Fun activities for the beach

You don’t need to travel across borders to have fun on a beach this summer. Canada is full of beautiful places to explore with your feet in the sand.

young girl playing on the beach

From Wasaga Beach in Ontario to Long Beach in British Columbia, Singing Sands in Prince Edward Island to Grand Beach in Manitoba, Canadian beaches are just as impressive as those found across the border or in other parts of the world.

These sandy playgrounds are the perfect spots to vacation with friends or family. So, what are you waiting for? Here are some fun activities to make the most out of your beach getaway.

Hopscotch

Do you like playing hopscotch on the street or in your driveway? Take advantage of all that sand and draw a hopscotch game right on the beach. All you need is a small object to toss as a marker. If the sand starts to burn your feet, throw on a pair of sandals or water shoes.

Draw it out

You’ve probably played a drawing guessing game before. With easy-to-learn rules, you can leave the pen and paper behind and try a new version: “Guess what I’m drawing” on the beach! All you have to do is sketch your masterpiece in the sand or trace on your friend’s back while applying sunscreen. Lots of giggles guaranteed.

Cover me up!

Want to be the coolest parents at the beach? Let your kid bury your legs in the sand. Just digging in the sand will entertain them for hours! Just remember to rinse all that sand off your body when you’re done and take a nice shower when you get home.

Sandcastles

The number one activity we all think of on the beach is building a sandcastle. Challenge your child to build the tallest tower, or to add ramparts, a moat, and a drawbridge. Kids love to make-believe and create a whole world they can lose themselves in (is that a dragon on the beach?).

Sand angels

Who hasn’t made a snow angel before? Lie down on your back next to your kids and spread your arms and legs wide, dragging them back and forth in the sand. Always fun! But, don’t be surprised if you get bits of sand everywhere!

Father and two kids

Treasure hunt

This one is a lot less sandy. A treasure hunt is fun for the whole family. Set off on a quest to find interesting rocks, unique shells, or take the opportunity to clean up the beach and see who can collect the most trash and recycling. Bring gloves and a bucket. You’ll be surprised how many things you can find on a beach. This game is fun and environmentally responsible.

Let's race! 

Set up an obstacle course or a relay race and make up your own rules. If the beach is crowded with lots of people, mark off an area to play so that no one gets hurt. From the moment you say “go” until they reach the finish line, each participant has to obey your rules (even if they’re silly): hop on one leg without falling, walk backwards without spilling a bucket of water, run back and forth with a small container to fill a big bucket with water or sand, etc. These types of races are great for improving agility and teaching kids to work together.

Ball games

Bouncing around the trunk of your car or tucked underneath the stroller, a ball is almost always within reach. Perfectly suited to the sand, sports like beach volleyball and soccer are sure to be hits on your family vacation this summer. No matter your comfort or skill level, feel confident to join another group on the beach or form your own teams by approaching other friendly beach-goers. If the goal is to have fun under the sun, everyone will want to play.

beach paddles

Racquets

Racquet sports are great on the beach. Grab a tennis racquet, beach paddle, or badminton racquet and start playing by the water’s edge. Depending on the amount of wind, you can try a whole range of different activities. Plus, lots of summer beach destinations have nets and courts nearby or right in the sand! You can usually book them for a small fee. Practice your serves, slices, and drop shots this summer while on vacation. You can improve your skills while playing and having fun!

Musical...towels

Musical chairs is a popular party game that’s been enjoyed for many generations. Why not move this tried and tested classic outside—without having to bring any heavy furniture with you. By swapping chairs for beach towels, you have almost everything you need. Bring along a waterproof speaker so you’ll be able to start and stop the music without straining your singing voice. 

beach towels and surf boards on the beach

Best throw

Who has the right touch and the best aim? Who can throw the farthest? Crown a new champion this summer. Play with a frisbee or a boomerang, and encourage everyone at the beach to throw themselves into the action. Who knows, you might discover a hidden talent!

Another activity you might want to try is Kubb - a game of precision and strategy played between two opposing teams.

Have you ever played petanque in a city park? Why not take it to the beach? You want to toss your ball as close as possible to the “cochonnet” (the closer you are, the more your opponent will sweat). This is a perfect beach game full of friendly competition and fun for all levels.

Finally, who will be the big winner and take home the Sandy Cup after a round of improvised tennis ball bowling or once the final point is scored with a “Mölkky” in a game of Finnish skittles? Try these and more on your summer vacation!

If you don’t want to miss out on any of the fun mentioned above, be sure to stay well by protecting your skin from the sun and eating small meals and snacks throughout the day (even if you don’t feel hungry). Don’t forget to drink lots of water before you feel thirsty. Bring along some snacks (fruit is a great choice), cold water (with ice) in an isothermal bottle, sunscreen, sunglasses, hats or caps, and UV protective clothing. You can also bring a shelter to provide your family with a shady place to relax. Don’t forget to bring a few chairs and, above all, to have fun! Happy summer holidays!

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