Kids love the beach! Adults love the beach! Everyone loves the beach! Unless of course you are allergic to the sun in which case I think I would cry.
And this my friends, is what we did all day. The boys went back and forth from building sand castles, digging holes, skim boarding and wave jumping.
Halfway through the day I walked over to the beach side restaurant and got us some lunch. I had the mahi burger and it was delicious! The kids barely wanted to stop and eat but it gave them a chance to warm up.
The water was chilly and my husband saved me from having to go in on that first day. God love him!.
That is Steve standing out there freezing while Colin rode the waves. Colin had a great time but came out freezing. Cam too. The only thing to do after that was to put on dry clothes and make sand angels in the hot sand. Of course. Why not?
We met a little friend as we were about to leave. This cute little guy was running for his life from the pack of seagulls that followed everyone around that had any resemblance of food in their hands.
You know you have had a good day at the beach when it ends like this....
The next day we went kayaking with the manatees. It was a great experience. There are all types of tours out there but we decided to make it an active trip rather than sit on a boat and have someone drive us around.
We had a great time on our 4 hour tour and none of us were any worse for the wear. Other than the flaming sunburn I had on the tops of my shins (didn't take extra sunscreen) everyone seemed to be in pretty good shape when we docked. Of course, they looked like pros.
All in all the kayak trip was a lot of fun. It was a really great experience for all of us to get an up close look at nature but not disturb it.
Do's of Taking Kids to the Beach/Kayaking
Do bring a lot of extra clothes including jackets. If you are there all day and the wind kicks up, the breeze off the water can be cold.
Do bring a lot of extra towels. It's hard to dry off with a super sandy towel.
Do bring your camera and money. In all my years of going to the beach I have never once had anyone (other than some really aggressive crows) mess with my stuff.
Do bring ziplock bags to collect sea shells.
Do stop and get some plastic cups or buckets at the local dollar store if you can. The kids will have a great time digging and building. You can donate them to another family on the beach when you are done with them.
Do bring lots of drinking water and snacks. Swimming in the ocean makes you thirsty and hungry.
Do encourage your kids to actually paddle the kayak. It will be a great help to you.
Do take your camera on the kayak. If they say it won't get wet, it won't.
Do take water, a snack and extra sunscreen on the kayak. As it turns out, you might not be back as soon as you think.
Do spend the extra money to park close to the beach if you have to drive there (i.e., not staying at a hotel on the beach). It will save you a lot of tears and frustration from tired kids walking miles back to the car.
Do promise your kids you will be back to the beach someday as you haul them off crying...this WILL happen.
Don'ts of Taking Kids to the Beach/Kayaking
Don't feed the seagulls or walk around with food in your hand. Also, don't toss sea shells like they are pieces of bread. The seagulls on the beach are aggressive (as are the crows). They will swoop down and peck at your food. Eat quickly.
Don't leave your sunscreen on the dock when you push off for kayaking. Take it with you.
Don't expect the lifeguards to keep a vigilant eye on your kids. That's your job as a parent. When there are 100 people in the water, the lifeguard can only do so much.
Don't skimp on the sunscreen. Sunburns are no fun, especially for kids.