Going to the beach is one of the best parts of summer, especially when you live in Costa Mesa. Some of the best beaches in the state are just a short drive away, including Huntington Beach and Newport Beach. Heading to the beach for some relaxing sunbathing, swimming, or water sports is a great way to spend your weekend.

A day at the beach should be a fun experience, and it will be if you plan ahead. If you know what to avoid at the beach, you can be sure to have a fun time and stay safe. Make sure to keep these three things from ruining your trip to the beach.

Dangerous Water Conditions

Swimming, surfing, paddleboarding, and other water activities can quickly become dangerous if water conditions aren’t right. Good weather outside doesn’t necessarily mean the water is safe for recreation. Check on water conditions for the beach you are traveling to before you head out, and talk to lifeguards when you get there to ensure it’s safe to go out. While you’re in the water, watch out for rogue waves and rip currents. Learn how to spot a rip current and how to get out of it if you get stuck out on the water.

Too Much Sun

While you are out enjoying the warm weather and lounging on the beach, remember to protect yourself from the sun. Turning into a lobster will ruin your day quickly, and it can raise your chances of developing skin cancer over time. Use plenty of sunscreen with at least SPF 30, and reapply often—especially if you go in the water. Wear extra layers and bring some shade to the beach, if you can. Staying safe in the sun is about more than just protecting your skin. Stay cool in the shade, drink plenty of water, and watch for signs of heat exhaustion.

Too Many People

Before COVID-19, seeing people at the beach wasn’t a reason to turn around and go home. Unfortunately, one thing you need to avoid at the beach right now is hanging out with too many people at the beach. Practice social distancing, and choose a different beach if the one you were planning on is too crowded. If you are feeling ill, just stay home. Make sure to check if your beach is open and what restrictions are in place before you go.

Planning is key to a successful outing, even for a relaxing day at the beach. When you know what to avoid at the beach, it is easy to prepare for issues that might arise. Watch out for these hazards to protect yourself and your fellow beachgoers.