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My kids love visiting South Padre Island and have come up with several fun activities to do at the beach.
I’m sure if we suggested moving to the beach, they’d be packed and ready to go, in a jiffy!
I still remember the first time we took our then 1-year-old daughter to the beach.
She was thrilled to get her feet wet and three hours later, cried her lungs out because she had still not had enough.
I’m sure your kids are the same way.
And I know the beach is all about getting into the water but there is also a bunch of other fun stuff your kids can do.
Here are 15 Fun and Free Beach Activities for Kids.
1. Play chase the waves with younger kids.
My 3-year-old loves the water but has swallowed his fair share of salty water to know it isn’t always fun.
So we play “chase the waves” with him.
When the waves recede, he ventures forth boldly into the water but as soon as the waves pick up momentum and roll in, he shrieks with glee and runs onto the shore.
My 7-year-old has just as much fun with this game!
2. Go on a sea-shell hunt.
Bring the shells home and get the kids to paint them or do mosaic artwork using the shells collected.
3. Hunt for little crab holes.
The kids have so much fun watching the tiny crabs scurry in and out of the holes and try in vain to catch at least one!
4. Turtle Alert!
Most beaches are attached to a Turtle Rescue hotline.
Check your local beaches for the same.
During turtle release season or the nesting period, Turtle Rescue Workers urge the public to walk around beaches and see if they find any turtle eggs, a nest or hatchlings washed up.
This is what a turtle hatchling release looks like.
This can be a fun activity to do as a family.
Comb the shore for turtle nests, eggs, or baby turtles.
5. Build sandcastles!
6. Write messages in the sand.
And play a game to see whose message lasts the longest before the waves come and wipe them all away.
(Make sure this is done close to the water’s edge and not far away on shore. Else you will be there for a good long while!)
7. Take turns to bury each other in the sand.
(Now I’m not a huge fan of this activity but the kids LOVE it!)
8. Hunt for sand dollars.
Sand dollars are flattened sea urchins that wash up on shore.
They look like a round, impressed cookie!
My son loves doing this!
10. Fly a kite.
11. Sit in the shallow waters and watch the little fish wash in and out with the waves.
Ask the kids to call out the different colors they see.
12. Collect seaweed that has washed up on shore.
Get the kids to help you and bring it home to add to the soil.
Seaweed is rich in nutrients that help plants, flowers, veggies, and fruit thrive.
13. If you have an older child, encourage him/her to bring a journal to the beach.
Ask them to jot down unique, fun, and exciting things they find.
Take an exploratory walk along the shore.
You will be amazed with some of the things you will find!
14. Build moats or your own little pool for your child’s tiny rubber toys (boats, ducky et al) to float.
My kids love running to and from the shore with buckets filled with water, with a mission to fill their pools before the sand absorbs all the water!
15.Encourage your child to unleash his/her creative side on the sand.
Sand molds, rakes, spades, shells, and seaweed are great tools to help create that sand masterpiece!
What free beach activities do you do with your child?
Talking about the beach, what do you pack for snacks?
Perhaps make a quick breakfast to carry to eat on the drive there or just as you reach the beach?
These are easy to carry along in the car!
Check out this list of things to make your next beach trip a little easier:
- Sand-proof beach blanket
- All-terrain collapsible folding beach wagon
- Beach towel clips
- 4 person sun shade beach tent
- Beach mesh bag
- Portable cooler bag
Going to the beach with a baby?
Read these baby beach hacks!
- Use a talc-free powder to brush off all the sand on your baby’s body. Make sure to check all those creases.
- Use a mini inflatable pool, on the sand, to allow little ones to enjoy the beach safely, and keep the sand away from their eyes.
Do you have any baby beach hacks to share?