By Ann Shields
August 10, 2012

Walking umbrella-free in the rain may be romantic when the temperature is warm and you’re not headed to a job interview or fancy restaurant. But how should you respond if you’re caught in a shower and want to stay as dry as possible? Common sense may tell you to run, but how can you be absolutely sure?

The BBC (bless them) dumbs down an article from the European Journal of Physics about whether or not to run in a downpour. The physicist who conducted a recent study, Dr. Franco Bocci, concludes that running as fast as you can is best in most situations.

However, it gets complicated if you want to be exacting, as physicists often do.

You have to factor in your own height-to-width ratio to determine the perfect pace. And if the wind is at your back, you should try to pace yourself with its speed (quite an Olympic feat if the wind is blowing more that a few miles per hour).

Perhaps, best place to be walking if it happens to rain? Águeda, Portugal, pictured above, where a public art installation this summer provides coverage from the elements and some fantastic color.

Ann Shields is a senior digital editor at Travel + Leisure.