Beach vacations are a time-honored tradition for families all over the world. Nothing quite says “summer” like spending a week or two lounging by the ocean, soaking up the sun, and playing in the sand. However, beach vacations can also be a source of stress for parents who have to juggle the needs of their children with their own desire to relax.
The good news is that some simple tips and hacks can help make beach vacations more enjoyable for everyone involved. From packing the perfect beach bag to keeping kids entertained while you’re on the go, these six tips & hacks will help you make the most of your next family beach vacation.
1. Pack a beach bag with everything you need—and nothing you don’t.
Beach vacations usually involve a lot of walking, so it’s important to pack light. That means bringing only the essentials: sunscreen, hats, sunglasses, snacks, water, flotation devices (if your children are young), and any medications you or your family members might need. Packaging a small first-aid kit in case of any minor scrapes or cuts is also a good idea.
You should also pack a few plastic bags to store wet clothes, swimsuits, and a beach blanket or two. And don’t forget the toys! A few small shovels, buckets, and beach balls will go a long way in keeping your kids entertained.
2. Rent a boat for a day—or even half a day.
One of the best ways to enjoy a family beach vacation is to rent a boat. This will allow you to explore the coastline and relax on the water. It’s also a great way to get some exercise. If you’re not comfortable driving a boat yourself, plenty of businesses usually offer boat rental services.
You can also consider renting a jet ski, which can be a lot of fun for the whole family. Just be sure to follow all safety guidelines and never operate a jet ski without a life jacket.
3. Keep kids entertained with easy games and activities.
One of the challenges of beach vacations is keeping children entertained while on the go. Rather than lugging around a bunch of toys from home, try packing some easy-to-transport games and activities that will keep kids amused for hours. Sidewalk chalk is always a hit, as are small balls or Frisbees that can be used on the beach or in the hotel pool.
If you’re traveling with younger children, consider packing some items from homes that they’re familiar with—such as a favorite stuffed animal or blanket—to help them feel more comfortable in unfamiliar surroundings.
4. Make sure everyone stays hydrated.
Dehydration is a danger when spending time in the sun, so it’s important to ensure everyone in your family drinks plenty of water throughout the day. Pack enough water bottles for everyone in your family, and make sure to drink regularly, even if you’re not thirsty.
If you’re tired or lightheaded, those could be signs of dehydration, so take a break from activities and grab something to drink immediately. Also, keep an eye out for signs of dehydration in your children, such as thirst, crankiness, or dry mouth.
5. Plan ahead for meals and snacks.
One way to save money on vacation is to plan ahead for meals and snacks by packing them yourself from home. This is especially helpful if you have picky eaters in your family or are trying to stick to a specific diet while on vacation. Of course, it’s also important to leave room for some indulgences—after all, part of the fun of vacation is being able to enjoy some new foods!
When planning ahead for meals, try to find recipes that can be easily prepared in advance and don’t require too many ingredients or utensils; this will make mealtime much less stressful while you’re on vacation.
5. Find free or cheap things to do in your destination city.
Even if your budget is tight, there are plenty of ways to enjoy yourself on vacation without breaking the bank. Do some research before you leave home to find free or cheap things to do in your destination city—you may be surprised at what’s available!
Many cities have free museums, art galleries, parks, and other outdoor attractions that can be enjoyed at no cost. You can also look for Groupon deals or take advantage of tourist discounts available at local businesses; just ask about discount programs when you arrive at your destination.
By following these simple tips & hacks, you can ensure that your next family beach vacation is one that everyone will enjoy! These tips will help you make the most of your time together as a family—and create memories that will last long after summer has ended!