Dixie shares her experience and expertise in all things dating.
A Memorable Date Takes Planning
He said that he always wanted to have a date at the beach, he wanted to do something memorable. I wanted to create the memory for him. It was not for me, but for a dear friend and his girlfriend. A business trip took them to California.
I looked everywhere, but there seemed to be no solid guidelines on what to do for a beach date. Here is my list of what I did and how it turned out. I have basically copied this down straight from the notes I took a few years ago because it turned out so perfect.
You will need to do a little planning and homework, but once you are done, it will be a perfect day. Don't skip the planning and hope for the best, because those are not the memories that you want.
Seasons Will Affect What You Will Do
Yes, there are some places in the world where it is temperate year round. Research where you are going and learn what the weather is like for when you will be there. Here are some things to consider:
- Beaches get cold at night. You might find this hard to believe, but it is true. Cold. Not a cute little cuddly in the blanket cold, but a real cold.
- Fires are not legal on all beaches, and for ones that they are legal, you may need to have a permit and pay a fee in advance. Learn the law. Better than learning how to pay a ticket.
- Certain beaches are safe havens for wildlife. Choose your beach carefully according to the season. You don't want to plan a get away to a beautiful beach to have it closed off while turtles lay eggs or seals hang out. Check the seasonal activities of the beach you are interested in.
- Some beaches allow campers and RV's to park on the actual beach for a fee. Check to see what times of year this is allowed and how much it costs. Make sure that you look into the availability and fees for a tow truck if you get stuck!
Imagine Your Perfect Day and Plan it Out
Imagine your perfect day. You get to the beach in time to watch the sun come up as you share a cup of something hot with your beloved. You have soft music playing in the background, and you cuddle together on short lounge chairs that are covered in blankets. You even have bathrobes and warm slippers. Afterward, you both lay on the chairs and let the sun warm your bodies until it is over your head, when the umbrella protects your view.
What Kind of Planning Is Involved?
- Thermos with a hot beverage and two cups
- Radio with batteries that are fully charged or a charged solar radio
- Folding lounge chairs
- Warm Slippers
- Beach Umbrella
- Bottles of Water
In every sentence that you write about your perfect day, you should stop and write down what it will take to make those elements happen.
Learn the Tide Schedule
The tide schedule does not seem important. After all, you want to really enjoy the beach and feel the water lapping at your toes, right? Until you feel the water moving your lounge chair, that is!
Learning the tide schedule will allow you to decide when to come out, and when to wait. See how high the waves are supposed to be. Make sure that you double check your information. Note if there is a high tide or low tide warning and heed it.
Locate Public Facilities
Learn the following information about your ideal beach:
- Where is the nearest parking to where you want to go? Is it secure? Is there a fee? Do you pay in coins, paper money, credit card?
- How long are you able to park your car?
- Does the beach have an opening and closing time?
- Where is the nearest place to rinse off sand?
- Where is the nearest bathroom? Is there a charge for using it?
- Where is the location of a changing station to change from swim wear to street clothes?
- Is there a lifeguard station nearby?
- Is there a place nearby that sells food, water and sunblock?
- Where is the nearest ATM?
- Are there online reviews of where you are going so that you can look for items like safety?
Learn ALL the Rules
Don't waste time just learning the rules that you care about. Look up your beach and learn all of the rules. There are most likely rules on:
- Dogs and leash laws
- Dogs and body waste
- Children and flotation devices
- Children and diapers
- People and swimsuit coverage
- Low and High Tide warnings
- Who to call in an emergency
- Hours of operation
- What is and is not allowed on the beach
- Music and noise laws
- Parking laws
Things You Might Forget
You may be thinking of a warm, romantic, cozy and warm getaway with your sweetheart,
Here are some things to consider. Beaches are typically windy. Expecting that things won't get blown over in the wind is silly. If you are wanting to do things like play board games and spend quiet time together, it might be worth your while to get a pop-up cabana that you can both lay in to act as a windbreaker.
Sunburn happens. If either of you starts getting pink, it is already too late. Pack it in, get some aloe vera and get out of the sun. Remember to apply sunblock about once every half hour or so if you want to avoid this. Yes, it is a big inconvenience, but so is a sunburn.
Stay hydrated. Even if you are not moving around, your body is burning through water. Drink water. Water is your friend. Even more so if you have a few alcoholic drinks.
Put your keys somewhere that you will remember. Like inside your shoes that go into a tote bag.
Ask About Allergies
Some people have allergies that the rest of us don't know about. I have a friend who is allergic to sand and sand mites. They make her get huge red bumps all over her skin and she has to get a shot to feel better.
Learn if your partner has allergies and make sure to take proper precautions.
Check Out Rental Features
Some beaches offer some really neat things to do and rent. I have seen the following items for rent when at a beach:
- Jet Ski
- Water Skis
- Golf Carts
- ATV and Dune Buggies
- Scuba Gear with proof of certification
- Snorkel Gear
- Surf Boards
- Boogie Boards
- Body Boards
I am sure that there are more items, but if you plan on renting these things, check out the rates and forms of payment ahead of time.
Find Nearby Attractions
I was so glad that my friend looked at attractions near the beach they went to because halfway through the day, it began to pour down rain. They quickly packed everything into the trunk of the car, changed clothes and went to some nearby aquariums and saw a bunch of great sea life that would have been missed.
Look and see what is near where you are going and get discount coupons before you go.
See if the area that you are going to has any mailing lists or discounts available and you could end up getting some cool freebies.
Clothes to Always Bring to the Beach
I love the idea of sitting in swimsuits, watching the water come in. Sometimes, the beach is too cool for that, or the wind picks up.
Here is a list of what to always bring to the beach with you:
- Shoes: Even when it is pleasant, it might be too hot to walk a long distance on the beach.
- A Hooded Jacket: The hoodie look is not a trend, it is practical.
- Loose, Lightweight Pants: Nothing is less fun than trying to pull jeans over legs that have had sand and sunblock on them.
- A Very Loose T-Shirt: Too much sun or just for comfort, a loose t-shirt lets you be comfortable.
- A Scarf or Bandanna: Use them to get excess sand off or to cover shoulders that may have been sunburned.
- Powder of Some Kind: This is not an item of clothing, but it is essential. Bring powder to sprinkle on your dry skin where sand is touching and wipe it off. Amazing. I could not believe how well this worked.
Have Fun and Go With the Flow
No matter what else you do, remember that a beach date is supposed to be fun. Have fun. If you are not having fun, pack it in and enjoy yourself.
Check your local paper for special events happening at the beach and make that a part of your plans if going all out on your own seems like too much work.