Now that Independence Day is in the rearview mirror in the U.S., the beach beckons for many of us. Even if you're not a huge fan of sun and sand, there's something relaxing about the waves and the pace of a week or two at the shore.
You know what could make that beach trip even better though? Considering we call this site 148apps, you shouldn't need more than one guess to answer that question.
Jokes aside, there are a number of free apps out there perfectly suited to helping aid you at the beach in various ways. You might have to take extra care to protect your phone once you hit the sand, but these apps will make that effort worth it.
Perfect for anyone whose beach plans include a board of any kind, Surfline provides round the clock updates on surf conditions no matter where you might be located. Just in case you didn't think surf science was a thing, the app claims it has proprietary forecasting models to formulate its free three-day surf forecasts. Plus its App Store write-up uses the word 'stoked,' so you know it's legit.
This one should be somewhat self-explanatory. Beach Safety focuses on tracking rips and currents, helping to keep people safe when they go to test out the waves. On top of the water information, the app has handy facts on how to treat jellyfish and blue bottle stings, as well as clues on whether or not a shark may be nearby. While most beach trips thankfully don't include any of these things, it's nice to have the extra knowledge on your side just in case they do.
Everyone should know by now that too much sun exposure is a bad thing. Still, getting a tan can be okay if do it in moderation and with some planning, which is where this app comes in. By taking into account a user's skin type and sunscreen SPF and combining it with satellite data, iTanSmart comes up with a time it's safe to be outside without risking sunburn. With a three-day UV forecast offered for free, there's no excuse to be caught off-guard when it comes to catching some rays the safest possible way.
As anyone who's been keeping tabs on the upcoming Rio Olympics knows only too well, water quality is a serious concern. This writer has been going to the Jersey Shore for years and has experienced some ups and down there too. Waterkeeper has easy to understand info on the water at your beach of choice so you know if it's safe to swim. The fact that it also helps you find beaches is just an added bonus.
The tide is high, but I'm holding on ... Sorry, got a bit carried away there. Tides Near Me assists you with knowing and understanding the tides and currents in your area thanks to info from more than 5,500 tidal stations. A boon to surfers, for sure, but also for people hunting for seashells, going crabbing, or doing other beach activities that are dependant on the tides. Though supposedly we all are, to be fair.