Who doesn't love the beach? Beaches are nature's naturally relaxing environments. With the warm sun shining on you, the sound of the waves and the tides going in and out, the smell of the fresh sea breeze, what else could you ask for?
Not much in terms of environment, but the beach doesn't automatically provide everything the modern human needs for a great day. Here are some things aside from swimsuits that you should bring with you to the beach this summer.
We can't say this enough. The one thing that can mess up a beautiful beach day memory is a next-day sunburn. The sun is a wonderful, life-giving entity, but we need to be prepared if we plan to be out in it all day. Pack enough sunscreen for every member, and then make sure you use it. If full-body reapplications get to be overwhelming, pull on a rash guard to keep your skin safe. Taking along sunglasses to protect your eyes from the light reflecting off the water is a good idea, as are hats. Just remember, it is windy at the beach. Make sure your hat fits well or can be tightened so you can leave with the hat you brought.
There are things you can bring to do leisure right. You do need beach towels, both to dry yourself off and create a space for your beach set-up. Without towels, everything just gets sandy (surprise, surprise) which is less fun when that grittiness gets into your food or hair. Towels make it easy to recline on the shore and enjoy the warmth of the sunlight. If you want to be able to sit and watch the waves or your friends and family playing on the beach, a beach chair is a necessity. Built to be both comfortable and easily packable, beach chairs also let you engage in some nice conversation with the different members of your group—just set the chairs up in a circle! When the sun gets to be too much, umbrellas or other shade-providing structures help immensely. Sometimes a break in the cool shade is just what you need to recharge and get back out there. Ironically, resting can actually help you play for longer.
There isn't much you can eat right out of the water. And we only get a mouthful of seawater when we accidentally get tumbled by a wave. Since the beach is not physically nourishing, you have to be prepared. Pack water and drinks to keep you and yours hydrated. Between the saltwater and the hot sun, you will definitely need to replenish your liquids. Bring along food that can last in warm beach weather, or make sure your cooler really works. Choosing food that carries a lot of water is also a good idea for further hydration. Fruits like juicy watermelon and sweet pears are excellent models of smart beach foods. The best part is, if you get yourself a little messy eating and drinking, clean-up is just a swim away!
What are "Beach Tools?" Anything that helps you engage with the beach environment—for example, tools to build sandcastles. While building a sandcastle is possible with just your hands, bringing along buckets, shovels, and beach bags for seashells will make it that much easier to create your Sandy Camelot. Buckets are needed for material transportation and shaping. Use the shovels for digging the moat to protect your castle from the tides and for detailing the walls. Bags for seashells allow you to gather what you need to artistically express yourself in your architectural design, and they give you a place to store the few you choose to bring home as souvenirs. When you find the right balance of sand to water and nothing can stand in the way of your construction.
If you are planning on swimming in the ocean, you also want to have a few beach tools along to help enhance that experience. Goggles, flippers or fins, and snorkels are some of the things that take sea swimming to the next level. Goggles help you see clearly what is right in front of you, and fins get you to what you want to see up close. Snorkels take a little bit of getting used to, but once you master this tool, you can stay immersed (literally) in the ocean experience all day. What a way to enjoy the beach!
Other beach tools include (but are not limited to) boogie boards, surfboards, and fishing gear.
Beaches are fun. Modern conveniences are also fun. When you put them together, you get the most fun beach adventure possible and a wonderful memory.