7. Encourage exploration at the beach.
Beaches are ripe for exploration, and kids are naturally curious. This means that beachcombing should be an activity that is high on the to-do list for any family! Of course, you should always accompany your young children as they look for rocks and shells along the shoreline. The rocks or shells can then be collected in a bucket and brought back home. One note: Some beaches request that certain items not be removed from the beach, such as grasses that have been planted along the shore to prevent erosion. Look for any warning signs indicating what not to touch or take.
8. Discourage bringing electronics to the beach.
Although it may seem perfectly reasonable for kids to bring their electronics to the beach, moms and dads may want to discourage this activity. Not only can the electronic items become clogged or bogged down with sand and water, but you’ll also lose the value of the beach because of lack of physical activity. The beach is all about enjoying nature, so leave the electronics at home or at the hotel. Moms and dads may want to do this as well to set an example.
9. Allow for down time after going to the beach.
Kiddos may become over-excited by a morning or afternoon at the beach, and the younger they are, the more they need some after-beach downtime. This helps avoid common issues such as meltdowns due to constant on-the-go action. However, quiet time doesn’t have to be totally inactive — it can include watching a television program, reading a book, having some healthy snacks, taking a shower or indulging in a nap. Your kids will have a chance to settle down a bit, and it gives parents a chance to catch their breath before heading on to another adventure like miniature golfing or going out to dinner.
10. Take tons of pictures.
While it seems obvious that families should take pictures of their kids when they all go to the beach, it’s easy for parents and relatives to lose track of time and forget. After all, it’s easy to get engrossed in dozens of activities when you’re playing at the beach! However, the pictures will be worth it in the end — you’ll be happy you stopped to snap some funny shots of the kids building a sand castle, flying the kite you built, jumping in the waves, chatting with new friends or trying to bury dad in the sand. Learn how to take the most instagrammable beach photos.
More than anything else, make sure the name of the game is fun! Have an incredible time at the beach with your family. Take the time to plan upfront, and go into your trip with realistic expectations of what your kids need. Then, sit back and enjoy!