10 Beach Hacks Every Parent Should Know
Summer is coming, and there's nothing better than enjoying a relaxing day by the water with the kids! Your next day at the beach will be a breeze with our favorite beach hacks for parents.
Carry a Mesh Bag for Beach Toys
Build the epic sandcastle your children have been dreaming of without carrying most of it home in your toys and shoes with this fantastic parenting beach hack. Load up a mesh laundry bag with your favorite sand toys for easy travel to the beach, then refill it when you’re done playing. Give it a few shakes on your walk back from the beach and watch the sand grains slip away through the open weave.
Bring Along a Kiddie Pool
A big ocean or large lake can seem overwhelming for babies and toddlers, so bring the water to them with a small inflatable baby pool that you can set up on the beach close to your blanket or beach tent. Whether it’s filled with a small amount of water or some sand, your baby will stay happily entertained in this soft, kid-friendly space.
Choose the Best Beach Towel for the Job
Like waves on the ocean, beach towels come in all shapes and sizes to suit different needs. If you’re planning a casual walk along the shore, a traditional rectangular beach towel works great for drying off or relaxing. Longer, lazy days may call for a family-sized round beach towel so the whole family has a place to relax. On chillier mornings, opt for a hooded towel for each child to keep little swimmers comfortable.
Create a Cozy Space for Relaxing
Create a cozy place for babies and toddlers to relax with this easy beach hack. Pack a fitted sheet in your beach bag, and then lay it on the beach with coolers or heavy bags at each corner. Wrap each corner of the sheet over the item to create a soft, box-like shape that makes an inviting fort during nap time.
Pack a Pop-Up Tent
Easier to transport and carry than a large umbrella, a pop-up tent is the perfect item for long days at the beach. Make your own shade and create a cozy space for reading or napping with a portable tent that sets up in a snap. Kids will love the feel of camping on the shore, and you'll enjoy the ease of setup and respite from the afternoon sun.
Set a Sunscreen Timer
Time flies when you’re having fun, and it can be easy to forget when you’ve last applied sunscreen. To prevent sunburns, set a timer on your phone or bring along a waterproof stopwatch to help keep track of time. Set your timer to the interval recommended on your favorite sunscreen for reapplication, and don’t forget to allow an extra few minutes for skin to dry before returning to the water.
Keep a Large Tote Sand-Free
Warm sand between your toes is a special treat, but sand in your sandwich? Not so much. Designate a large tote bag to keep to the side for yourself and other parents joining you. It can hold medications, snacks, drinks, diapering supplies and a few sand-free washcloths. Choosing a tote that also has an insulated pouch can help keep drinks or medications cool on warm summer days.
Carry a Mister
Temperatures on a beach can easily fluctuate from warm to cool, so in addition to keeping hooded towels in tow, pack a small toiletry misting bottle. When filled with clean water, its gentle spray will quickly cool warm arms and legs. Don’t forget to pack a hat for extra protection from the sun’s warm rays.
Bring Along the Fun
Pack a few supplies for creating easy family games on the beach. A few tennis balls and small holes in the sand can combine for a competitive game of beach bowling, while burying a couple small treasures make for a fun hunting adventure. Or, trace a hopscotch or tic-tac-toe board on the sand and use shells to mark your places.
Baby Powder Makes for Easy Cleanup
Kids' toes often collect the most sand on the trek back from beach to car, but this parenting beach hack will leave them sand-free and smelling fresh. Keep a bottle of baby powder in your beach tote or car to dust over any wet sand that’s stuck to your children’s legs or feet. The sand will brush right off and keep the beach where it belongs.