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9 Out-of-the-Box Things to Do at the Beach This Weekend

April 15, 2023 4 min read

There’s no better way to spend a summer day than at the beach. While most people go to the beach to escape the summer heat, there’s a lot more you can you do than just laying out on the sand.

With the help of all the beach bums I know, we’ve compiled a list of things that you can do for the best beach day ever. There are ideas here for swimmers and non-swimmers alike – this is a list for everyone!

Before You Go: Pre-Beach Snack Run

1. Trader Joe’s Ritual

We always head to Trader Joe’s before the beach. It’s become somewhat of a tradition for us. Not only do we have our go-to beach snacks we always buy, it’s also an opportunity to try new ones.

My personal favorites are the Chili & Lime Rolled Tortilla Chips and GT’s Kombucha in Trilogy.

My favorite Trader Joe's snacks - the Chili & Lime Rolled Tortilla Chips and GT’s Kombucha in Trilogy.

Pro Tip: Chips and cookies are great, but can be dehydrating. Bring along lots of water and moisture-rich foods, such as fruit and veggies with dip. They’ll also keep you from getting less exhausted while you’re under the sun, which means more time to play.

Pro Tip 2: Trader Joe’s is the place to go if you want to buy some items for your charcuterie board (see tip 5). Also, don’t forget to pick up some graham crackers, chocolate, and marshmallows if you’re planning on having a bonfire later.

Things to do in the water

2. Swim, Boogie Board, & Body Surf

Swimming in the ocean is a lot of fun, but it’s even better if you wear fins. Fins specifically made for ocean swimming will help you stay mobile and move around quicker in the tide. These pink DaFins are my favorite fins for swimming, boogie boarding, and body surfing. If you don’t have a boogie board, pick one up at Target or Walmart. They’re a ton of fun.

3. Bring Floaties

Yes, floaties – like the ones you use in the pool. They are perfect for riding swells and waves. Get this fun 3 pack on Amazon or head to Target or Walmart with some friends and have fun picking out unicorn floaties together.

Pro Tip: Head out to the sweet spot just before the waves break. Relax on your floatie and let the swells bob you up and down.

Riding Floaties in the Ocean with Friends!

4. Snorkeling

Snorkeling isn’t just for those lucky enough to be near tropical waters. Chances are, you might have great snorkel spots nearby. Just ask Google!

For all those in Southern California, we recommend Laguna Beach (Shaw’s Cove and Diver’s Cove), Corona Del Mar, and La Jolla.

All you’ll need is a snorkel mask. Fins and a wetsuit are optional.

We’ve spotted lots of pretty sea critters, including fish, sea urchins, and dolphins. If you’re lucky, you might meet some friendly seals. We came across these two on our last snorkel trip! Luckily we had our GoPro with us.

Seal Spotting while Snorkeling

Things to do out of the water

5. Charcuterie Board (if you’re feeling fancy)

Do it for the gram, or do it for gastronomy. While a charcuterie board is best enjoyed with friends, it’s also great to have one all to yourself.

All you need is a board, cheese, jam, meat of choice and crackers (PS vegans – vegan meats and cheeses work just as well!).

Optional: Add in fresh and dried fruit, nuts, and herbs for garnish if you’re feeling extra fancy.

There’s no wrong way to do a charcuterie board. The more variety, the more exciting and vibrant your platter will look. As the Japanese say, we “eat with the eyes”. So the more variety and colors you have, the more enjoyable and boujee you’ll feel.

Although if you’re easy to please like me, a simple cheese and cracker plate will still get you feeling cute ‘n fancy.

Charcuterie Boards are perfect for the beach

6. Skimboard

Go to any beach in SoCal and you’ll see plenty of people gliding across the sand on their skimboards. If you’ve got plenty of wet, smooth sand at your beach, you’ll want to try skimboarding. Skimboards look like a small, thin, finless surfboard. It’s almost like a combination of surfing and skating in one. But you don’t need to be able to swim to do it, and the learning curve is much lower. It’s quite simple: all you do is run along the water, throw your boards down, and glide along the wet sand.  It takes a few tries to get it right, but once you know how to do it, you’ll want to be gliding on your skimboard the entire day.

7. Spikeball

If you haven’t already heard of Spikeball, there’s a good chance you’ve seen it around. Described as “the love child between volleyball and four-square”, it’s played 2 vs 2. Each opponent “spikes” a ball at a net in the center to bounce the ball between teams. When they miss, you score. It’s a super simple game that’s also portable – everything fits in a bag that’s included with the kit. You and your friends will have a ton of fun playing this at the beach.


8. Let’s Go Fly a Kite!

There’s something magical about kites. No matter your age, flying a kite really brings out the kid in you!

There are a lot of different kites out there. A kite like this one is perfect for a day at the beach.

Have fun running through the sand and watching your kite soar through the sky.

Pro Tip: Fly your kite while you’re relaxing on your floatie in the ocean. We haven’t tried this one yet, but it sounds like a lot of fun.

9. End the Day with a Bonfire + S’mores

If fire pits are available at your beach, you’ll want to reserve them early in the morning. The fire pits in Huntington Beach are super popular in the summer and are usually reserved by 9am. Reservations are by a first-come, first-serve basis. To reserve a fire pit, place chairs around one to let others know it’s taken.

Bring a lighter and firewood for the fire. If you want to make s’mores, bring skewers, marshmallows, graham crackers, and chocolate. Don’t forget chairs and blankets as well.

What are your favorite things to do at the beach? Let us know below!

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