Beautiful Rainy Places for Your Autumn Photos

areas of the UK with the most rainfall

Grey clouds and pouring rain don’t usually inspire days out exploring, in fact, it’s usually the opposite. But there’s also something undeniably beautiful about the rain. It can easily turn an afternoon walk into an atmospheric trek in the wilderness, or a muddy puddle arena if you’re with the kids. 

As we are heading into the wettest time of the year in the UK, there’s perhaps no better time to plan some trips to the rainiest spots. In this article we will look at some of the areas of the UK with the most rainfall, and how you can turn a rainy day to your advantage by exploring the sights and taking some amazing pictures.

Western Scotland and the Highlandsup to 4000 mm a year

The large amounts of rainfall in Western Scotland, particularly the highlands, are down to a combination of high altitudes and being on the western side of the UK. Since the prevailing wind comes in from the Atlantic, the western side of the UK is usually the first to be graced with buckets of rain. All the locations in this article have that in common. 

Claiming the top spot in this region is Argyllshire, which gets about 2274.9 mm a year, closely followed by Dunbartonshire with an average of 2066.5 mm of rainfall. 

Trying to narrow down what area of Western Scotland to visit on your drizzly day trip is like trying to pick a dessert from a menu – they all sound spectacular, and it’s impossible to choose a favourite. But here are some recommendations on where to have fun and take some amazing photos in the rain. 

Fort William is a small town nestled at the foothills of Ben Nevis, the tallest peak in the UK.  Just to the northwest is one of the wettest areas of Scotland, getting around 4000 mm of rain a year. Venture out of the town to explore the nearby Loch Linnhe, rugged moorland, wild forests, or the ruins of Inverlochy Castle – it may be brisk in the rain but well worth it for the views and glimpses of sunshine over the snow-covered peaks. Be sure to warm up with some famous Scottish whisky afterwards!

When you’ve had your fill of remote wilderness, travel further south to Glasgow, which was named the second rainiest city in the UK in 2021. This port city on the banks of the river Clyde receives on average 94 mm of rain each month. Amidst the grand Victorian architecture and sleek modern structures, Glasgow is an amazing place for those moody night-time photos. Capture city lights glinting off puddles, or raindrops on clear umbrellas for some unforgettable additions to your album.

Snowdonia3000+ mm a year

Some of the wettest regions in the UK are mountainous areas. This is because moist air coming in from the sea is forced upwards due to the terrain, which cools the air and helps form clouds and rain. 

While we don’t advise heading to the summit of Mount Snowdon in the wind and rain, there are plenty of nearby sights just waiting to be added to your photo album. Dramatic clouds over slate-covered hills, glistening lakes, and lush green landscapes are just some of what makes this area of North Wales a must-see.

It’s also home to one of the wettest places in the UK, according to the MET Office, which is Capel Curig, a small village in the heart of Snowdonia that annually receives about 2697.13mm of rainfall. While there are a couple of places to grab a bite to eat and hotels to stay at for a rest, exit Capel Curig along the A4086 and you’ll be treated to stunning views along the Llanberis Pass. You’ll find many viewing points along this road, which winds its way through the jaw-dropping scenery of the Snowdon and Glyder massifs.

Alternatively, if you want to embrace getting wet and create some memories in the rain, try having a go at paddleboarding or kayaking instead! Conveniently, Capel Curig is also home to the Plas-y-Brenin Outdoor Activity Centre, where you can book your next rainy-day adventure.

The Lake District – around 3200 mm per year

You might have guessed this one, considering how famous this area already is for rain. Being both on the western side of the UK and with areas of high elevation makes for another hotspot for wet weather. In fact, in a year the Lake District can expect to have an average of 200 days of rain. 

If you want to chase the rain, then Seathwaite might be the place for you. This small hamlet south of Keswick is the wettest inhabited place in England and gets around 3552 mm of rain each year. Seathwaite is a great place to begin if you want to explore Scarfell Pike or Great Gable, and in the summer the roads can become very busy with hikers. So waiting for wetter days to visit might result in fewer crowds and quieter roads too.

For more easy-going ventures, the lakes themselves can offer many well-worn trails for you to tread along and take photos of the moody weather over the water. 

The many lush forests, meanwhile, are beautiful whatever the weather but can offer you a little more shelter from the rain. Make the most of this time of year by photographing the ancient forests while they’re blanketed with red and golden leaves. Or take enchanting pictures of the many mushrooms and fungi that thrive after rainy weather.

Grizedale Forest, situated in between Coniston and Windermere, has everything you need for your trip. Apart from the views, the forest features a sculpture trail with unique artwork which is intermingled with the trees and waterfalls. For the whole family, you can also test your bravery with Go Ape, whizz over the hills on the cycling and mountain bike trails, or sit back while the kids spend their energy on the adventure play area. 

In all, it’s pretty clear to see that cloudy or rainy days shouldn’t be written off. Travelling outside of the summer season will reward you with not only fewer visitors to contend with, but also some tranquil scenery. So embrace the rain, rediscover your spirit for adventure, and enjoy the autumnal weather.

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