My first 7 years were spent in a little railway house in Seaford, a beach side suburb of Melbourne, Australia. We were beach-bunnies.. we’d head to the beach every single day and I don’t remember a scrap of sunscreen or even a hat. I had freckles and very brown skin…. and I guess I’m lucky so far that I haven’t seen any ill-effects from that. On the way home from the beach, we’d stop at the milk bar and get a lemonade Icy Pole and mum would hose our sticky fingers and sandy feet down in the front yard before we went inside.
It’s one of the traditions I’ve carried over into my own family… even though we live 40 minutes from the beach you will find us most sunny weekend mornings at Edithvale which is just glorious. Tiny little waves and a cafe right on the beach which serves a massive egg/bacon/tomato/cheese toastie on turkish bread. (and lemonade Icy Poles!).
Here are our Top 5 things to do at the beach. Please add your Top 5 in the comments?
- Create a car in the sand – dig out a pit to sit in, then create a dashboard out of shells and a steering wheel out of a Frisbee or paper plate. Use a straw for an arial.
- Collect shells and interesting pieces of wood in a bucket and go for a long walk with the kids, leaving the shells and wood as you go. Even mark regular spots with a big circle with an X inside. The kids absolutely love to collect these markers on the way back.
- Bury Dad in the sand. First dig a long pit and encourage him to lie in it.. then pile sand on top of him and decorate his ‘cocoon’ with shells. Huge fun when Dad decides to get up, like a giant disrupting the earth.
- Boogie Boarding. The kids get a bigger blast out of Dad dragging them at top speed along the shore than they do out of surfing or floating on their boogie boards in the water. Recently we got a surf disc from K-Mart for $25 which is designed for that exact purpose… skimming along the shore. It has handles for the kids to hang on to and a big rope for Dad to pull.
- My grandfather (who just turned 92!) used to have the kids in awe by creating strange little sand sculptures called Drizzle Castles by picking up a handful of very wet sand and letting it slowly fall/drip out of his hand.
Bonus tip :: Always take a big 2ltr bottle of water plus an empty one. In addition to drinking the water, you’ll use it to rinse kids hands off before eating. Then you can use the empty one for filling up with sea water and tipping into castle moats and other constructions you’ll create!