Fun games to play at the beach

Have a go at these fun beach games for young kids! Games you can enjoy on the sand this summer once they’ve had enough time swimming in the sea.
Have a go at these fun beach games for young kids!

Games you can enjoy on the sand this summer once they’ve had enough time swimming in the sea.

14 Games to play at the beach

1. Beach Treasure Hunt

Supply each child with a list (can be a written list or a list with pictures) and a bucket in which they can collect their treasures.

Have your kids hunt for driftwood, shells, rocks, crabs, something round, something blue, a feather, etc.

The list can be as long or as short as you feel your child will be able to handle.

2. Bury their feet

Don't just bury your kids feet, tell a story as you go to make it more fun.

When you’re all done, get them to count to three and jump up out of the sand as high as they can!

Pretend to be shocked to see their feet, and set to work again.

If your little one is sensitive, first stick to simply covering their feet lightly and getting them to jump out again until they understand the process. Otherwise they might be genuinely alarmed that their feet have gone forever!

3. Dig for treasure

In soft, dry sand, bury a few beach toys, and let your toddler dig to find them.

Perhaps bury some of your things that you don’t mind getting sandy, pretend you’ve lost them, and let your little one save the day.

4. Follow the stick trail

Find a stick and, in damp, flat sand below the high-tide mark, draw a line for your child to follow.

You’ll need to make it as wibbly and wobbly as possible.

Once they've got the idea, let them take over, and you follow their trail.

5. Go beach-bowling

Dig five or six holes in flat, hard sand and try throwing or rolling balls into them.

6. Go exploring

It’s great to have lots of ideas up your sleeve to encourage your kids to explore, but give them a chance to instigate play too.

If you follow their lead, show interest in what they're doing and copy them, they’ll feel confident to investigate some more.

7. Make a mermaid

Get your little one to sit down and shape a mermaid’s tail from sand over and around their legs.

You can then decorate the tail with shells, pebbles and seaweed.

8. Play musical towels

Lots of kids will have played musical chairs at parties, but for this version, lay out as many towels as there are people playing, and sing while everyone runs from towel to towel.

When you stop singing, everyone has to lie down on a towel.

The first person to do this wins.

No one’s out, and keep playing until your toddler stays lying on their towel exhausted!

9. Play shadow tag

Challenge your little one to catch your shadow.

Run around until they manage to stand on your shadow.

Once they've done this, you run around after their shadow.

10. Make sand angels

Get your little one to lay on their back in dry, soft sand and move their arms up and down, and their legs in and out.

You do the same, then you both stand up to view your sand angels.

11. Make a sand turtle

Forget sandcastles, sand turtles are so much more fun for little ones.

Make two low, rounded mounds of sand next to each other, a large one for the shell and a smaller one for his head: have lots of fun smoothing and patting the sand into shape.

Then make four simple fins, find two little stones for his eyes, and decorate his shell with sea shells you've found on the beach.

If the sand’s solid enough, he should survive being crawled over, sat upon and taken for an imaginary adventure across the sea!

12. Make a sensory pit

Don't just save heuristic play for indoors. Scoop out a shallow hollow in dry, soft sand and pour a couple of buckets of water over one half.

Your baby will enjoy exploring the difference in texture between the wet, rough, cold sand and the dry, soft, warm sand.

Encourage them to feel it with their feet, as well as their hands.

Do your best to stop your baby putting sand in their mouth.

You could try adding large shells, pebbles and seaweed to the water hollow to add to fun.

If they do, try to get as much out as possible and give them a drink of water.

13. Play football

Learning how to kick without falling on your bottom is one of the trickier tasks in your toddler’s life.

Get them to stand in front of you with the breeze coming towards you.

Give them a beach ball and ask them to kick it. The wind will make it move in your direction – success!

14. Sort shells

Take a bucket and go for a walk with your little one along the beach gathering shells as you go.

Then when you get back to your spot go through the bucket of showers discussing them as you go and perhaps arranging them in patterns on the sand.

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