What I Wear to the Beach
First of all, a swimsuit? No way. Perhaps that's not the normal reaction, but when your nearest and dearest ocean is mostly famous for its pollution and swarms of jellyfish, you don't really tend to think things like "Hmmm, I ought to go swimming in that water."
Otherwise, it depends on the day's activities. If we're hiking to a beach, or planning to be active and play games when we get there, shorts or capris and a t-shirt are perfect.
However, if this is not such an active beach trip, more of a stereotypical "Let's go walk out there and watch that cool sunset before we get dinner at market!" kind of outing--I'm more likely to switch the shorts/capris for a comfortable long skirt. This one is made from local batik prints--to me, it just screams quirky kindergarten teacher, and that pretty much describes me perfectly, so you'll understand why I had to buy it.
Footwear on the beach is a funny thing. I usually wear Chacos, because I can wear them even while wading, and they won't get pulled off my feet by the current and they can be washed and dried easily. Chacos don't look great with skirts, though, so I borrowed a pair of flip-flops for this outing. Yeah, I've lived in the tropics for year now and have yet to invest in a pair of flip-flops...somehow, they just never really seem like an urgent need, you know? We loved visiting the beach in China, but that's when I really saw the full span of footwear at the beach--every time we went, we'd see at least a couple dozen women wearing platform heels or even heeled boots, and men wearing sneakers or leather dress shoes, walking around in the sand. That takes dedication!
What's your preferred footwear at the beach?