How to Build a Sand Castle

Why spend money on clay when you can use beach sand for free? Indulge your artistic side and create medieval fantasies by building your very own sand castle.

Things You'll Need

  • Sand Castle Carving Tools
  • Shovels
  • Sunscreen
  • Internet Access
  • Paper And Pencils
  • String
  • Various-size Buckets


    • 1

      Draw a rough sketch of the castle you'd like to build.

    • 2

      Choose a square site near the water, but not so close that waves will destroy your castle as the tide comes up. Make sure the square is large enough for your castle plans.

    • 3

      Dig a hole down to the water table, where the sand is dark and moist, or bring up large buckets of water from the ocean or lake.

    • 4

      Scoop wet sand onto the center of the area in which you'll be working.

    • 5

      Work fast so the sand stays wet.

    • 6

      Build towers by forming and stacking sand patties about the size and shape of thick pancakes. Place larger patties on the bottom, and gently shake the patties from side to side as you pile them so that the sand settles. Seal your towers by gently pouring water over them.

    • 7

      Build walls to connect the towers of your castle by jiggling - gently shaking from side to side - wet sand into brick shapes and laying them on top of each other.

    • 8

      Carve the towers and the walls into shapes using tools such as a small trowel, a putty knife or plastic utensils.

    • 9

      Dig a moat around the castle to protect it from invaders, such as break-ing waves and dogs.

Tips & Warnings

  • Extremely wet sand is easiest to work with. Use a spray bottle to wet down the sand if your castle begins to dry and crumble during construction.
  • Be sure to jiggle the sand while building, as pounding, beating or pushing the sand might destroy your castle. Another popular method is the drip method, where you squeeze a fistful of extremely wet sand and let it drip out of your hand into piles.
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