3 Tips for Summer Travel with Your Family | Staying Sun-Smart

General Travel Travel With Kids


Embarking on a family trip to picturesque destinations like the Greek island of Zakynthos or the Danish peninsula of Jutland can be a dream come true.

However, the allure of these sunny locations — whether you are watching the Caretta-caretta sea turtle lay their eggs on Laganas Beach or exploring the life-sized moving dinosaurs at Dinopark Funtana — comes with the challenge of increased sun exposure.

This demands careful consideration of sun safety for both parents and children.

Best Beaches in Europe for Families

While the desire to soak up the sun is natural, let’s briefly look at the potential short-term and long-term effects of excessive sun exposure before highlighting sun-smart tips for summer travel with your family.

Why You Need to be Sun-Smart for Your Family Trips

While lounging on pristine beaches or exploring historical landmarks can help you make the most out of your summer vacation, research has confirmed that this can lead to short-term changes in skin bacterial diversity.

Specifically, the study found that those who acquired or sustained a tan during their holiday displayed significantly lower levels of proteobacteria, a crucial component of the skin’s microbiome.

Baby protected from sun - tips for summer travel

This can increase the risk of skin conditions such as eczema, adding a layer of concern for sun-seeking vacationers.

Although the sun can be a source of warmth and light, it can also pose an increased risk of eye problems. For example, the sun’s ultraviolet rays can inflict damage from the eyelids to the back of the eyeball, with children being especially vulnerable as their lenses are still developing and thus more transparent.

This damage can manifest in sunburned eyes with symptoms of redness, pain, and irritation, as well as severe cases of temporary vision loss and early onset of cataracts.

Fortunately, the adverse effects of sun exposure on skin and eye health can be managed through the travel-friendly sun safety tips in the next section.

Top Sun-Smart Tips for Summer Travel

Keeping your family safe while traveling also includes being safe in the sun while enjoying relaxing, fun-filled days out and about sightseeing or spending time on the beach.

Below are our top tips to ensure you are sun smart for your next family summer holiday.

1. Wear Sunglasses

To protect the eyes from UV radiation, sunglasses emerge as indispensable shields no matter where or when you travel.

So, ensure your sunglasses have labels indicating 100% UVA/UVB protection for broad-spectrum sun safety.

polarized sunglasses for tips for summer travel

Besides UV protection, eyewear retailer Clearly, offers a range of frame styles to maximize sun coverage for everyone, from in-house collections with colorful frames the kids will surely love to classics like the Ray-Ban Wayfarer for adult family members.

While some sunglasses brands already offer kids’ versions for their iconic styles, look at the standard sizing options regardless of the brand to ensure that the frames provide the right and comfortable fit while sightseeing, dining outside, and doing other travel-related activities.

2. Apply Sunscreen

As the cumulative effects of frequent sunburn contribute to the risk of melanoma and skin cancer, parents and children alike must wear sunscreen, especially when embarking on summer adventures like strolling the beach and doing water sports.

Tips for summer travel and being sun smart

The ideal sunscreen has an SPF of at least 30 with broad-spectrum protection against both UVA and UVB rays.

Since children can have more sensitive skin than adults, parents can take an extra step by going for a kid-friendly sunscreen, such as the pediatrician-tested formula of the Anthelios SPF 50 Kids Gentle Lotion Sunscreen.

This product also has key ingredients like glycerin, vitamin B5, and niacinamide to keep kids’ skin feeling soothed, hydrated, and moisturized as you reapply it throughout the day.

3. Plan Your Itinerary Well

At the end of the day, however, a sun-smart itinerary shapes the cornerstone of a safe and enjoyable family vacation. Steering clear of the sun during its most intense hours significantly reduces the risk of sun-related complications.

This can mean visiting the beach during the gentler morning or late afternoon periods, considering it takes merely eight to 10 minutes for the sun’s rays to inflict damage in the middle of the day. 


In planning for sun protection and mindful itineraries, families can bask in the sun’s warmth while shielding themselves from its potential harm.

For younger travelers, beach tents are also a great idea to ensure the family is protected from the sun.

Final Thoughts on Tips for Summer Travel

Ultimately, staying sun smart on a family trip is not just a matter of preventing short-term discomfort — it’s about ensuring lasting memories without compromising the health and well-being of the family. 

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Andrzej Ejmont

Andrzej believes life to be a never ending adventure. Originally from Poland, he is a devoted husband and father. Dedicated and enthusiastic to chase all his dreams. Storytelling to entice other families to travel.