Sandcastle building, swimming, and lounging in the sun: a beach trip is truly summer at its best. Don’t let your next trip bum you out, though: we’ve got ways to make sure you stay cool, protect your assets and even keep sand out of your car (well, kinda). Click through the gallery for 15 ideas that will make your next trip to the beach so much easier.

Dig Yourself a Hole

A long day at the beach means your little one will need a comfy place to nap. Before you have visions of dragging a pack ‘n’ play over the dunes, consider digging a hole. Yes, just dig a shallow, wide hole, lay down a towel, and, after a little rocking, place your wee one down. Be sure to angle your umbrella just right, to ensure your kiddo has a shady spot for her snooze-fest.

photo: Our Lady of Disgrace via flickr

Do you have any beach hacks to share? Tell us in a comment below!

—Natasha Davis & Amber Guetebier