Let’s be honest, Brighton beach isn’t great for children, writes Sarah Booker Lewis.
We may take our little people for a jaunt along the pier, but between the Palace Pier and i360 the prolific number of bars is not inviting to toddler.
Sand is lacking, even at low tide.
There is a patch of sand along our coast. Beach volleyball centre Yellowave has a huge sand pit for children to enjoy while parents sit back with a drink.
Both have sand dunes, so offer a great opportunity to get digging.
Close to home, Shoreham Beach has a fair amount of sand at low tide, offering a pleasant and sheltered paddle.
It is also popular with kitesurfers.
Completely out in the wilds to the west is Climping beach, with a short bank of pebbles before an expanse of sand appears at low tide.
Apart from the digging, building castles, demolishing and burying in the sand, here are a few free, fun games to play once you’re settled on the shore.
If you have more than one child this makes a great race.
It’s still fun on your own.
Place a bucket for each participant up the beach. Our racers have a cup to fill it with sea water.
The first to fill their bucket wins.
If you have music then burn the tiddlers’ energy with a game of musical towels.
This works well with a larger group rather than just one or two.
It works the same way as musical chairs, but you remove a towel each round.
There are so many things to find on the beach, from shells to driftwood and, of course, an abundance of pebbles.
In recent visits to the beach we found oyster, slipper limpet and whelk shells, as well as a cuttlefish bone and even a dead ray.
We didn’t touch the latter.
Your treasure hunt can include something orange, something square and so on.
Sort your pebbles into piles and see which colour makes the biggest pile.
There are a great many orangey brown pebbles on Sussex beaches, but you can find white, grey and black, too.
Once you’ve had enough of piling up your stone collections why not count your pebbles?
After a great deal of activity finding treasure and counting pebbles, making art in the sand is a lovely creative way to relax a while.
Build flowers, fish, boats and butterflies with your shells, driftwood and pebbles.
If there is enough sand on your beach, draw a target and see how close you can throw your pebbles to the bullseye.
Drawing multiple rings with different values is a great way to help little people adding numbers together.
Officréche is a flexible nursery and co-working space in Brighton.
Tags: activities for children, beach, beach games, brighton, Camber Sands Beach, children, Climping Beach, early learning, early years, learning through play, Littlehampton East Beach, outdoor play, parenting, parents, preschoolers, sensory play, Shoreham Beach, summer, Sussex, toddlers, West Wittering Beach, Yellowave