. Always check the weather app again in the morning before you head out for the day.

[Photo Credit: Ann via Shared Adventures – read about her hot but lovely trip to Thailand here! ]

Be flexible with your plans, and look at the weather as a chance to slow down and relax. Have a big lie-in, take it slow, and savor the fact that you’re on vacation.

Have the Right Gear

Even the most consistent places can have a sudden change in weather. Always pack one thing to keep you cool/warm even if you’re pretty sure you’re not going to need it. You’ll be glad for the just-in-case item.

If rain is a possibility on your trip you’ll want to focus on being waterproof. A lightweight jacket, a travel umbrella, dry bags for your stuff, and more-or-less waterproof shoes will go a long way to improve your mood.

If you’re traveling in the height of summer, or to a particularly hot & humid locale, protecting yourself from the sun should be a top priority. Pack sunscreen, sunglasses, a water bottle, loose light layers, a hat, and most importantly a fan!

Although it may seem more effort than it’s worth, we’ve found an old-fashioned hand fan to be light, easy to carry, and a complete lifesaver on the hottest Italian days.

[Photo Credit: Liz via Shared Adventures]

Go Out and Enjoy the Weather

If you’ve packed the right gear, and checked the weather forecast to make sure it’s safe – we highly recommend braving the weather! There’s an old saying that “there’s no such thing as bad weather, only unsuitable clothing.” And there are so many benefits to going out and getting a little wet or cold anyway.

You’ll have the place to yourself. This is the perfect time to visit the biggest and best attractions. Most of the crowds will be huddling indoors and you’ll get to enjoy these amazing places virtually crowd-free.

[Photo Credit: Liz via Shared Adventures]

If it’s safe and just a drizzle you can still enjoy a walk on the beach – you were going to get wet anyway, right? Grab your umbrella, and your waterproof shoes and enjoy the quiet of a world to yourself. You won’t melt in the rain and you can enjoy those romantic storybook vibes you see in the movies.

a rainbow across the rainy green hills of Snowdonia Wales

This is the perfect time to enjoy atmospheric photos, beautiful rainbows, and explore spots you might have missed otherwise.

[Photo Credit: Ann via Shared Adventures – Read about her UK Adventure here! ]

Find the best Indoor Activities

It’s important to know when to stay inside too. Whether it’s a big thunder and lightning storm or an unbearable heatwave, sometimes it’s safer to stay indoors.

Museums – Extreme weather is a great time to buy a museum pass and see what your destination has to offer. Even the smallest towns and unlikely beach destinations have some interesting museums available!

In Belgium Beth showing off her chocolate- shopping bags in the Brussels Shopping Mall

Shopping – Head into the malls, the boutique shops, and the bookstores. The inclement weather is a good excuse to buy all those souvenirs and spend the day choosing the perfect memento.

[Photo Credit: Beth via Shared Adventures – read about her adventure to Brussels, Amsterdam and Paris here! ]

Foodies – If you enjoy local foods and local drinks then extreme weather is your friend! You can look into a cooking class, try a new restaurant, or just find a local café or pub. Feel like a local as you spend the day chatting in the bar or enjoying authentic local cuisine you may have never found otherwise. Cafés are the perfect place to catch up on all those postcards you want to send back home or update your travel journal.

Hotels/ Spa – Enjoy a very lazy day in your hotel and at your hotel spa! You are on vacation, after all. Take the time to actually rest and relax by sleeping in, ordering room service, playing board games, and staying in that cozy hotel bathrobe all day. Complete the sense of relaxation with a trip to the spa for a massage or mud bath.

Whether you choose to brave the weather or stay indoors, inclement weather doesn’t have to ruin your vacation. With the right mindset and gear, it can lead to the best stories, the most epic photos, or the most relaxing day! The most important thing to remember: When traveling — embrace the unexpected.

If you’re ready to enjoy a fabulous adventure no matter the weather – let us know! We’re always ready to help you start planning.


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Clare and Mark (family cruise to Alaska)

The level of service we experienced was out of this world (and we did NOT make it easy on Ann). We weren’t quite sure where we wanted to go, when we would be able to go, or what “vibe” we were going for. After asking us some key questions (what we liked, didn’t like, why, etc.) Ann helped us narrow down our trip details and planned the honeymoon of our dreams. She helped book some of our excursions, answered some emergency questions while abroad and was always available/willing to help. I think it’s safe to say we won’t be using anyone else for future travel planning – Ann is a rockstar!

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