If the beach is your idea of heaven on earth, you’re in luck. We’ve rounded up our favorite beach houses on Airbnb, and our locations span the coasts. Pack the swimsuits and sunscreen, get your snacks squared away and you are ready to go. Scroll down to find one that fits your travel plans, and book it before it’s gone!

Panama City, FL

Known for being a family-friendly beach town, there is a ton of stuff to do in Panama City. This charming cottage puts you right in the middle of things, and only two blocks from the beach. There are beach toys for the kids, a fully-stocked kitchen and even an outdoor shower for sandy toes.

Sleeps: 6

Cost: $196 a night

South Padre Island, TX

With ocean views and ½ block to beach access, this updated condo is perfect for families. There is a pool and hot tub available to guests, a rolling wagon and cooler, a grill and a fully stocked kitchen. They even provide eight beach towels and four chairs!

Sleeps: 8

Cost: $180 a night

San Diego, CA

Close to the bay and the pacific ocean, this hilltop home is ideal for families. A patio, bay views, a pool table, hot tub and being near the Pacific beach path means you’ll have plenty of things to do during your stay!

Sleeps: 8

Cost: $199 a night

Michigan City, IN

This three-bedroom home is minutes from so many things, from the beach to the zoo and the splash pad, as well as shopping and the arts district. There’s a fully stocked kitchen, a fenced-in backyard and a fire pit for after-dark fun.

Sleeps: 6

Cost: $147 a night

Gulf Shores, AL

Enjoy stunning views of the white sand beaches of the Gulf Shores, as well as a pool and hot tub. There are beach toys for the kiddos, towels for everyone and there are even blackout shades perfect for kids who need to nap. Grill out or use the full kitchen to make meals.

Sleeps: 6

Cost: $241 a night

St. Augustine, FL

This adorable new home is close to historic downtown St. Augustine and the beach. It comes with a cooler and a beach umbrella, as well as a hammock for downtime in the afternoon.

Sleeps: 8

Cost: $149 a night

Mount Pleasant, SC

Just 2 miles away from Sullivans Island Beach and seven miles from downtown Charleston, you’ll get both a cultural and a beach trip when you book this coastal villa. There’s a great backyard for kids, an outdoor grill and two bikes.

Sleeps: 6

Cost: $185 a night

Bodega Bay, CA

You’ll get amazing views and access to all the Bodega Harbor, including a Bocce ball court and kids’ playground, when you book this fantastic two-bedroom rental in Bodega Bay, CA.

Sleeps: 5

Cost: $199 a night

Brandford, CT

This beautiful, four-bedroom house has private beach access at Limewood Beach. A five-minute walk to restaurants, and a short Uber ride to the train station, this is a highly accessible rental that has kids’ books and toys, a pack ‘n’ play crib, babysitter recommendations and even baby safety gates. A perfect getaway spot for families!

Sleeps: 6

Cost: $221 a night

Salvo, NC

Located just five minutes away from the beach, this adorable family-friendly spot is also close to restaurants, walking/riding trails, museums, a park and a fun ice cream shop. It’s got a bunk bed, and a Roku too.

Sleeps: 6

Cost: $220 a night

Seaside, OR

Located on Seaside’s North Shore, this charming cottage is just 1.5 blocks away from the beach, and there’s access to other activities like kayaking, fishing, surfing and more. There are amenities like a bunk bed, a pack ‘n’ play crib and a backyard too.

Sleeps: 6

Cost: $131 a night

West Tisbury, MA

This charming spot on Martha’s Vineyard is a 15-minute walk to Lambert’s Cove Beach, which some say is the best beach on the island. There’s a sleeping porch and also a newly installed outdoor shower. While this spot might be a little farther away from town, it’s perfect for those looking to get away from it all.

Sleeps: 5

Cost: $241 a night

Oceano, CA

Smack dab in the middle of California’s central coast, you’ll be near Avila Beach, Pismo Beach and San Luis Obispo! This adorable house has a game room, a secret room under the stairs just for kids, as well as toys, cornhole and even Adirondack chairs perfect for relaxing after a day at the beach.

Sleeps: 8

Cost: $222 a night

Online: airbnb.com

Scarborough, ME

This charming turn-of-the-century beach house is not only super close to Grand Beach, but it’s a family’s paradise. There’s a whole playroom complete with a play kitchen, art supplies, puzzles and more, plus there are swings, a slide, a fire pit, a cozy side porch perfect for napping and more!

Sleeps: 9

Cost: $173 a night

—Gabby Cullen

Images courtesy Airbnb

The Best National Parks to Visit with Kids (& the Airbnbs to Book When You Do)

Heading back to school might look a little different this year, but one thing never changes—lunchtime! We’ve rounded up the coolest lunch boxes that parents and kids alike will love: they’re colorful, cute and (most importantly) easy to clean. Boys or girls, sporty or sparkly, or all of the above—there’s a lunch box out there for every type of kid. Keep reading to see them all.

Big Apple Buddies: Delancey Doggie

Meet Delancey. She’ll keep your kid’s food nice and cold, comes with a buckle that makes it easy to attach to a backpack if necessary, and her adorable fuzzy ears are comforting for a preschooler who might be heading to a classroom for the first time. This lunchbag is easy to clean and made with PVC- and BPA-free materials.

Available at amazon.com, $23.33.

Personalized Lunch Box

This zipper-sided lunch box will never get lost as it comes with your child’s name on the side.

Get yours on Etsy, $33.22.

Eco Reusable Lunch Tote

Older kids will especially like this eco-friendly option made using fully biodegradable material. It snaps closed so you bento boxes don’t fall out in transit.

Get yours on Etsy, $14.50.

Print Lunchbox by L.L.Bean

For older kids on the go all day, from school to lunch to after-school activities, you want a lunchbox that holds up yet won’t take up the whole backpack. Made of the same strong “packcloth” as its school packs and available in the same designs, these insulated, PVC- and PBA-free boxes have lunch covered—in brand new colors and prints, too.

Available at llbean.com, $19.95.

Skip Hop’s Zoo Collection

Not only is Skip Hop’s animal-themed gear adorable, but as a lunchbox, they’ve got the same quality you know and love from the brand. The roomy insulated interior keeps food and drinks cold, the mesh pocket will keep things organized, the easy-clean material is machine washable and there’s even a clip to attach to a backpack or diaper bag.

Choose a new friend at Amazon, $14.99.

Whiskware Insulated Lunch Cooler

We love the simple design of this lunch box and it’s slim fit is easy to pack in your child’s backpack. They are the perfect size for those long and flat bento boxes that everyone loves.

Get yours at Amazon, $15.99.

Avocado and Oranges Lunch Box

We love these soft lunchbox options that come in fun patterns like avocados, oranges and lemons. They are insulated to keep everything cool.

Get yours on Etsy, $10.79.

Freezable Lunchbox from PackIt

We know and love PackIt’s line of lunchboxes with their chill factor built right into the foldable, freezable bag. You’ll never forget the ice pack again—or take up room fitting it in along with everything else. Choose from cheerful prints like astronauts in space, rainbows and unicorns, and colorful superheroes.

Pick your favorite at amazon.com, $21.50.

Canvas Lunch Totes

You’ll love the cute patterns for this canvas lunch tote that comes in clouds, pineapples and cactus. A velcro top hold everything in.

Get yours on Etsy, $13.22.

photo: Courtesy of Lands’ End

Kids EZ Wipe Printed Lunch Box

The EZ wipe lunchbox from Land’s End has a widened grab handle, added best-in-class YKK zippers and sturdy mesh pockets for hefty ice packs. It’s made from the same materials as their durable backpacks and can be clipped right onto them as well for convenient carrying. You also won’t have to worry about anything spoiling before lunchtime, as this lunch box is insulated, leak-resistant, and guaranteed to keep ice-packed food cold for five hours. All Lands’ End products actually come with a happiness guarantee! Choose from 10 different print combos, and don’t forget, monogramming is also available for an additional $8.

Order one at landsend.com, $24.95.

photo: Courtesy of Eco Lunchbox

Lunchbag by Eco Lunchbox

From its cord handle to green-certified screen prints, this handmade lunchbag is organic, machine washable and environmentally friendly. With all the plastic already in our kids’ lives (and oceans), the intention of this eco lunchbox is not to use an ounce of it. Their coordinated Splash Box bento is made of stainless steel and silicone and also helps achieve a zero-waste lunch. Available in sweet seahorse, sea turtle, dolphin, and whale motifs.

Available at ecolunchboxes.com, $18.99.


From unicorns to owls, elephants and hearts, there are dozens of different Dabbawalla lunchbags your kiddo can choose from. Each one has an easy-zip closure, mesh pockets for drinks and snacks and a sturdy handle. Made from washable, degradable foam, the hardest part about choosing this bag will be which style!

Available at dabbawalla.com, $30.

Thermos Soft Lunch Kit

The leader in insulated lunchbox accessories means this bag from Thermos will keep your kiddos lunches nice and cool, or warm. The bag comes with a padded carrying handle, an amazing variety of patterns and is made with 100% PVC free material. It’s constructed with PEVA lining and closed-cell polyethylene foam insulation for the best lunch bag around. You can pick from over 20 styles, too!

Order one from Amazon, $9.98.

Art of Lunch Insulated Neoprene Lunch Bag

This 4 mm-thick neoprene lunch bag from Art of Lunch is fashionable and functional. Made from lead-free and PVC-free materials, this larger-than-average bag is also stain-resistant and machine washable. You’ll be treated to beautiful designs from artists all over the world, all while enjoying a nice chilly lunch. Choose from nine vibrant designs.

Grab one from Amazon, $24.95.

Wildkin Lunch Box

A zippered front pocket, as well as a main compartment, means there’s plenty of room for food, drink and utensils in this bag by Wildkin. It’s made from sturdy and durable fabric and comes with mesh pocket for ice packs. This is a super basic and functional style with lots of design variety.

Check them out on Amazon, $19.99.

Fit & Fresh Kids’ Riley Insulated Lunch Bag with Zipper

The wire frame in First & Fresh’s kids’ lunch bag makes this lunchtime accessory easy to use since it stays open. It’s made with a PEVA lined interior that’s PVC-free and is easy to clean. Oh, and it’s the perfect size for little kids too!

Available at Amazon, $24.25.

Bamboo Eco Friendly Lunch Box from Boon Supply

This sweet and small box is perfect for little kiddos. It’s made from bamboo and melamine, comes with a rubber band for a snug fit and fits up to four cups of food. The best part? When you buy from Boon Supply, the company will donate 40 percent of the proceeds to support a local organization of your choice.

Available at boonsupply.com, $15

photo: Christine McFaul

1954 by Blended Designs

When Casey Kelley went looking for a backpack for her son that reflected faces of color, she found little available. So she added her own designs to the back-to-school lineup—and an important voice, as each bag in their 1954 collection, an homage to Brown v Board of Education, proclaims: “I can do anything!” The empowering message and is key to Blended Designs’ goal to encourage students to do their best. We also love their commitment to partnering with local community organizations in order to give away their backpacks, lunchboxes and accessories to students in less-advantaged schools for free.

Available at blendeddesigns.com, $19.95

Mackenzie Lunchbags by Pottery Barn Kids

Lunchbags from Pottery Barn Kids are high-quality mainstays. The Mackenzie collection comes in one of five styles and a bona fide bevy of prints and patterns—with tons that are brand new, from glitter to Minecraft, solid prints to glow-in-the-dark solar systems and more. You can choose between the classic lunchbox or the cold box, which comes with an ice pack that also serves as a box divider.

Available at potterybarnkids.com, starting at $24.50 (get them for as low as $17 during their limited time offer!)

Sustainable Lunchbox from Out of the Woods

A lunchbox that’s washable but also made from paper? We’re all ears. This new range of lunchboxes from Out of the Woods looks sleek, almost if made out of leather, but in fact, is made from sustainable materials. Plus, the herringbone trim and anti-leak tight seams give it a modern look.

Find it at outofthewoods.com, starting at $15.

The Arcade from Parkland

Not only are the lunchbags from Parkland made from recycled water bottles, but they come in super fun patterns, many of which match their backpack collection. The insulated interior is easy to clean and the velcro closure is easy for kids who have a limited lunch period.

Available at parklandmfg.com, $19.99.

—Gabby Cullen with Jennifer Massoni Pardini

Editor’s Note: At the time of publication all items were available for purchase.

All images courtesy of retailers


Summertime is all about fun in the sun and time outdoors, but we can’t spend every day at the pool or the park. Whether you’re looking to escape the heat, the rain or the scorching sun, we have five fun-filled ways to spend a summer day indoors!

This article is presented by Google Kids Space, a new kids mode on select Android tablets that features apps, books and videos for your kids to explore, learn and have fun*. Learn more about Google Kids Space here!

Build an Obstacle Course

An at-home obstacle course is a DIY fort mixed with adrenaline! Rearrange the furniture and make your own obstacles out of household items: painter’s tape is an easy way to create stepping stones and balance beams, a large cardboard box can easily be turned into a tunnel and a laundry basket and dryer balls work great for a mini game of hoops. See more obstacle course inspiration here.

Explore Their Interests with Google Kids Space

Your kids want screen time and you want to make sure it’s quality screen time, with easily accessible content that’s age-appropriate, engaging and inspiring. Enter Google Kids Space, a new kids mode on select Android tablets that gives your little one a custom experience based on their age and interests and provides apps, books, and videos to spark their curiosity and discover off-screen activities*. There’s even a section called Make that focuses on hands-on offline entertainment for kids, like learning to draw their favorite characters or silly science experiments they can do at home. Whether your kid is interested in dinosaurs or drawing, they’ll be able to find loads of entertaining and educational content—it’s all included within Google Kids Space’s library of content! Learn more about Google Kids Space here.

Get Crafty with Paper

You don’t need a ton of craft supplies to get creative! Whether you have construction paper, computer paper or yesterday’s newspaper, you have everything you need for a fun hands-on project. Try out origami, see if you can make a paper airplane or make cute matching bracelets. Get instructions for 34 easy paper crafts here.

Make Your Own Band

Sure, guitar is cool, but have you played a DIY pan flute? Get crafty by making your own instruments out of common household items like cardboard boxes, rubber bands and empty toilet paper rolls. Once you have a little practice, your kids can team up to make their own band and play some of their favorite tunes! Get instructions for 26 DIY musical instruments here.

Try an At-Home Science Experiment

DIY science experiments are the perfect combo of entertainment and education. When your kid is making their own slime or invisible ink, they’ll also be learning about polymers and oxidation! Things may get a little messy, which is why we’ve ranked our at-home science experiments on a scale of one to five sponges so you can be prepared. See 59 at-home science experiments here.

*Google Kids Space requires a Google Account for your child. Parental controls require the Family Link app on a supported Android, Chromebook, or iOS device. Books and video content not available in all regions. Video content subject to availability of YouTube Kids app. Books content requires the Google Play Books app. Availability of apps, books, and video content may change without notice. Google Assistant not available in Google Kids Space.