Beach Games and Activities for Kids

Are you heading to the beach? Lucky you! If you run out of things to keep the kids entertained, here’s a few beach games and things to do.

Picture this: the sun is shining, and you can hear the waves lapping against the shore. Relax.

“Mum, I’m bored!” Yep, no rest for the parent!!

So here are some beach games and activities for kids to have up your sleeve.

Bodyboarding

Surfer Dude!

Kids can burn up a lot of energy playing in the water, and body-boarding is excellent fun.

You ideally want somewhere with some waves (not too big for kids). There are some great surfing beaches in Cornwall that have lifeguards, but you will need to supervise them as the currents are strong.

However, kit them out with a child-sized board, and you don’t need big waves for them to enjoy being a surfer dude. The good thing about body boarding is that kids can still have fun on small and gentle waves.

They are also better to play on in the water than inflatables, as it is possible for someone on an inflatable to get blown away from the shore, but this is less likely to happen with a bodyboard.

Tip: If you are in the UK, get some wetsuits. Kids will be able to play in the water a lot longer before the “Mum, I’m cold” starts. Kids wetsuits aren’t that expensive these days.


Waboba Ball

A waboba what?

The Waboba is a ball that ‘bounces’ off the water.

Ideal for playing catch in the sea or the swimming pool. Bounce it off the water when you throw it to someone else.

Snorkelling

If you are heading off to a beach with clear water, get some child-sized snorkelling gear.

Their age and swimming abilities will determine how much real snorkelling they will do, but even splashing around at the shore line can be fun.

Kids are fascinated by looking under water, so get a properly fitting mask (btw, we have found these mask-style goggles fantastic).

Play some diving games, which can be as simple as getting them to retrieve a shell from the sea floor. It doesn’t have to be deep water – even within easy reach – but it gets them used to the mask and looking under water.

If your child is older, try them with flippers. Don’t expect them to find flippers easy though, but it’s good entertainment!

Beware of some of the ‘cheap’ snorkel sets you can buy at the beach. Usually, the masks don’t fit well, and flippers can rub.

If getting a mask, it is often better to buy one at home from a manufacturer that makes children’s swimming gear and make sure it fits before going to the beach. (We’ve found Zoggs excellent).

Build a Sand Sculpture

Mermaid Beach Sculpture

Anyone can build a sand castle – but what about a shark, crocodile, or turtle (or even a mermaid)?

These are all easy shapes to build with your child, especially if you are sitting closer to the water line as you need damp sand.

Just pile up the sand and get the rough shape with your hands. Then smooth it and use a stick for details.

Get your kids to decorate it by getting stones for the eyes, shells for teeth (shark & crocodile), shells for scales (crocodile), or the shell (turtle).

Build a Windbreak

It’s usually windy on the beach. Well, if you have someone who would rather dig than build a sculpture, get them to create a windbreak by making a sand wall on the windy side of where you are sitting.

Building a wall can keep energetic kids busy for a while, but be ready for sand to come flying your way now and then!

Once built, it can help with keeping the wind out, if you lie down low that is.

Kite Flying

Cool Kite Flying

If you are on a big beach with plenty of space, use that wind for some kite flying.

There are all sorts of kites available these days, from simple ones that toddlers can fly, to larger ones that can do aerobatics.

Beach Combing

OK, so this is a more traditional sort of activity, but turn it into a scavenger hunt.

Give them a bucket (or bag), and ask them to go and find some specific items. You could even give them a prize for completing the challenge.

Here are some suggestions. Adjust, combine, and add your own depending on ages and what’s on your beach.

  • Find four different colours of sea glass
  • Find four different shaped shells
  • Find five different things beginning with the letter ‘S‘ (answers could be: sand, sea, seaweed, stone, shell)

Art

When you have finished with the beachcombing scavenger hunt, get them to arrange their finds and make a collage.

More Beach Games and Activities…

Here’s just a few more ideas…

  • Stone Towers – try piling up stones on top of one another. The one who can make the highest tower wins. (This isn’t as easy as it sounds!).
  • Beach Noughts and Crosses – create a grid in the sand and use stones as noughts and shells as crosses.
  • Hopscotch – As easy as it sounds. Just mark it out in the sand.
  • More energetic: what about long jump? There’s plenty of sand.

 

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Mum to three kids and loves getting out and about with them. Co-founded Get Out With The Kids to help other parents enjoy getting out and about with their kids. You can often find Shell on Twitter @GetOutKids.

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