Wondering what you need to pack for your beach vacation? Never fear! I’ve compiled all my beach packing secrets into the ultimate beach packing list for families!
*Caution, affiliate links ahead…Don’t worry, I’ll use the money for something practical, like wine…. or a pony!
Ultimate Beach Packing List for Families
A trip to the beach is probably my favorite kind of vacation. Sand, surf and sun? You really can’t get much better than that. While a beach vacation can be incredibly relaxing, packing for one may be enough to send you into an anxiety spiral or full blown panic attack. Don’t worry! I’m here to help! I’ve compiled all my beach packing secrets into the ultimate beach packing list!
Now, I’m not going to include basic travel stuff that you need for every trip, that would waste your time and mine, so I’m just going to include items that are specific to beach vacations so you can easily pack and be that much closer to beach serenity!
You know you have to bring some toys to the beach for your kids to play with, nothing is more fun that building sand castles at the beach! My favorite beach toy is these collapsible buckets, but any beach toys will do.
This is so cool! It allows you to have a place to spread out on the beach without bringing the beach home with you when you leave. The super fine mesh design allows sand to filter right through it. Making sure the sand stays where it belongs.
Mesh Laundry Bag
For the same reason you need the sand-free mat, you need a mesh laundry bag. You can easily transport toys, goggles, and shoes in this bag without the worry of bringing bags full of sand back with you.
Coast Guard Approved Life Jackets
If you have a kid under 12. Life jackets are a MUST at the beach. the ocean is dangerous, even on a calm day. Even if your child is a good swimmer, please, please make them wear a life jacket!
Kites and Frisbees
This one needs no explanation, right? I mean come on, it’s a kite and a frisbee. No brainer!
Plastic Zipper Bags
You need several of these in all sizes. they are great for storing electronics, transporting wet swim suits, and keeping snacks sand free.
Since we are all boycotting baby powder now, I thought I should let you know that cornstarch is just as effective at removing sand from hands, feet, hair, whatever. Once you try it, you’ll never go the beach without it.
Another no brainer (I hope!) Buy sunscreen before you leave otherwise you will be paying a premium when you get there. I buy in bulk on amazon or places like Sam’s and Costco to get the best deals.
Hats are super critical, especially for babies and young children that are more prone to sunburns. For us grown-ups, a beach hat can be a super stylish accessory 😉
A great cooler will be worth its weight in gold on a hot day. having a portable cooler to keep snacks and beverages cool is definitely a necessity.
Dehydration happens quickly, so head it off by keeping water nearby. Disposable water bottles aren’t going to cut it here, they won’t stay cool enough so invest in an insulated water bottle or cup.
Don’t forget the goggles! Your kids will pitch a fit! Half of the fun of ocean swimming is spying on the ocean wildlife. Basic goggles are fine, but if you want to kick it up a notch invest in a snorkel and mask.
Hopefully, you don’t really need me to tell you to pack a swimsuit, but just in case, don’t forget to pack your swimsuit!
This may or may not be an essential depending on where you are staying. Check with your hotel/rental home to see what is provided.
Don’t make the mistake of wearing your sneakers or stylish sandals to the beach, you’ll be miserable and your shoes will probably get ruined. Invest in a pair of cheapo flip flops before you leave and you will be a happy camper!
Never neglect your eye protection! The sun can reflect harshly off the water and not only make it hard to see but can actually damage your eyes. Even little ones need sunglasses to protect their eyes at the beach.
Packing for a beach vacation doesn’t have to make you crazy, just stick to this beach packing list and all will be fine!
Did I miss anything? List your must-haves in the comments below!
Looking for other beachy things? Check out these beach articles: