10 ways to have an amazing time at Wimbledon without watching any tennis


So you bought Wimbledon tickets in some sort of mad impulse hoping to see Andy Murray in action at SW19.

But as luck would have it, you're down to watch players you've never really heard of, you've remembered you don't actually like tennis all that much and the rain means nothing much is happening on court anyway.

But you don't have to spend nine hours glued to your soggy seat at Wimbledon - here are a few things you can do to turn your day out into a fun-filled event.

1. Have your afternoon tea like a VIP

Feeling the need to enjoy an afternoon cuppa in style?

Head over to Wingfield Restaurant, Conservatory Kitchen or Cafe Pergola for a luxury-filled afternoon tea experience. Who needs tennis when you can wash down scones with a pot of your favourite tea infusion?

2. Head over to the museum

Why not check out the Wimbledon Lawn Tennis Museum and soak up some local tennis culture, history and fashion?

From Victorian tennis aprons to crisp Wimbledon whites, the museum offers a chance to get acquainted with tennis fashion throughout the ages - while also sheltering from any unseasonable precipitation.

And oh, it also houses the original white dress worn by the famous 1970s Tennis Girl Fiona Butler which stands next to a copy of that poster.

3. Find yourself a cushy picnic spot

If you've got ground passes but can't be bothered to stare at the big screen (unless, of course, Andy Murray's playing), then bring in a food hamper (or you could get one when you are at Wimbledon here) and relax on the grass with your favourite summer read.

The cheers (and boos) from the crowd will keep you updated whenever there's a set point, so you are not totally out of the loop. Just remember to take an umbrella...

4. Take selfies with famous people

If you hang around at the Aorangi Park practice courts, you are likely to come across the players warming up - assuming the weather holds.

You might also bump into the likes of Novak Djokovic and Roger Federer hitting on the outside courts mid-morning, so it's definitely worth keeping your eyes peeled while wandering around the grounds.

And you could even snatch a rare selfie - along with an autograph - if you hang out near Autograph Island (which is next to Aorangi Park) long enough.

5. Play spot the celeb

If you are lucky enough to score Centre Court tickets, be sure to stay observant.

You might spot Hollywood stars or members of the extended royal family casually sitting in the Royal Box.

6. Give yourself a photography masterclass

Lush green grass, pretty flowers, well-dressed fans and sportspeople in action make Wimbledon the perfect place to practise your photography skills.

7. Drink pink champagne

Pink champagne is great for enjoying in the sunshine, but it can also taste just as good when the rain's falling. A few glasses in, you won't care what the weather's doing. Add strawberries and cream and that's your mid-afternoon sorted.

8. Go shopping

From tennis bags and colourful towels to cute strawberry mugs and authentic sweatbands, the Wimbledon souvenir shop stocks some pretty cool stuff. Feel free to fill your bags with tennis merch for your friends and family (and maybe your stuffed toy monkey). You may also want to invest in one of those enormous Wimbledon umbrellas.

If you want to stay on trend, the Wimbledon towel has become a talking point at this year's Championship, with each player being asked for their thoughts on the item by a particular member of the media. There are two towels available, one for the men and one for the women, and the fans can get a piece of the action too, as they are available in the Wimbledon store for £29.

9. Look for Rufus the Hawk

Rufus has a very special role at Wimbledon and has become something of a celebrity as a result.

If you happen to bump into the famous bird, make sure you don't get in the way of his flight patrols to keep pigeons firmly away from the Wimbledon grounds.

10. Queue to buy a second-hand tennis ball

Fans queue to buy used Slazenger balls on day Three of Wimbledon
(Adam Davy/PA)

Wimbledon balls are used for no longer than nine games but rather than be thrown away, they are resold the next day. Fans can queue outside Centre Court at the 'Used Balls Kiosk' and pay £3 for tin of three that could have been used by anyone from Andy Murray to Serena Williams.

The money raised from the sale of the balls is donated by Wimbledon to The School's Tennis Programme, with last year's offering £15,000.