With summer in full swing and kids out of school, many parents are planning the perfect summer getaway. It's not easy finding a place that offers entertainment for children and a relaxing vacation for adults. However, with miles of seashell-covered sand dunes, manageable waves and beautiful scenery, beaches provide the perfect summer escape.
That is, if you choose the right one.
Many coastal areas are either too dangerous for children or tailored to an older clientele. When looking for an appropriate beach to vacation with your family, you need to consider safety, atmosphere and kid-friendly activities. Here are seven beaches that are sure to keep both you and your kids happy this summer.
Coronado Central BeachCoronado, Calif. 1 of 8
A short hop from San Diego, this quiet beach offers beautiful views, soft sandy beaches, warm waters and the historic Victorian Hotel Del Coronado, which offers ice cream from MooTime Creamery. Kids can enjoy boogie boarding, beach volleyball and building sand castles.
Siesta BeachSarasota, Fla. 2 of 8
Boasting some of the softest sand in the world, this Gulf Coast beach's sand is 99 percent quartz, which provides a soft, cool surface for your feet. Siesta Beach offers vacationers crystal-blue waters and a playground to keep the young ones happy. Also, be sure to check out the fitness trail and volleyball courts.
Hanauma BayOahu, Hawaii 3 of 8
This marine life conservation district is only a short drive from the world-famous Waikiki Beach and offers snorkeling galore. Thousands of marine life specimens call the coral reefs of these shallow waters home. Even if your child wades a short distance, he or she is sure to see dozens of beautiful fish. If you're planning a Hawaiian vacation with your family, Hanauma Bay is a must.
Myrtle BeachMyrtle Beach, S.C. 4 of 8
Expansive sands, an amusement park and Ripley's Aquarium make Myrtle Beach an ideal family getaway. As a major center of tourism, the South Carolina city offers loads of activities to keep your kids happy and occupied while the resorts and beaches give mom and dad time to relax.
Mayflower BeachDennis, Mass. 5 of 8
Northeastern families flock to this gem of a beach, which offers the calmest waters in Massachusetts' Cape Cod. Kids can play in the shallow waters of tidal pools or spend hours scouring the beaches for sea life while parents relax in the cool, soft sand.
Cannon BeachCannon Beach, Ore. 6 of 8
Cannon Beach is a state-protected marine garden, so tidal pools around the beach are teeming with beautiful sea life. The windy shore offers fantastic kite flying for kids, and Haystack Rock, standing 235 feet out of the ocean, provides majestic views. The water is colder compared to other beaches, however, so you might consider renting a wetsuit if your kid wants to dive in.
Coligny BeachHilton Head, S.C. 7 of 8
Hilton Head's 12 miles of shoreline attract visitors from across the globe, but the island's Coligny Beach gives families the perfect mix of hard-packed beaches and shallow, calm water. The sand is perfect for sand castle building, and the shallow water provides a great way for less-confident swimmers to enjoy the water. Don't forget to visit Harbour Town and climb to the top of the lighthouses.