When it comes to beach party ideas, we like to think of them as more than just enjoying sand and sun.
Being out there next to the sea can be a rare opportunity for some.
Combined with the car or train ride down to the beach, and this humble beach visit becomes an exciting day out.
These fun seaside ideas are designed to keep that experience as memorable as possible.
Before you set off for the beach…
I love to fill my beach party ideas with fun activities, making the most of the surroundings.
But before you set out, do a check of what you’ll need to bring. Ask:
- What will be your activities? Playing music, swimming, beach volleyball, sandcastle building?
- What will the weather be like? Pack spare towels and beachwear. Also sweaters, for when it gets colder.
- What’s manageable to bring? And how to carry it? Car travel makes it easy (less so on the train).
In walking distance of the beach? Make sure to bring everything you need. That way, you avoid needing to pop home for the small things.
If you’re driving to the beach, drop in a few road games to make the journey down a pleasant one.
Beach party ideas for your activities
Beach Party Music — Prepare a few iPod playlists for the ride down. Here are a few summery tracks to start your lists:
- Cruel Summer – Bananarama
- Wipeout – Fatboy and the Beach Boys
- Summertime Blues – Eddie Cochrane
- In the Summertime – Mungo Jerry
- Under the Boardwalk – The Drifters
- Kiss Me Once – Kylie Minogue
- Summer Nights – John Travolta & Olivia Newton-John
Build a Sandman Contest — Which team can build a “sandman" – the sand version of a snowman – the fastest? Take photos of the results, for a post-party photo gallery.
- Award prizes for Best Sandman, Fastest-Made Sandman.
Sand Writing — In solo, pairs or small teams, write messages in the sand, with a stick. Send photos to friends as unique postcards of your day out.
- Turn this into an against-the-clock relay game – asking players to write the most obscure word for everyone to guess the meaning of. You’ll need a referee and dictionary.
Interesting Find — Set this up at the start of your party. Everyone involved is tasked with bringing back the most interesting object they find.
- This can be a physical object or a photo, of an object, scene or beach creature. Everyone votes their favorite, with a prize for the winner.
Get a Free Surf Massage — Probably the least active of these beach party ideas! Simply sit or lie down facing the surf and let the waves “massage" you.
- If it’s very hot and sunny, make sure to wear plenty of sunblock or find a shaded pool area.
Get Sporty — The most active of beach party ideas? Team sports! Make sure to bring a rope or net, for beach volleyball or tennis. Great for an after-food (or after-snooze) activity.
Sand Pictures — Players take it in turns to draw a picture in the sand, leaving everyone else to guess it. Give everyone 5 minutes to jot down 3 things they could draw.
Hold a Sandcastle Building competition — Award prizes for Best Design, Most Imaginative Design, etc.
Beach party ideas for your food
Bear in mind what’s portable and what’ll be perishable, when choosing your food.
Make sure what gets taken to the beach is eaten there, for example:
- Hotdogs, bacon rashers, chicken wings
- Homemade potato salad
- Garlic bread, regular breadsticks
- Sandwiches, cakes
- Fruit salad, apples, pears, oranges, bananas
- Fresh salads
Pick up ice cream on the way to the beach, instead of leaving home with any.
If you’re traveling by train, pack a lunch for everyone.
If you’re partying with bonfires, bring marshmallows and potatoes for roasting.
Keep your drinks in a cooler, e.g. Bottled water, lemonade, white wine, beer. Any food that could melt or go mushy fast should go in an ice cooler too.
Beach party ideas for your favors
Before the trip home, make sure to buy yourself a pack of postcards from the town of your beach. You’ll be using these later, to mail as thank you cards, thanking your guests for a fun time out.
- Food that has the beach or town’s name in it, like a cake, cookies, brand of wine
- A stick of rock or other seaside candy
- A nice rock or unusual object from the beach. Make sure it’s not alive or polluting
- Compilation of your roadtrip/beach music