Heading out on a warm vacation and looking for a comprehensive beach packing list? Lucky for you, I’m a beach enthusiast (what can I say, I live in beautiful and sunny Puerto Rico), and I’m here to spill the beans on the exact items you’ll need for your next beach trip, no matter where it is.
Heading to the beach should be relaxing and fun, but trying to remember what you need to bring (and not forgetting anything important) can feel like a huge feat. Especially if you’re in a different country or have kids in tow. This list is designed to take the pressure off.
Table of Contents
- Beach Packing Checklist
- Clothing to Pack for Your Beach Packing List
- Tips on What to Pack for the Beach
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Beach Packing Checklist
Going to the beach means you’ll want to pack a beach bag full of stuff you need for the day. This Tortuga travel daypack fits up to 19 liters (40 pounds) of things and is comfortable to carry. It’s also foldable, so you can easily store it away after your beach vacation.
Dry and Wet Bag
If you’re heading to the beach on a day trip, then you’ll probably end up with a pile of wet clothes. A dry bag is the best thing to store your wet items until you’re able to wash them. The Babygoal wet dry bags are great because they have two different pockets to store dry and wet clothes, and they keep smells sealed inside them.
A beach blanket is one of the best beach accessories that can level up your beach vacation. Not only does it provide comfort, but it saves you money on beach chairs. This POPCHOSE large beach blanket is weightless and easy to carry in its portable pouch. But, this blanket is a favorite because it’s water-resistant, sand resistant, and it features weigh-down pockets.
Of course, sunscreen is step number one to not get a painful sunburn after an awesome beach day. But, if you find you had a bit too many UV rays, then an aloe vera gel is the way to go. The Sun Bum aloe vera gel is hypoallergenic and lightweight. Besides aloe, this gel also has cocoa butter to soothe your skin.
📚 Related Reading: Disney Packing List (25 Things You Might Forget to Bring)
SPF Lip Balm
Straight up: having cracked lips in your beach vacation photos is not a good look. O’Keeffe’s lip balm is essential for your beach packing checklist as it has SPF 35 to protect the delicate skin of your lips from the sun. It also includes aloe vera to repair and keep your lips hydrated.
Filter Water Bottle
Being a huge problem for aquatic life, try to avoid bringing plastics on your beach trip if you can. A great alternative to your usual plastic water bottle is a reusable water bottle. The GRAYL GeoPress water bottle is not only a high-quality and durable alternative, but it also has a filtering system that purifies tap water in seconds.
First Aid Kit
Accidents happen all the time on a beach vacation, especially if you’re traveling with kids. That’s why you need a first aid kit in your beach bag. The Alysontech first aid kit has a sturdy and waterproof case you can attach to your bag with a hook. The compact kit has 100 pieces to treat wounds, and it weighs less than a pound.
If you like to hear background music along with the waves and the wind, then a portable speaker should be part of your beach vacation packing list. The JBL Clip 3 is your best option for a beach trip because it’s compact, attachable, and has a long-lasting battery. But, what makes it ideal for the beach is its waterproof feature, which means you can immerse it in the water.
One of the top beach safety tips (especially in crowded areas) is not to leave your belongings unsupervised while you go swimming. A waterproof pouch is necessary for your beach trip packing list so you can keep your peace of mind while swimming. The AiRunTech waterproof pouch goes around your waist and seals 100% everything inside it. Its large size fits multiple of your personal items including your cell phone and passport.
Sun protection is essential nowadays and sunscreen should always be part of your beach vacation packing list. The Amazon Solimo Sunscreen protects your skin from UV rays with SPF 30 and is water-resistant. This sunscreen is also octinoxate and oxybenzone free, which means you won’t leave harsh chemicals on the water.
Snorkeling Beach Gear
If you’re a snorkeling enthusiast, then you’ll be keen to get under the surface and explore some majestic underwater worlds. While you can rent snorkeling equipment in some places, you can save money by including a snorkel set in your beach gear packing list. The Greatever snorkel set is the top of its kind, and its anti-fog material will allow you to see clearly while you swim.
Cold drinks are essential to every beach day, and to keep them that way, your packing list will need a portable cooler. The Lifewit cooler bag is better than a traditional cooler because it’s easy to carry and collapsible. The interior material keeps everything cold for a long time, and the top zipper makes it easy to unload it.
If you want to level up your kid-friendly beach day and keep the little ones entertained, then some toys will do the trick. This Click N’ Play beach toys set features 18 BPA-free pieces and comes in its own backpack, so your kids can carry it themselves.
Action Waterproof Camera
So many great beach destinations have unique underwater worlds, but your typical professional camera isn’t fit to capture it. And so, your essential beach packing list needs an action camera such as the GoPro HERO10 Black. This device is one of the best underwater cameras, as you can submerge it completely and take hours of video on one charge. You can also take high-resolution pictures with it.
You don’t have to finish your day carrying drenched beach towels back to your hotel. The Rainleaf microfiber towel can absorb water better than common beach towels and is quick to dry. Not to mention, it’s super light and easy to pack in its travel pouch.
Although tents aren’t exactly beach necessities, they’re great alternatives for beach blankets and beach chairs. The WolfWise easy pop-up tent is the best to pack for a beach because it’s a pop-up that you weigh down by putting sand in the pockets. Plus, it has UPF 50+ protection against damaging rays, providing safe shade from the sun.
Your ultimate beach packing list for international excursions should include travel insurance. Especially when you consider the possibility of incidents related to falls, animal bites, or losing belongings. World Nomads travel insurance is our pick for traveling safely because it covers all of these incidents including theft, medical emergencies, or changes in your trip.
Other Beach Essentials to Pack
- Driver’s License or Valid Official ID
- Copy of your Passport
- Health Insurance Card
- Hand Sanitizer
- Bug spray
- Trash bags
Clothing to Pack for Your Beach Packing List
Keep your beach day packing list light and simple. You don’t need to bring more than a change of clothes or multiple bathing suits unless you plan on doing a photo shoot.
But also keep in mind that different countries have varying standards when it comes to covering up at the beach, and always be mindful of local cultures. So what clothing should you pack for the beach? Here is a quick standard clothing checklist for visiting beaches:
- 1 swimsuit
- 1 beach cover-up
- 1 ball cap or sunhat
- 1 pair of flip flops
- 1 pair of water shoes
- 1 pair of underwear to change
- 1 t-shirt
- 1 pair of shorts
- 1 light sweater or jacket if staying until late at night
These are the essentials for your beach packing list. Let’s go into more detail:
After leaving the beach, it’s common practice in most places to get dressed again, and cover-ups are an easy and fast way to do so. This Wander Agio beach cover-up has the same design as a casual dress so you can use it to visit other places after the beach.
Walking barefoot on urban beaches means the possibility of stepping on sharp objects. Your complete beach packing list must include a pair of water shoes to avoid cutting your feet. The WateLves water shoes feature a strong rubber sole with grip and dry quickly.
A trip to the beach always comes with harmful sun exposure, and having a hat among your beach items is a simple way to protect yourself. The Columbia Bora Bora Hat has UV protection and is breathable. Plus, the hat’s ventilation is designed to keep your forehead dry.
Squinting in the sun isn’t a look you want to be sporting in all your beach vacation photos. Protect both your eyes and your memories by wearing polarized sunglasses. The PZ sunglasses are an option for everyone in the family because they’re simple and have a clear frame.
Spotting your child in the water takes a few seconds. But, what if you had the same swimwear? Your family beach day can be fashionable with this FFEI Family Matching Swimwear. Not only does it help you to identify your family group easier, but it makes it quick to pick your beach day outfits.
Tips on What to Pack for the Beach
Keep It Simple
The best tip for packing for your beach vacation is to keep it simple. Bringing too much to the beach will probably hinder the experience. Beaches are paradises to unwind, and a simple swimsuit, sandals, and the gear mentioned in this list should be enough to enjoy them.
Check the Weather
Whether you’re taking a week-long vacation, or you’re just packing for a weekend trip to the beach, changing weather can affect your plans. Before packing for the beach, check the local weather for possible rain showers or dangerous currents. Your packing list will change if you can’t swim in the water.
Leave Travel Documents Behind
If your hotel room has a safe, it’s common travel advice to leave your personal items and travel documents at the hotel. Your passport and wallet can easily get lost at a beach and ruin a great vacation.
Pack According to Your Company
Your family beach packing list won’t look the same as your solo beach packing list. Make sure you consider your crew and pack accordingly. For example, kids tend to need beach walking shoes, while your grandmother might need a beach chair. Your packing lists should include the essential items for the people taking the trip.
Google the Beach You’re Visiting
While some beaches have showers and others have lifeguards, a lot of beaches lack facilities entirely. Research the beach you’re visiting ahead of time. This way you’ll know if your packing list includes a beach chair or an extra gallon of water to wash the sand off your body.
You’ve reached the end of my beach packing checklist! I hope this gave you everything you need to know about how to pack for your next sandy trip. Next up, check out this comprehensive Mexico packing list.
I hope this beach packing list helps you out! Have a great beach vacation!