It’s vacation time for the kids, and you’ve got your much-needed break from the daily routine of packing lunches and supervising homework. If you want to visit one of India’s gorgeous beaches and are worried about how suitable it is to visit with your kids or whether they will be engaged enough, we’re here to help. Book your flights with Skyscanner and head out to make those sandcastles on some of the best beaches for children. Oh, and while you are at it, here are some tips to make travelling with kids that much smoother!
Pondicherry with its rich heritage and fine beaches is a great place for a family vacation. The Promenade Beach is at the heart of the city and is a great place for a visit in the evenings. While it is crowded during the weekends, you can head out on any of the weekdays for a leisurely stroll with the kids.
Chunnambar or Paradise Beach, which is about 7 km away, is more secluded and very picturesque. The water is not very rough and is nice for swimming. If you want to spend some quality time with the kids, this is the place for you. The Dune Resort, a child friendly beach resort, about 15 km north of Pondicherry is a nice place to stay. With a kids’ swimming pool and several activities like pottery, kids’ yoga and biking, parents can relax while the kids indulge in some fun away from the beach as well.
Read more: 10 things to do in Pondicherry
If you thought Goa was all about the nightlife, then we’re here to tell you that it makes for a great family vacation too. Cavelossim, in South Goa is known for its serene beach with white sand and black lava rocks and is easily one of the best beaches in Goa for kids. Take a cruise and do some dolphin watching with the kids. Go on a sunset boat ride or indulge in some water sports. Cavelossim is also a great place to pick up cute sandals and sarongs for the little ones to get them into holiday mode.
While you’re in Goa, take your kids to Old Goa and explore the architectural highlights of this erstwhile Portuguese colony with them. Visit the Basilica of Bom Jesus, and The Cathedral of St. Catherine. Most travel companies offer organised tours of Old Goa. Visit the breathtaking Dudhsagar Falls, which you can reach by train (Colem Station), and then a short drive. Goa is connected by air to major Indian cities, and if you plan your trip well in advance, you can get cheap tickets. If you like, you can drive from Mumbai, Pune or Bangalore as well.
3. Palolem, Goa
Another one of South Goa’s kid friendly beaches, Palolem gets a diverse mix of travelers. With its swaying coconut palms and clean waters, Palolem is a great option when you’re in Goa with the kids. Hire a kayak and paddle around to explore the area.
Read more: Goa holiday shopping guide
Just a two-hour drive frrom Chennai, Mahabalipuram or Mamallapuram is a nice option for a quick getaway from the hustle and bustle of the city. The breathtakingly beautiful Shore Temple that stands overlooking the sea is a sight not to be missed, especially if you can catch a sunrise. History lessons are so much more lucid for the kids when they can actually see the architectural marvels of the Pallava kings.
The UNESCO World Heritage temples and monuments in the area including Arjuna’s Penance, and the Pancha Rathas make for a unique beach experience especially for children. On the East Coast Road from Chennai to Mahabalipuram, MGM Dizzee World is an amusement park that’s well known for its variety of fun rides. You can plan your trip so that you can spend a day there with the kids.
Located in the Sindhudurg District on the Konkan Coast of Maharashtra, Tarkarli is about 576 km from Mumbai, and arguably one of the best beaches in the country. The stretch of sea in this region is great for water sports like scuba diving and snorkeling. Go on a boat ride to see dolphins, especially early in the mornings before it gets too hot. Introduce your kids to the delicious Malvan food, and give them a history fix by visiting the imposing Sindhudurg Fort.
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Also on the Konkan Coast, Ganpatipule is a small town in the Ratnagiri district of Maharashtra. It is about 375 km south of Mumbai and makes for a very scenic road trip. The 400-year-old temple of Ganpati attracts thousands of pilgrims every year. Indulge in some parasailing if you want an adrenaline-rush, or just relax on the casuarina-lined beach. Make sure you visit Ratnagiri, less than 20 km away and home to the famous Alphonso Mangoes, especially during the summer. The Fern Courtyard resort in Ganpatiphule has a Kids club and playground where the children can enjoy a variety of games if they tire of the beach.
One of the longest and busiest beaches in the country, Marina Beach resembles a playground especially in the evenings. For a fun, lively beach experience especially for children, this one is a good option. The beach is very popular among early morning joggers and walkers. Indulge in a game of beach cricket or kite flying with your kids, and treat them to some roasted corn with a dash of lime. Marina Beach is usually safe, but it is swarming with people at all times, so you need to be extra cautious in keeping an eye on your kids.
While you’re in Chennai, it’s a good idea to take the kids to Vedanthangal Bird Sanctuary, an hour north of the city. The park attracts over a 100,000 migratory birds in November and December, and it is a beautiful place for a break away from the city.To teach the kids a little bit of history while having fun, take them on a Heritage Walk of Chennai and explore the lanes of the 2000 year old Mylapore, or the chaotic and vibrant Georgetown.
When it comes to white sand beaches and turquoise waters in India, little else beats the Andaman and Nicobar Islands. It is one of the best places in India to visit with kids. You’re spoiled for choice when planning a vacation to the islands. Radhanagar Beach, located 12 km from the Havelock ferry pier is considered one of the best beaches in Asia. Whatever you have in mind for your family vacation – water sports, exploring the walking trails around the beach or just enjoying each other’s company while lazing on the beach, Radhanagar won’t disappoint. Port Blair is connected to Chennai and Kolkata by non-stop flights, and there are several flights from these two cities connecting the rest of the country.
Barefoot Scuba is a well-known dive resort in Havelock, and they offer a range of courses. The minimum age for their Bubble Maker course is eight years, and their other diving courses are for ages ten and upwards. When you’re in Port Blair, go kayaking in the waters south of Viper Island, where the water is quite safe. The minimum recommended age for this activity is thirteen.
Read more: The best snorkelling destinations in India
Want to explore more kid-friendly destinations in India and abroad? Check out our articles on the best theme parks in Asia and Travelling with kids: tips for stress-free holiday.