We are avid beach goers with our babies! We have been taking the twins since they were 6 weeks old and here are my tips for ya!
~Bring Baby Powder!!!!!!!! You can lay a blanket out at the end of the day or when changing diapers and then sprinkle the sandy parts of your baby and the sand comes right off without being abrasive at all. It helps so you can put a clean diaper on while there at the beach with no added sand!
~Buy an umbrella or easy-up for shade. Some are cheap and others more pricey but shade is a must on hot days.
~ Take a jogger stroller if you have one and use it for feeding, naps, walks, or just a place to sit.
~ Hats and lots of extra clothes. Sometimes the beach sand is wet and if it'snot really warm you end up changing the baby a lot. For this reason I also bring a plastic tarp that is small and compact but I can use to keep moisture away on certain days.
~ Toys, bubbles, and easy snacks that stay dry and won't be soggy from the humidity.
Of all these tips the baby powder is the best!!! My kids can last all day (5-8 hours) out there and our drive is also about 8 hours. We bring books and the obvious toys for travel in a big plastic bin that we can also fill up with a ltitle water at the beach for safe fun AWAY from crashing waves. We stop when we have to while driving and just go with the idea that you just simply do what it takes to stay happy! We stop about evey 2-3 hours and let them run off some steam and we try split the day in two with lunch. My kids also still nap twice so that works well too.
I let me kids get as sandy as they want and try not to worry about how much of it they end up eating even though it's hard to do!
Good luck and have fun!!!