This is Cape Town’s very best kept secret… While most folk want to visit in the heart of summer, when the wind blows and the heat is… well hot… the best time of year is now. Before the winter rains and after the Summer heat there is a perfect lull… of warm wind free days for playing outdoors and cool evenings for reading and hot chocolate… Did I mention wind free!!! And the whales start to arrive and who can resist watching whales. So Cape Town’s very best kept secret – visit our beaches now!!!
We have been playing lots of games on the beach lately… we call it sport!!! I am all about exercise as a way of life for my kids… a little bit of playful fun everyday… For ages it was riding bikes in the driveway, and the whole summer long is all about swimming. But it is getting just a little cold for swimming. Now is the perfect weather for marching on the mountain… and heading out to the beach for some serious sport.
Se7en of the Best Beach Games:
- Spades: This is by far our favourite beach game… and it is another version of musical chairs. Have a row of spades in the sand – one less than the number of players. They race from a start line to the spades and grab one… one player is knocked out. Line the spades up again and remove one. Race again… until you have just one spade and the winner is the last to grab a spade.
- The Chase Is On: The first player runs with a beach rake in hand… and leaves a wiggly trail. Give them a good start, it is hard work!!! Then let the players try and catch the leader… leave a gap between runners – not too far to dishearten and not too short that they can catch the player in front of them…
- Bucket Relays: This is a team sport. You need a beach and a bucket and a small cup. Race with a water filled cup to the bucket, pour the water in and race back. Pass the cup to the next player… and repeat until the bucket is filled.
- The Highest Tower: You really can set your own rules here, sometimes we use no tools; or only tiny spades; only buckets, only sea-shells… And then set the timer… my kids could play this all day and it gets fairly intense!!! This could just as easily be the deepest hole… but we use the tower in the next game… so build it up!!!
- Beach Toss: Tennis balls are perfect for the beach, the one we used the day we photographed was on a rope… but ordinary tennis balls work just as well. Use the highest castle as your target… and get everyone three chances to hit the target… you could elaborate this one up a little but and add circles and points… but it is enough for us to try and hit the target!!!
- Olympic Throw: Take turns seeing just who can throw the ball the furthest… with no run up, with a run up, over arm, under arm, on one leg, facing backwards… really anything goes – the more challenging the funnier!!! There is always just one winner in this game…
- Beach Cricket: Draw a small circle in the stand for the batter to stand in. The players stand around the batsman, whose legs, below the knee, form the “wickets”. The other players stand in a circle around the batter and toss, bowl, throw the ball at the players legs – use a soft ball like a tennis ball. The batter hits the ball and a player rushes to get it, they may only aim and throw for the batters legs from where they stop the flying ball (no creeping forward!!!). If the ball touches the batter’s legs then they are out and the player that threw the ball becomes the new batter.
- War: This is the last game of any trip we make to the beach and fundamental to any beach trip. We usually play a bunch of games and then they settle down to serious sand-castling. The castling easily falls into two groups and careful preparations ensure that they are ready for war when I say it is time to go. The players move away from their castles – that is a very important rule… because nobody likes sand thrown at them and we have a fixed rule… never ever throw sand at or near anyone at all. Once the teams are ready, they take turns to lambaste their opponents castles with their carefully prepared ammunition. The object is to see who can cause the most harm to the other’s castle. No, an adult would probably not have invented this game… but my kids love a good game of healthy destruction from time to time.
And back again…
And don’t rejoice too soon… the bucket isn’t full until it has been declared full by the person in charge!!!
And the Se7en + 1th: