16 No-Nonsense Tips For The Best Beach Trips

Collecting beach treasures for crafts and memories

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.

Our shadows watch while the children play on the beach
Our shadows watch while the children play

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!)

  1. 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!
  2. In a similar vein, take some towels, including one for the dog if you’re taking him!
  3. 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.

    Don't forget towels and protect seats from a wet and sandy dog or kids!
    Don’t forget the towels!
  4. Take some spare plastic bags to put the aforementioned wet clothing and towels or sandy shoes in.
  5. Wet wipes are an absolute essential (for most things, we find!), for sticky ice-cream covered hands and faces or sandy fingers and toes.
  6. 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!
  7. 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!
  8. 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.

    Buckets and spades for the beach
    Buckets and spades for the beach
  9. 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.

    Collecting beach treasures for crafts and memories
    Collecting beach treasures
  10. 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.
  11. 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?
  12. 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!)
  13. 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.

    Sunscreen and hats may be required!
    Sunscreen and hats may be required!
  14. 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.
  15. 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!

    Fish and chips, and maybe even a pint!
    Fish and chips, and maybe even a pint!
  16. 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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We are old hands at beach trips, so come and see all of the tips we've pulled together for you! Lots of no-nonsense advice for family days at the beach.
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15 Replies to “16 No-Nonsense Tips For The Best Beach Trips”

  1. It looks beautiful where you are – and I’m loving your pictures too – really nice! Wish the sun would come out down south!
    Lauretta @ Home and Horizon recently posted…5 Fab Family Games to Play When You’re Stuck IndoorsMy Profile

  2. My partner is never happy unless he spends a few days of the summer in the sea each year, which means a lot of beach time with our kids – usually without much sun. 🙂 We’re generally pretty organised, but it’s always good to have more ideas for things to bring/not to bring, so thanks. Hopefully, this year we’ll manage not to try and push a buggy across a sand dune and break the frame!

    1. Familymakes says: Reply

      Oh no, buggies are really tricky on the sand aren’t they?

  3. There’s nothing like a family day at the beach! Fantastic tips, I agree about the spare clothes, have made that mistake more than once! Xx
    Rosie @ Little Fish recently posted…11 Inspiring Reasons to Live Abroad (at Least Once in Your Life)My Profile

    1. Familymakes says: Reply

      Thanks Rosie – me too! You think they won’t go into the water, or they’ll just paddle a bit in their wellies, then before you know it they’ve fallen in!

  4. I just LOVE beach days! I will live by the beach one day. Great tips – the one thing I always forget is the plastic bag for the wet clothes! #thelistlinky
    Victoria – Lylia Rose recently posted…A Bottomless Brunch with BookatableMy Profile

    1. Familymakes says: Reply

      I always forget something – need to check my own list more often!

  5. Great tips, especially the baby powder, I’d not thought of that one before.
    Alana – Burnished Chaos recently posted…Happy Days: Eating Out and Treating OurselvesMy Profile

    1. Familymakes says: Reply

      Now I know it, I’ll be using it all the time too!

  6. These are some great tips! I hope we make it to the beach this summer. 🙂
    Lexie recently posted…9 Things That I’ve Learned in 9 Months of MotherhoodMy Profile

    1. Familymakes says: Reply

      Thanks Lexie,I hope you do too!

  7. These are great tips! We definitely need to bring a towel. The kids are just too messy and always covered with sands! We haven’t been to the beach this year yet. But hopefully, sometimes during the summer we will go.

    Thank you so much for linking up with us on #FabFridayPost
    Su {Ethan & Evelyn} recently posted…Tofu Scramble with Indigo Herbs Organic Turmeric PowderMy Profile

    1. Familymakes says: Reply

      Yes, hope you get to go to the beach over the summer. There’s something special about being by the sea!

  8. I agree with first aid items. My daughter managed to tread on a razor clam and ended up with her foot gushing with blood! Sarah #FabFridayPost
    Sarah Stockley recently posted…Joy Festival 2017My Profile

    1. Familymakes says: Reply

      Oh that sounds nasty! Hope she quickly recovered x

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