7 Ways to Get the Most out of the Beach with the Kids ...

The summer is here, the kids are out of school, the mercury is rising - what better way to keep everyone cool and occupied than by taking a trip to the beach with kids. Of course, just tossing a few towels on the ground and letting everyone have at it is sure to make for a good time; actually putting a little bit of effort into going to the beach with the kids will ensure that everyone has a killer time (and I'm not talking about monumental efforts, either). Here are some easy, yet super ways to get the most of your next beach adventure.

1. Take the Necessities

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Okay, it should go without saying, but bringing along the necessities is crucial for getting the most of of the beach with kids. Forgetting the sunscreen (ouch!) or towels is sure to put a damper on your experience. So, make sure you have everything you need before you go.

2. Don't over Pack

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While it's important to bring everything you need, you don't want to overdo it. Believe it or not, taking too much can be a drag. You'll have to lug it all to the beach, make sure you bring it all home and then unpack it all. Stick to the necessities.

3. Bring Activities

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While the sand and surf present enough entertainment on their own, bring along an extra activity or two. A volleyball, a kite or a boogie board, for example, can make your beach day even more special.

4. Enjoy Quality Time Together

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Relaxing is one of the points of a beach day, but you don't want to cast one another out. Make sure to spend some quality time with your kids. Go for a stroll along the beach; play in the water; build a sandcastle; look for shells. The options are limitless and everyone will remember the bonding.

5. Let Them Explore

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While you do want to spend some time together, if you have older kids, let them enjoy some freedom, as well. Allow them to explore on their own a bit. Let them swim by themselves or go for a walk along the beach, or even just grab lunch from a nearby deli. They'll appreciate the independence and you'll appreciate a little time to yourself.

6. Take Friends

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Of course, you want to bond as a family, but friends can always make an experience even better. So, invite your kids' friends along, and invite some of your own. More people can equal more fun, and that can make your beach day even better.

7. Enjoy the Moment

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Before you know it, summer will be over and your children will be grown (am I getting ahead of myself?). That said, make sure you enjoy the moment while you have it. Put away your phone, your tablet and all other technology. You are out in nature with your family; enjoy this rare opportunity. You have the rest of the year, and every other day for high-tech gadgets. Take this moment to bond with the people who matter the most to you.

The beach is my haven in the summer and I enjoy it to the fullest with my little guy. Is the beach on your agenda this summer? If so, how are you planning on making the most of it?

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