Travel Inn Magazine

The Best Beach Umbrella Is Not Actually an Umbrella



One of my first beach memories is of my father chasing a giant, colourful umbrella down the sands on a particularly windy day along the Maine coast. It was a funny but irritating scene that many beachgoers will relate to: a renegade umbrella crashing across the beach, causing havoc among sunbathers despite our best efforts to anchor it down. Even when the umbrella stays in place, you spend the most of your time chasing the meagre, postage-stamp-sized patch of shade it gives, like a lunatic sundial.




There is a better way: the sunshade.

A quality sunshade keeps a decent amount of headroom while providing reliable sun protection across a sizable surface. It should be lightweight, simple to assemble, and resilient enough to stand up to strong winds without collapsing. We tested seven various shades before settling on the Sun Ninja Tent 4 Person and the Shibumi Shade as our two favourites. Both shades satisfy these requirements, although they serve different purposes. The Sun Ninja shade can withstand a range of wind conditions, but it does require a lot of beach space. The Shibumi model, on the other hand, maximises your shadow without encroaching on nearby properties, but it costs more and needs a constant sea breeze to work.


Why Sunshades Outperform Umbrellas

Conventional beach umbrellas frequently fall short of offering sufficient sun protection. They produce erratic, tiny areas of shade that shift with the sun, requiring you to continually alter where you are. Furthermore, wind gusts have a tendency to uproot umbrellas, which can make an otherwise peaceful beach day uncomfortable.

Sunshades, however, provide continuous shade throughout the day and cover a wider area. They are less likely to be blown away because of their more aerodynamic design. Additionally, you can arrange your beach place more creatively with sunshades, allowing groups of all sizes and guaranteeing that everyone is shielded and kept cool.




Sun Ninja Tent 4 Person

Advantages: The Sun Ninja can tolerate a range of wind conditions and offers enough of shade. Families or groups in need of a sizable, dependable shade structure would find it ideal. There is enough room inside the tent for dining, playing, and relaxing. It is very simple to put up.

Cons: On crowded beaches, it may demand extra beach space, which is a drawback. On the other hand, the Sun Ninja is the best option for stability and comfort if you can find a roomy location.



Shibumi Shade

Advantages: The Shibumi Shade is exceptionally stable on windy beaches because it is made to work with the breeze. It provides enough of shade without getting in the way of nearby beachgoers. It’s a practical option for people who frequently visit windy coastal areas because of its lightweight design and simplicity of setup.

Cons: Not every beach is ideal for the Shibumi Shade because it needs a constant wind to keep erect. It costs more than other solutions as well, but its performance makes up for the difference.




Considerations for Restricted Beaches

Regulations prohibiting huge tents and sunshades on beaches have increased in Zanzibar, Lagos, and Greece in recent years. The purpose of these rules is to maintain order and safety in congested locations. We advise taking into account more compact tent-like alternatives or conventional stand-up umbrellas that adhere to local regulations for such beaches. Within the bounds of local restrictions, these offer a reasonable substitute for sun protection, even though they might not offer as much protection as larger sunshades.


Next time you’re heading to the beach, think about bringing a sunshade rather than an umbrella. Both the Sun Ninja Tent and the Shibumi Shade are great options that offer outstanding comfort, stability, and sun protection. These sunshades can provide you with shade that doesn’t overshadow your neighbours, even if you have to cope with erratic winds.

Without having to worry about chasing shadows and straggling umbrellas, you can have a more pleasurable and stress-free beach experience by selecting the appropriate shade structure. Accept the innovation of sunshades and try to make the most of your carefree and enjoyable beach days.

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