Bet you all love going to the beach, having fun in the waves, surfing or just mucking around enjoying the sun and the sand.
Well, beaches are far more than just a place to go have a cool time. Read on and find out more about these awesome places to go.
What is a beach?
- A beach is made up of small loose rocks, which turn into sand and they all get together at the shore of a body of water, like a beach of course.
- But how are they made? Well they are created by waves or currents. Current is like a massive river inside the ocean that flows from one place to the next. They’re caused by changes in temperature as well as wind. Currents are what make the ocean’s water move around so much.
Where does the sand come from? The sand comes from the erosion of rocks that are either far away or close to the water. It can also come from the erosion of shells that are spun around in the water, gravel, shingle, pebbles or even cobblestones.
Stunning coral reefs are a major source of where the sand comes from.
More Cool Facts on Beaches
There’s also something that you need to know about beaches, as it can change the time that you decide to dive in. These are called tides, and they are the most important thing that affects the movement of the water in the oceans. They are like massive bulges of water caused by the gravity of the moon and the sun. As they’re attracted to gravity these big bulges move around the Earth’s oceans. What happens is that water levels rise and fall. When they rise this is called high tide, and when they fall this is called low tide. They normally go in a 6-hour cycle.
Have you ever noticed how each beach is a different shape? Well, this is because the shape depends on how the waves move around. Some waves move stuff up the beach and then others move stuff down the beach. On sandy beaches, the waves move sand away from the beach and this makes gentle slopes.
- If a wave is not all that strong, then they won’t be able to move sand away and then you get a steeper beach.
- Crabs, insects, and birds feed on different things that are left by the waves, and of course, seagulls trying to steal our food! Some small animals dig into the sand to get their food.
- Birds use beaches to nest and sea turtles lay their eggs on beaches.
Seagrasses and some other beach plants grow on areas of the beach, or even on dunes, where there’s not much happening.
Now, this is cool. Beaches come in all different colors, including white, grey, golden-yellow, brown, red, and black. That’s amazing.
A beach that has been untouched by us humans with things like houses, shops, resorts or even hotels are called wild beaches. Now those sound like great beaches to visit.
If you really want to have an awesome time at the beach, then look for a beach that has a Blue Flag status. They are in most countries around the world. This means that they are safe, the water quality is great and there are heaps of things to do.
Beaches became popular as tourist attractions during the 18th century. Now, beachside towns and resorts bring the tourists flocking!
- The longest beach in the world is arguably Praia do Cassino, also called Casino Beach. It’s in Rio Grande in Brazil. It’s about 212km long. That would be one long beach to walk along.
- The largest sand island in the world is called Fraser Island, and it’s just off the coast of Queensland in Australia. It covers about 163,000ha and has a beach that is 65km long.
According to the Guinness Book of Records, the tallest sandcastle ever made was built in Connecticut, USA, in May 2011. It was 11.53m tall. Do you think you could beat that?
So that’s the score on the beaches! They’re certainly interesting places and not to mention fun too!