Welcome to the #BareFeetontheBeach series here on Bare Feet on the Dashboard. We’ve been taking family beach vacations for over 30 years (since I was a toddler) and are now taking the third generation on beach trips. I’ve compiled a list of 20 of the best beach activities for kids and families for your vacation or staycation this year (some are perfect to do at home). Read more below and don’t forget to pin this post to find it later.


20 Beach Activities for Kids and Families 

1) Get up early and head down to the beach to watch pods of dolphins swim up and down the shore eating their breakfast. We’ve even taken kayaks out to get close to them, but do so only at your own risk and be sure to wear a lifejacket.

2) Take a good flashlight and small hand fishing nets to go crab hunting and flounder fishing at night. So much fun!

3) Building sand castles is at the top of everyone’s beach activity list, but these Sand Dribble Sculptures from Still Playing School are fun for kids and adults and require little skill.

4) Beach walks are the best! Read our tips for Nature Walks with Kids and use them at the beach.

5) Stand at the water’s edge with your little one, holding their hands. As each wave comes help them jump it, splashing down with their feet as it recedes. We do this for hours.

6) Salt Water Animals Textured Watercolor Paintings from To the Moon and Back would be perfect for taking a break from the sun and having quiet creative time.

7) Collect shells throughout the day and wash them off and let them dry in the sun to take home as free souvenirs. I always keep a bucket or cup on hand for the treasures my kids find.

8) I love this idea from Local Fun for Kids for helping kids Turn Seashells in to a Keepsake Ornament. Perfect for keeping the beach with you all year long!

9) Here are 35 Free Things to Do at the Beach with Toddlers and Young Kids from

10) Bring a kiddie pool to the beach for your little ones to splash around in when the surf is rough. Read our post about kiddie pool games here.

11) Teaching your kids at home during the summer? Check out these At the Beach Alphabet Project Ideas from In the Playroom.

12) Here’s a great list of the Best Beach Themed Books for Kids from The Jenny Evolution.

13) This list is more beach themed books plus a great resource for FREE Beach and Camping Themed Printables for Kids from Storytime Standouts.

14) More beachy books & a FREE Printable Day at the Beach Diorama Kit for Preschoolers from Look! We’re Learning!

15) A Super Cute Flip Flop Footprints Craft from Fun Handprint Art

16) These Styrofoam Cup Sea Crabs from Crafts by Amanda would be super cute to make with kids.

17) Staying home this year? Here are some ideas for backyard beach fun from A Mom’s Take.

18) You can also make sand castles at home with this DIY Moon Sand from Kathy’s Cluttered Mind. She also has a cool Sand Unit Study for homeschool.

19) Let’s be real. This Edible Sand Play Dough from To the Moon and Back is really just an excuse for me to eat icing after the kids are done playing with it, right? I’m totally on board with that.

20) 3 Dinosaurs has a super cute FREE printable Beach Calendar and a whole pack of FREE Beach Printables for your preschool and early school kids.



Have some beachy fun with your family this summer. If you are looking for a great and easy to use swim suit with UV protection, we are obsessed with Swim Zip. Check them out before your vacation.

Don’t miss our other #BareFeetontheBeach posts:

A Fresh Seafood Meal Plan for Your Family Beach Vacation

Bring Home the Beach – 20 Beach Inspired Craft and Decorating Ideas

Our Best Beach Tips + Great Resources for Family Beach Vacations

Follow Becca’s board Beach Inspired Ideas on Pinterest.

6 Comments on 20 of the Best Beach Activities for Kids and Families #BareFeetontheBeach

  1. These are great tips for our next beach adventure…whenever that may be. I think we’ll try the Moon Sand while we’re at home, though!

  2. I’ve never taken my kiddos to the beach, but I know they would love it. When we finally do plan our trip, I’m going to have to check this out more closely! I also like that you included some wanna-be-at-the-beach things on this list, too. 😉

  3. I miss living within easy driving distance to the beach. I can’t wait to take the kids to the beach – I don’t think my daughter has ever been!

  4. Thank you very much for sharing our beach (and camping) theme printables. I appreciate the referrals. Here’s hoping we both get to enjoy some time at the beach very soon!

  5. Make sure to get a red lens cap to go over your flash light.To protect the sea turtles! Some tourist areas will even give them out for free. We recently learned that the white light from flash lights hinder the momma sea turtles from coming to shore to lay her eggs. The white light from flash lights confuses them. And they can not safely get ashore in time.

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