Spring break is right around the corner, and for many it is already here. However, we live in Florida; so it is always Spring weather here even in the dead of Winter. I would like to offer you five tips for taking toddlers to the beach.
Sun Protection. Sun Protection is a must. This means from head to toe. The sun can burn your precious children’s skin in as little as ten minutes. Bring beach hats, sun glasses, have your kids wear t-shirts, and apply sun screen before and after getting in the water. Apply liberally and often. Do not forget the ears or the back of the neck. We use the spray sun screen because I can catch them as they whiz by me for extra doses!
Take frequent breaks in the shade. We were lucky enough to have found a few resorts and hotels that have a pool which is shaded partially from the sun. We have also found parks with trees within walking distance or even sat up on the porch. Do not be afraid to come in out of the sun from 10 am to 2 pm for naps, lunch, a movie, anything just to get out of the sun during prime ray time.
Spend time outside at sunset or sunrise. We usually spend a large amount of time outside during dusk and dawn to avoid the 10-2 hours where the sun is at full strength as I said above. In addition to seeing beautiful sunsets at night and sunrises in the morning, lots of interesting wildlife is out and about for the kids to poke around and look at. We usually find neat tidal pools with coquinas and lots of birds poking at them always to the delight of the kids.
Bring toys and understand you and they will get sandy. Bring lots of sand buckets and shovels and things to dig and explore with. Take the time to get dirty in the sand with them. My boys had the best time trying to bury Mommy and Daddy in the sand, and the sand castle building was the pinnacle of their vacation. There was no point in trying to pretend the sand would get washed off, even on the way into the hotel. I think we had sand in the car on the way home. It is the part of the vacation that you can take home with you.
Do not forget to take time to rest and drink water. When spend a lot of time in the sun it is important to rest and stay hydrated. Sometimes you can have so much fun you forget to stop to refuel and recharge, but you will pay for it if you don’t. Drinking water and rest are very important to balancing out a sunny vacation. Most of us want to take a vacation to unwind and relax. It is good for the parents and great for the toddlers. Even my teen needed to rest.