20 Fun Beach Games and Activities For Children

Featured image of children at the beach running towards water

When it comes to going to the beach as a family, it’s always nice to have a game or two prepared to keep your kids active, happy and safe from boredom. But outside of regular beach ball, not many are acquainted with other fun beach games. So what else is there? You’d be surprised by how many choices there are.

Beach limbo

Limbo is a common game, what makes this beach version? Well, instead of a pole, you can use a beach towel, a pool noodle or rope. Play some music from your phone and see who can go the lowest without touching the improvised pole. As you take turns, the pole is lowered each time, and on every turn, you should make silly dance poses. The one who goes the lowest without touching the pole wins!

How low can you go?

Digging holes by itself can be fun, so make it more fun and set a competition! See who can dig the fastest, or who can dig a deeper hole, by filling it with water. You will need plastic toy shovels or buckets for this game, or you can try and dig with your hands. This is also a safe game, as it keeps your kids occupied at one place, and safe away from waves if they aren’t ready to go into or near the water on their own. Don’t forget to refill the holes in the end, for the safety of others.

Beach frisbee golf

This is a standard game of frisbee with a fun twist, making it one of the favorite beach games for kids! Instead of regular throwing between them, let the kids use the frisbee to throw it as close to a specific target as they can. Anything can serve as a target, a beach basket, an umbrella, other toys, or anything that you have brought with you or found lying around. This is a great game for the whole family, as both adults and kids can enjoy.

Water bucket relay

Kids love races, so spice this one up by adding some water and supplies. Instead of just seeing who can run the fastest, give your kids a shell or a spoon or something they can carry water in and let them race who can fill the bucket with water the quickest. They will need to be careful not to spill water out during their run, which makes the race more challenging and intense. It also helps children develop balance and agility, so it’s a perfect game to play on the beach!

Beach Bowling

Bowling is a fun family activity. But beach bowling is even better because you don’t have to rent shoes, you can just play barefoot. Bring with you some plastic bottles and a regular ball, or you can buy a plastic toy set for beach consisting of pins and a ball and go bowling on the beach. If your kids are older, you can put some water in the plastic bottles so they don’t tip over as easily. For younger kids keep the bottles empty and see them enjoy knocking over those bottles!

Beach Tug Of War

The difference between beach and regular tug of war is that you stand at the water’s edge. You can use towels tied together, or a rope if you have it and divide the family into two teams. Set the middle of the rope at the line you draw in the sand and let the game begin! Make it a challenge not to end up in the water to make it more interesting! Teams can be made from both adults and kids alike, the more the merrier! And this game is a great way for youngsters to develop balance.

Sand Hopscotch

A popular choice for the kids can be played on the beach as well, and you don’t even need to bring anything! Kids can use rocks and shells that they find on the beach or in the water and they can use a stick or their fingers, if the sand isn’t too hot, to draw the grid. To make the game last longer, they can make the grid from rocks instead of drawing it in the sand. During the game, they should avoid stepping on or moving a rock in order to go all the way down to the end of the grid.

Image of two boys with inflatable rings at the beach

Squirt Ball Race

Best beach games for kids are often improvised! This game uses beach balls and water guns. One of the most popular water guns nowadays are Super Soakers by Nerf, so keep that in mind. Divide into two teams and use as many balls as you want, just make sure that each team has the same amount. Draw lines in the sand of the teams’ boundaries and use squirt guns to move the balls from the opponent’s field into your team’s. The team who places all the balls into its field wins! You can also play it the other way around, and the winner is whoever pushes all the balls into the opponent’s field, leaving their team’s field empty. Of course, it is allowed to refill the squirt guns, so be prepared for it, and fill some buckets with water and keep them close to you.

Beach Treasure Hunt

A hunt for treasure is always fun, so make this a beach themed one. How? Simple, give your kids a bucket and a list of things they need to find. You can just write things down for them to find that are already on the beach, such as seashells, rocks, seaweed and so on, or you can come prepared and hide certain toys and objects and provide clues to where you’ve hidden them. Just make sure you have the list and remember where you hid them, and the child who finds the most objects or fills his or her bucket first wins!

Building Sandcastles and Sandman

Kids love challenges, and this everyday beach activity can be made more fun by adding a one. Get the kids to build a sandcastle as high as they can without it falling, and the tallest tower wins! Or they can build a Sandman, and use rocks and shells for buttons, nose, eyes and a mouth, and the team that finishes first is the winner. The winner can choose the next activity you can play in.

Flying a kite

Beaches are usually windy, so head on out and bring a kite! You can buy already built kites, or you can buy a build-your-own kite kit, and start from scratch. You might need some supplies to do this, like glue and scissors, so decide early which one would you and your child prefer so that you can be prepared. Your child can bring their kite in their kids backpack. Kites are fun and colorful and you can run with them or see who can fly their kites the highest.

Beach River

Since kids love to play in the sand, this activity will keep them busy. They can start building a river trench close to the water and go from there, creating a place for the water to flow as if it were a river. They can use plastic buckets and shovels to dig and create the channel. To make it more fun, place some floating things on there, and blow on them to reach the end of the river. A fun activity the whole family can enjoy!

Beach Dodgeball

For this version of dodgeball, use a beach ball instead of a standard dodgeball. Divide into two teams, and set a timer for the game. Start by throwing the ball in the air and the team who catches the ball goes first. Each player should take a step back and throw the ball at another player from the opposing team. The player needs to avoid it or catch the ball. If they fail, then the player needs to sit down. The team with the most players left by the end of the timer wins.

Iimage of two boys making sandcastles at the beach

Beach Obstacle Course

This fun activity is easy since you can create an obstacle course from anything you have with you. Use umbrellas, beach towels, baskets, sunglasses and slippers, and so on, and place them in the sand. The obstacle course can be placed near the water, and you can create a challenge to not get wet while passing through the course. Take turns running through the course and see who is the fastest and most skilled.

Beach Musical Towels

This game is the beach version of musical chairs. Scatter the towels on the sand, or place them in a circle. One person plays some music while the players dance or walk around the towels. Once the music stops playing, everyone should sit on the nearest towel. There should be one towel fewer than there are players, which means one player will be left standing. Each turn one towel should be removed until there is only one towel left. The person who gets to sit on it in the last turn wins.

Ping Pong Beach Race

Another one of fun beach games is ping pong ball race on the beach. This game is best played if there is a slope on the beach leading to the water. Dig up some ditches going to the water and divide into teams of one or two. Place the ping pong balls at the top of the ditch and release them at the same time. The ball that reaches the water first wins. This game can also be played with marbles. You can dig either one or more ditches, just make sure if you dig more than one, that they are the same shape and length.

Beach Sand Angels

This activity is great for all those kids who grow up in warmer climates and don’t get to make snow angels. Just lie down on the sand and start waving your legs and arms creating a sand angel. Then head into the water to wash off the sand from your body and hair. You can create other images in the sand with your body, or just simply draw with your fingers. In any case, it is a fun and creative activity for the whole family, as you can make an entire family of sand angels.

Beach ball race

A great way to race is using a beach ball. Each player gets a ball has to complete the race course. Draw start and finish lines in the sand and use either a whistle or horn to start the race. The players need to sit on the ball and jump to the finish line. They can only use their legs to balance the ball, while using their arms would disqualify them. Watch and see how much laughs this activity will bring with your family members!

Bury a friend

A simple but effective way to spend time together includes the activity of burying someone in the sand, either a friend or a sibling. Use either tools or hands for digging a ditch, and let someone lie in it. As they hold still, cover their body with sand. For best results, make sure the sand is damp so it can stick and hold better. You can even make shapes from sand, making it look like the person dug inside is a mermaid or whatever you can think of! Exciting and fun!

Beach ball hot potato

Stand in a circle and toss the beach ball to each other. Throw the ball to someone as soon as you catch it. One person stands near you, with their back turned to you, playing music. Their back is turned so that they don’t see who has the ball. Once the music stops the person who is holding the ball gets removed from the circle.

There you have it. A list of some of the most fun games for the beach for the entire family. And remember, you can do so much more with a little bit of imagination. Enjoy your beach time!

Author: Jonathan M. Ward
Author: Jonathan M. Ward

Himself a father of two, John is obsessed with getting the most out of every children’s product on the market, finding value wherever it can be found. His years of study in developmental psychology coupled with his passion for parenting make him an invaluable asset to our team.

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