Every active product claims to be the best beach game, but only a few of them actually live up to their claims. We’ve rounded up our top 7 picks, their pros and cons, and why we think you’ll love each one.
What’s the Best Beach Game?
While the beach may be about relaxation, swimming, and sunbathing all day, it’s also about fun in the sun activities that you can engage in with family and friends between bouts of swimming and lounging.
If lying down in the sun all day gets old, you can play a game to pass the time, getting a tan while entertaining yourself for hours.
Fun comes in all kinds of activities, and our picks of the best beach games are a mixed bag of entertainment with something for every taste, age group, and intensity level.
Our Picks for the Best Beach Games:
- Best Overall – KanJam Disc Slam
- Best for High Intensity Play – SpikeBall
- Best for Low Intensity Play – BulziBucket Toss Game
- Best for Portability – Activ Life Flying Rings
- Best for Kids – Djubi Slingball
- Best for Adults – Bucketball Beach Edition
- Best Budget Friendly Game – Pickleball
Whether you’re looking for affordability, portability, or age-appropriate fun for your beach vacation, we’ve got an option that will satisfy your needs and keep you entertained.
Why You Need a Beach Game
Beach vacations require little planning because you spend all day in one spot. Keeping things simple, beach vacations involve bringing an umbrella, a towel, and a cooler full of snacks and beverages to spend all day relaxing in the sand and cooling off in the sea.
While lounging and swimming may be all you need, bringing a beach game makes group and family outings to the beach infinitely more entertaining. Not to mention that exercise is good for everyone.
If you have young kids, it’s especially important to have various forms of play options on hand because they have too much energy to just sit on a towel all day.
Plus, you can watch them play a high-energy game from the comfort of your sandy post, so you still get to relax. Beach games cater equally well to young and middle-aged adults who are up for an active challenge or a ridiculous drinking game.
Beach games are versatile enough to be as simple or cerebral as you want them to be, and many of them combine high-intensity sports games with strategy. So, you can work up a sweat to make post-game dips that much more refreshing.
The 7 Best Beach Games in 2022
Here, we’ll go over our top 7 favorite beach games with a description of each game, why we love it, and what other users have to say about it. No matter which game you end up picking, you’ll add a layer of entertainment to your beach vacation that will take fun in the sun to a whole new level.
1. Best Overall – KanJam Disc Slam
KanJam Disc Slam is a disc golf game adapted for team and beach play. You play KanJam in groups of four with two-people teams. The object of the game, as with disc golf, is to hit the goal basket with your disc, racking up 21 points before the other team.
However, unlike disc golf, you play on a team with players on the same team helping each other score points. One member from each team stands by one of the goalposts while the other member stands at the opposite goalpost to toss the disc towards the goalpost where their teammate is standing.
The teammate closest to the goal post can hit the disc with their disc to help it either hit the goal post or make it into the basket. The points earned for each toss depend on whether the disc needed help or not to hit the goal post or enter the basket.
This game is dynamic, strategic, and fun without being overly demanding physically. It is also simple enough for kids to play, but adults can make it more complex with endless possibilities for strategic duo plays.
Additionally, it can be a team game, or you can play it in pairs like a regular disc golf game. The goalposts are lightweight and collapsible for easy transport, and the discs are heavy enough to withstand strong ocean breezes. Plus, the discs glow in the dark, so you can play into the night.
2. Best for High-Intensity Play – SpikeBall
- Great game for exercise
- Easy to pick up the rules
- Adaptable for pairs or large groups
- More contained than volleyball
- Net tends to come loose
- Balls lose air
- Harder for younger kids
SpikeBall is a cross between foursquare and volleyball. It usually involves four players in teams of two, but you can adapt it for pairs or up to six players. If you want to work up a sweat and love competition, then this is the game for you.
This game is fast-paced, simple, and addictive. It comes with a collapsible net and a bouncy ball that each player uses their hands to spike against it. As the ball hits the taught net, it comes flying up into the air for a different player to spike back down.
The balls fly in unpredictable directions causing players to jump and lunge in all directions, which is made more difficult- and more fun- by the fact that you’re in the sand.
While the net may be a larger component than most other games on our list, its legs fold so that you can fit it in the trunk of your car. All setup requires is unfolding the legs of the net.
SpikeBall is very easy to get the hang of, and the fast-paced nature of the game makes time fly. SpikeBall will easily become a beach game staple.
3. Best for Low-Intensity Play – BulziBucket Ball Toss
A cross between cornhole toss and darts, BulziBucket Ball Toss is fun for the whole family. BulziBucket Ball Toss consists of a three-tiered bucket that looks like a vertical dartboard, giving you varying outcomes of points earned depending on which tier your ball falls into.
It’s a more complex and compact version of corn hole toss. There are two three-tiered buckets, three blue balls, and three red balls, so you play the game in two teams of up to three people per team.
The buckets lock together through a twist and snap mechanism, ensuring that no bucket gets left behind and easing the assembly process.
Furthermore, the buckets and balls are lightweight and compact, making for easy transport. Our favorite feature of BulziBucket is that the buckets float in water, so you can keep cool while playing under the hot sun.
4. Best for Portability – Activ Life Flying Rings
Frisbees are the ultimate outdoor activities for wide-open expanses, and these flying rings by Activ Life have adapted frisbees for the high winds you usually encounter at the beach.
In addition, these rings are the most portable because they are flat, lightweight, and with their ring shape, you can secure them onto the outer snaps of a backpack or even around your wrists to free up space in your beach bags and free up your hands to carry those beach bags.
The design of these rings will turn even the most inexperienced frisbee player into a pro because they are less likely to skew from wind, they glide up to 80 feet, and they’re easier to catch. Therefore, little kids love tossing frisbees as much as their parents do.
5. Best for Kids – Djubi Slingball
Slingball is an improved version of a simple game of catch wherein players use nets to catch and slingshot balls instead of throwing them with their hands.
Launching balls with the nets gives kids more force to throw the balls higher and farther, and it also facilitates catching the balls because they have a larger surface area and depth of pocket than their hands.
The nets and balls have a combined weight of one pound making them easily portable, and they are one of the cheapest games on our list.
6. Best for Adults – Bucketball Beach Edition
While you can certainly play this game with water inside the buckets, we all know that this Bucketball Beach Edition game is a glorified spring-break edition of Beer Pong, every college and young professional’s favorite drinking game.
This game comes with two sets of six durable hard plastic cups, one set in blue and orange. You also get two-hybrid ping pong balls that are light enough to float on water but heavy enough to handle strong winds at the beach.
Each set of six cups assumes a pyramid formation at three to four feet from the opposing team’s cups. Each team has two players, and each player takes turns trying to get their ball in one of the opposing team’s cups.
When a member lands the ball in the opposing team’s cup, the opposing team removes the cup from the pyramid and drinks the liquid in the cup. Whoever drinks all the cups first loses and must also drink their opponents’ remaining cups.
In all reality, it’s a win-win situation because the winners may get bragging rights, but the losers get all the beer! Of course, you can always fill the cups with water or Gatorade for the kids, which is both fun and hydrating.
7. Best Budget-Friendly Game – Pickleball
This pickleball paddle set comes with two wooden paddles and two lightweight plastic pickleballs. Pickleball is a hybrid of tennis and ping pong that you can play in doubles or on teams of two.
Using a super-lightweight ball like a ping pong ball similar to a tennis ball, you can play pickleball with or without a net. For beach pickleball, you don’t need a net at all, and you don’t let the ball bounce on the ground before you hit it either.
Pickleball on the beach is thus a much faster game that is played closer together than tennis, but you still might have to run back and forth depending on the ball’s trajectory.
Pickleball is as popular with kids as it is with adults, and makes for great beach tournaments for large groups of friends and families. We like that the rackets have a handy wrist band and slip-proof grip to ensure that you’ve got the firmest grip possible on your racket.
This game takes a bit of skill, so younger kids might get frustrated, but once you get the hang of it, you’ll spend hours playing and perfecting your swing.
Finding the Best Beach Games for You
Everyone’s got strong opinions on their favorite games, so it follows that picking a game is a delicate decision that isn’t as objective as picking a pair of nail clippers. Still, when it comes to buying a beach game, you should consider the following factors.
Portability and Ease of Assembly
A beach outing is all about simplicity and traveling light. You’re already going to be carrying bags full of snacks, towels, swim gear, and umbrellas, so you want to make sure your beach game doesn’t take up too much space and isn’t too heavy.
In keeping with the theme of simplicity, you want to ensure that the beach game you bring is easy to set up or requires no setup at all. Nothing is relaxing about tedious setups in the hot sun or multiple parts that are bound to end up lost under a ton of sand.
A great beach game should be versatile enough to be as simple or challenging as you want it. The premise of the game should be easy enough for anyone to understand, but with the option of adding elements of difficulty for players that want to up the stakes.
So, What Is the Best Beach Game?
Every game on our list is an excellent choice that’s sure to provide ample entertainment for kids and adults alike for many beach visits to come.
That said, our pick for the best beach game overall goes to the KanJam Disc Slam because it is a medium intensity game that is highly adaptable for any size group and versatile enough to challenge any age group.