Indoor and All-Weather Activities in Tonga
Has the tropical weather caught up with you? It’s not always sunny skies in Tonga but if it’s raining today, then chances are that it won’t be tomorrow or even this afternoon – the weather changes quickly and often in the islands of the South Pacific. Nevertheless, if you’re looking for something to do indoors or that’s still appropriate to do in rainy weather, then we’ve put together some ideas for things to do in Tonga on a rainy day in the list below!
While you’re here, you also might want to open Tonga Weather by Month: What is the Weather Like in Tonga? to learn more about the local climate.
1. Join a Culture Tour with Ancient Tonga
Stay out of the rain and learn about the Tongan culture on one of Tonga’s cultural tours. Ancient Tonga on Tongatapu offers interactive culture tours where you’ll learn about the food, crafts and medicine of Tonga under the cover of their fale. Find out more about Ancient Tonga in the 10 Best Culture Tours in Tonga. Similar experiences that can also be indoors are handicraft lessons, which we list in Where to Learn Tongan Handicrafts.
Location: Tamakautonga Road, Popua, Nuku’alofa.
2. Visit a Local Market
Markets, such as Talamahu Market in Nuku’alofa, the Pangai Market in Ha’apai, and ‘Utakalongalu Market in Neiafu are undercover making for a dry yet enjoyable way to spend some time out of the rain. Browse an array of impressive handicrafts, from woven baskets to tapa-cloth bags and more. You can also pick up some fresh locally-grown produce for a healthy snack. Learn more about the markets to visit in the 5 Best Markets in Tonga.
Location: All over Tonga! See the recommended markets and their locations in the link above.
3. Craft Your Own Tongan Souvenir at Tina’s Workshop
If marvelling at professionally made handicrafts wasn’t enough, Tina’s Workshop is a three-hour handicraft workshop to make your own Tongan sei (flower hairpiece) or tapa notebook! Immerse in the local culture, learn a new skill and meet interesting locals and travellers alike in this interactive workshop. The experience typically includes a traditionally cooked umu lunch, which you’ll watch being prepared at the beginning of the workshop, and then get to enjoy later.
Location: Fehoko Oceanic Arts Studio, Tamakautonga Road, Popua, Nuku’alofa, Tongatapu.
4. Swim in a Cave
Did you know that Tonga has an indoor swimming pool? It’s ‘Anahulu Cave on Tongatapu, a natural limestone cave with a freshwater pool ideal for swimming. You won’t even realise it’s raining when you’re exploring this beautiful cave. There is also the Veimumuni Cave in Vava’u, which is much smaller but also has a freshwater pool for a dip with a cave roof over your head. Learn more about Tonga’s caves in the 10 Best Caves in Tonga.
Location: Tongatapu and Vava’u. Check out the link above for caves and their locations.
5. Have a Spa Day
Rainy days are a good time to relax with an indoor activity, such as a massage or a yoga session under a sheltered pavilion. There are several day spas in Nuku’alofa to keep you occupied, while some of Tonga’s island resorts have massage fales to keep you dry when the wet weather hits. Find out more in the 5 Best Spas in Tonga.
Location: Tongatapu and Ha’apai. See the link above for recommended spas and their locations.
6. Learn Something New at a Museum
The universally renowned rainy day activity is going to the local museum. In Tonga, the Tonga National Museum is highly recommended to admire all sorts of ancient Tongan tools, from stone anchors to wooden headrests, and to get a fascinating insight into the way that Tongans lived hundreds of years ago. The museum has a very affordable fee and guided tours are provided by passionate and knowledgeable guides at no extra cost. Alternatively, you can walk around the hall self-guided thanks to the information displays. And that’s not the only museum in Tonga, so take a look at the 5 Best Museums in Tonga for more ideas.
Location: Upstairs in Queen Salote Memorial Hall, Taufa’ahau Road (opposite the Lulutai Airlines office), Nuku’alofa city centre, Tongatapu.
7. Try the Local Cuisine
You can always wait out the rain by enjoying a long breakfast, brunch, lunch or dinner at one of the local restaurants. While there are plenty of international cuisines to be had at Tonga’s restaurants, we recommend having a look for some of the Tongan dishes on the menu, such as ota ika or lu pulu. Check out the 10 Unique Foods in Tonga You Have to Try for more ideas, as well as recommended restaurants in the 20 Best Restaurants in Tonga.
Locations: All over Tonga! See the link above for restaurants and their locations.
8. Pray the Rain Away at a Local Church Service
If it happens to be raining at around 10 am on a Sunday, then it’s a good excuse to check out a local church service. Going to church is an integral part of the Tongan culture, where locals sing in beautiful harmonies throughout the service. Check out some of the churches you could be going to in the 10 Best Churches in Tonga for Tourists.
Location: All over Tonga! Although most churches welcome visitors, see the link above for recommended locations.
9. Get Some Retail Therapy in Nuku’alofa
After perusing the handicrafts markets, if you still have shopping fever, rest assured that Nuku’alofa has plenty more to offer in the way of boutiques and local designers. Browse locally designed dresses, shirts and accessories at Eiko-san Clothing, pick up Tongan spa products and homeware at Joy’s Gift Shop or scout out Koko Designs‘ cute coconut soap gift shop on the outskirts of town. See more local designers and boutiques in The Guide to Shopping in Tonga + The Best Places to Shop.
Location: All over Nuku’alofa! See recommendations and their locations in the link above, as well as in Where to Buy the Best Souvenirs in Tonga.
10. Do Some Snorkelling…
With the idea that you’re going to get wet anyway, why not go snorkelling? The sea temperatures in Tonga are warm all year round, making the ocean often feel warmer than getting rained on. Many waterfront accommodations in Tonga have good snorkelling – but we list the best ones in the 10 Best Resorts for Snorkelling in Tonga. If the water conditions are safe, there are also snorkelling boat tours available in the rain, such as the ones we list in the 10 Best Snorkelling Tours in Tonga.
Location: All over Tonga! See the links above for recommended locations.
11. … Or Some Scuba Diving…
The rain tends to bother you less when you’re deep in the ocean. As long as sea conditions are safe enough, scuba diving companies will still operate in the rain, which you’ll hardly notice as you explore Tonga’s amazing underwater world of coral gardens teeming with life. Check out The Guide to Scuba Diving in Tonga to start planning your dive.
Locations: Tongatapu, Ha’apai and Vava’u. Freediving is also available from ‘Eua.
12. … Or Even Swim with Whales
The rain doesn’t stop the whales from frolicking in Tonga’s waters, so why should it stop you?! Unless, well, if the sea conditions are too rough to enjoy swimming safely, then tours will not operate. But as long as it’s just rain pouring, then whale swimming tours will still go ahead so that you can enjoy this life-changing experience of swimming with gentle giants. Learn more about tours and the whale season in The Guide to Whale Swimming in Tonga.
Location: All over Tonga! See Where to Swim with Whales in Tonga for recommended locations.
13. Experience a Tongan Feast and Cultural Show
Food, fun and fantastic dancing can be experienced at the dinner shows across Tonga. Although most occur on an evening, except for a couple of resorts that do umu buffets on a Sunday, floor shows and umu feasts are not only a way to get out of the rain but an incredible insight into the Tongan culture through various styles of dancing and flavoursome food including a spitroast pig. Intrigued? Check out some of the best across The Kingdom in the 10 Best Cultural Shows in Tonga.
Location: All over Tonga! See the link above for recommended shows and their locations.
14. Play Some Games
If you’re one of the few who has found themselves at a resort on an uninhabited island in Tonga, chances are there’s really not that much to do under the rain! Luckily, some resorts have card and board games on hand to beat the rainy day blues. Better yet, bring your own travel-friendly games! We have a whole bunch of recommendations on our sister website, NZPocketGuide.com, so take a look!
15. Plan the Next Part of Your Trip on Tonga Pocket Guide
Well, if none of the above ideas are any good for you, then at least you can plan for the next few days of your time in Tonga with Tonga Pocket Guide! We literally have hundreds of articles to help you plan your trip, so find some WiFi using Where to Get WiFi in Tonga or get yourself some phone data using The Best SIM Card in Tonga For Travellers and plan the next part of your trip right here!
More Things to Do in Tonga on a Rainy Day
That’s it for our list of the best things to do in Tonga on a rainy day. For more tips about the weather, as well as more things to do, take a look at the following articles:
- What is the Weather Like in Tonga?
- 30 Tips for Travelling in Tonga
- 10 Best Things to Do in Tonga at Night