Imagine the sound of the waves, the feeling of the sand on your feet, the quaint sight of the beach in front of you. It’s calling out your name — or was it just your toddler whining because the salty seawater got into his eyes again.
I know, I know. Going on a beach is never a bad idea unless you’re a mom of a toddler. Aside from the screaming and tantrums, we also worry about their safety and protection so instead of getting the relaxation we need, we end up worrying about a lot of things.
However, a beach day with your kids doesn’t have to be terrifying. In fact, it can be a getaway you want to cherish and repeat over and over again. Below are some of the best tips I’ve personally used when taking the entire family on a beach day.
Tip #1: Pack As Early As You Can
Maybe beach day is still a couple of weeks away but it’s never too early to start getting your things ready. This will give you enough time to re-check your stuff, take out what’s not necessary, and add the essentials you almost forgot.
If you’re busy, you can do it the night before your trip right after you put the little ones to bed. This will save you an extra hour in the morning before your kids (including your husband) get up.
Tip#2: Do NOT Forget The Sunscreen
Before you go to the beach, slather a generous amount of sunscreen on your and your children’s skin at home. Don’t worry if you think you’ve put too much as there will be enough time for your skin to fully absorb it while you are on your way to the beach.
Pro Tip: Add extra protection by choosing a stylish swimwear that covers as much skin as possible and with UPF30+.
Tip #3: Build A Fortress
You may be after the sun but too much of it is harmful to the skin. Therefore, be sure to put up a large umbrella that can cover up the entire family or better yet, set up a tent where your family can comfortably stay and eat.
Tip #4: Pack Water Bottles In An Ice-Filled Container
Once you’re on the beach, do not take out all your water bottles instead, leave the few ones inside an ice-filled container. This is a simple trick when you want to refresh yourself at the end of the day and save a few extra bucks from buying bottled water.
Tip #5: Bring An Extra Umbrella
No matter how cute the hats are, most kids will ditch it. So, instead of bribing and forcing the little one to wear, I just bring an extra huge umbrella and hold it while the little one makes a sandcastle or dig the sand using his toy trucks.
Tip #6: Use Packing Cubes For Storage
Whether it’s for your camera or extra beach clothes, you can use a packing cube to store it. Rather than the regular mesh bag that’s prone to getting wet, you can opt for plastic storage so you can protect your things from water splash and sand.
Tip #7: Carry A Carrier
Even if you’re done using a baby carrier on other places, this tool is extremely helpful when you want to carry an early walker at the shore. This frees up your hands to do other things, such as feel the sand or play with water.
Tip #8: Bring A Travel Potty
If you’re still on the potty training phase, bring a travel potty and a few swim diapers for your little one. This lets the two of you enjoy beach day without worrying about pee and poo.
Tip #9: Pack A Foldable Bag
I don’t know what sorcery is happening but I just noticed that the number of things we bring to the beach doubles as the day ends. My trick here is to bring a foldable bag that I can easily open when needed.
Tip #10: Sand-Proof Your Snacks
If your little ones are hungry, they’re really hungry and there’s no way to stop their sandy hands from grabbing the food. So, to protect your sandwiches and other snacks, you can pack them individually using reusable snack bags rather than storing them in one large container.
You can also cut sandwiches into bite-size pieces so in case one gets sandy, you don’t have to worry about the entire sandwich getting ruined. You can also choose fruits that let you wash off the sand easily, such as blueberries and grapes.
Pro Tip: Despite the sand-proofing hacks, most food will get sandy or wet so to keep your child from being hangry, bring a lot of snacks.
Tip #11: Keep The Entire Family Hydrated
Tip #12: Devise A Powerful Bribe
Do not underestimate the power of ice cream shops when you want your kids to re-apply sunscreen or wear hats. You can also devise another plan when you want them to do or NOT do something, such as rewarding a sweet treat.
Tip #13: Set Up A Kiddie Pool
Let your infant and toddlers join the fun by setting up a kiddie pool near your large umbrella or beach tent. Also, be sure to bring a manual or electric pump to blow the pool and a bucket to fill it with water.
These are just some of the handy tips I’ve personally used to have a better beach day with my child. Although it’s never perfect, it’s 10 times better than leaving home without a plan.
Which hacks do you like the most? Do you have more techniques on how to make beach day easier? How was your first beach day with the kids like? I’d love to hear your thoughts so feel free to join our growing community or simply share your stories below.