What to do on Road Trips – Metal Detecting in the Outdoors

Man Metal Detecting

As the weather gets warmer, there are so many activities that you and your family can do in the outdoors. Whether, you want to take a road trip, go out camping or go for a picnic at the beach, the sky is the limit. Plus, you can even add more activities within your plans to make the trips a bit more interesting and fun.

Metal detecting is an excellent activity that everyone in your family can engage in when you are in the outdoors. The best part about metal detecting is that you and your family can do it almost anywhere (assuming you have permission!), be it at the beach or the campsite. Still not convinced?  Check out the guide below to discover the fun ways to which you can integrate metal detecting in your next outdoor trips with your family.

 Road Trips

Metal detecting is a family-friendly activity because it nurtures intrigue and curiosity from both adults and kids. You can get both adult and kid’s metal detectors to make it easier for everyone to use theirs, however, if you keep an eye out, a lot of them are adjustable!

It doesn’t matter what the end game is. As an adult, you may simply want to help clean up the surroundings you are in. For example, if you are on a road trip and you stop at a park for a lunch break, you may use your metal detector to help out with the trash problem around which is mostly caused by used soda cans.

Your kid on the other end can help out with the same task with the excitement of finding treasure in the form of coins. This will probably be a little more interesting for them, the great thing with metal detecting is you never know what you will find.

During your road trip with your family, the fun should not be limited to when you are driving. The whole experience even outside the car will affect your overall road trip. So, you can keep your energy high by doing something active.

Stimulate your curiosity by doing some metal detecting along the way – whether it’s a park or a nice resting place. As mentioned above, you can pick up treasure such as coins or even trash that you can help out to discard and leave the area clean.

To make the most of your road trip for metal detecting, have a plan. Figure out where on your route, you’d enjoy the activity the most. Typically, during road trips you will make stops for meals or even to rest and for your family to stretch.

As you are planning your road trip, look at potential areas such as parks, playgrounds for your kids, or designated resting places. The advantage that such places bring is increased traffic.

Just like you and your family, many people on their road trip will stop over to rest and eat their meals at these places. They are more likely to accidentally drop their coins or even litter the area with used cans; making these spots ideal for metal detecting.

Keep in mind, however, when you are metal detecting, you may come across dangerous sharp metals or sentimental trinkets someone may have accidentally dropped. To avoid being injured by sharp metals, especially if you have kids, always have the right tools. These include a small plastic shovel to help you dig.

And if you discover a treasure that may appear to be a sentimental trinket, surrender it to the area’s caretaker, if you can. The best place to do so would be their lost and found offices. If you can’t find one, a local shop or restaurant nearby can also be the best option. Chances are, the individual may return to look for it.


You can also metal detect when camping – whether camping is an activity on its own or during your road trip. To take your road trip to a whole new level of excitement and fun, try camping and metal detect during this time.

Camp on the way for at least one night to give you a chance to squeeze in other fun activities including metal detecting. Again, you never know what you will discover, so, always have the right tools such as a shovel, a trowel, headphones, a pinpointer, scoops, and bags for the treasure.

You can also plan a separate camping trip and also include metal detecting. The fun part about a separate camping trip is that you can plan more time for metal detecting. Many campsites also have information on the internet or local offices, on the activities you can do. Thus, you can easily find information on the ideal and permitted sites for metal detecting.

At The Beach

Another popular site for family metal detecting is at the beach. In fact, the beach is one of the popular and more indulging sites for metal detecting enthusiasts thanks to its geographical design. The beach is swarmed with sand and people of all kinds. 

The ever-changing environment of the ocean also makes the beach an excellent place for metal detecting for you and your family.

For example, you are more likely to find treasures such as coins where shells have collected and strong currents have swept across because these loose objects along the beach will also be dragged towards these spots by the water.

The one thing to keep in mind is before you head out for your outdoor activities, do your research. Always have first end knowledge of the rules on metal detecting for the area. For example, a park may be a protected area that doesn’t allow digging. Therefore, metal detecting may not be allowed. This information is especially important to figure out before you begin your cross country road trips or camping in sites you are unfamiliar with.

About the Author: Richard Kennedy (shown in the feature photo above) lives in the U.K. and is an avid metal detectorist. He is the author of the metal dececting guide, a digital resource for equipment, etiquette, finds, and connecting with the greater global metal detecting community.