For a free, fun-filled and healthy day out, you can’t beat the beach. Whether it’s a couple of hours or a couple of days, beach fun is great for all the family. We love to head to the beach whenever possible, and we’re lucky enough to have lived very close to some lovely beaches in our time, particularly along the North East and Scottish coastlines. So no prizes for guessing where we’ll be heading this Bank Holiday!
They don’t call it ‘Vitamin Sea’ for nothing! The fresh air and feel-good factor that being by the sea bring are something quite magical. Young and old alike benefit from seaside activities, but we love it especially for family time. Cal doesn’t manage to walk very far these days, but even sitting at the edge of the beach and watching the boys (and the dog) play and enjoy themselves is a big treat for us. The boys love to let off steam, and always return refreshed and a little tired from a day at the beach. They also love the treat of grabbing an ice cream or eating fish and chips at the end of the trip.
Here are a few tips from some seasoned beach lovers, to help you make the most of your family time at the beach (we don’t always follow our own advice, as we’re often impromptu beach visitors, but that gives us more experience to add to our list!)
- Pack some spare clothes – whether you plan to go swimming in the sea or not, you can almost guarantee someone will get wet from paddling, falling in a rock pool, or something!
- In a similar vein, take some towels, including one for the dog if you’re taking him!
- Remember something to cover the car seat or boot where the very wet and sandy dog will be sitting afterwards. You may want to even consider this for the kids.
- Take some spare plastic bags to put the aforementioned wet clothing and towels or sandy shoes in.
- Wet wipes are an absolute essential (for most things, we find!), for sticky ice-cream covered hands and faces or sandy fingers and toes.
- Another top tip I picked up recently was that baby powder is great for getting sand off wet feet. It will probably help your shoes go back on more easily too!
- Take something to sit on – folding chairs, picnic blankets or beach towels will all save you getting too much sand in your pants when you sit down! Real pros might even go for a wind break or beach tent/shelter. We’ve never been that good!
- Remember the bucket and spade, and a few other plastic toys. Hours of fun will be had building sand castles, digging moats or burying Dad! Buckets are also good for bringing water from the sea into the moat, and for collecting shells, pebbles and other treasures.
- Make sure to collect plenty of those treasures – sea glass, shells, driftwood, seaweed etc all make for great craft activities afterwards. They are also lovely mementos of your special day together. This year we are making resin jewellery so will be on the look out for tiny treasures to create our masterpieces with.
- Bring plenty of drinks – running around on the beach is thirsty work! Don’t forget fresh water for the dog too. You could even go the whole hog and pack a picnic, if you can resist the lure of the fish and chip shop.
- Bring some other toys for when the bucket and spade entertainment ends. You might want to include a frisbee, ball or kite for example. Maybe some tennis racquets or cricket bats?
- Cal is a bit of a walking risk assessment, and always brings some first aid items. We usually have plasters, antiseptic wipes and cream at the least. It’s not unheard of to step on some glass or cut yourself on something whilst digging in the sand, or trip and graze a knee, (and if there’s an injury to be had, our kids are usually the first to partake!)
- Don’t forget the sunscreen! Even in the UK, the sun can be deceptively powerful and you don’t always notice it when there’s a sea breeze. A hat might also be a good idea, especially if you’re a baldy head like me! Sun shades for babies and toddlers are also good for the beach.
- Being typical British weather, remember some raincoats or warmer clothing too. The weather can change very quickly, especially at the coast when the tide turns.
- Bring a sense of humour! Seaside activities can be sticky, messy, gritty, wet, and cold. Smile through it, because your kids are having a great time and tiring themselves out. Plus the chip shop will be warm and dry. There might even be a pub!
- Don’t forget your camera to capture all of those precious moments and special memories you are making. Share them with us too, we’d love to see what fun you’ve had by the sea!
Are you heading to the beach soon? Do you have any tips to add to our list? Please let us know, we love to hear from you!
You can find more ideas about fun and inexpensive things to do here
Disclaimer: This is a collaborative post
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