How To Pack For The Beach

by pkmcr

It's summer and we all want to get to the beach as soon as possible to enjoy ourselves! Before heading off think about what you need to pack for the beach to really enjoy it.

Are you off to the beach and giving some thought to what you need to pack for the beach before heading off to enjoy the sun, sand and sea? Then the tips here should make for a really enjoyable experience for you and your family!

When you go on vacation you can get away with forgetting to pack a toothbrush because you can easily buy one anywhere you go before your next tooth brushing session.

But when you go to the beach, forgetting items can be annoying, troublesome and take away from the relaxing and fun atmosphere that you were expecting.

Use this guide as a checklist on how to pack for the beach so that you never forget the most important items ever again.

Our Beach Essentials List

Your Beach Bag Essentials For Any Trip To The Beach

The following six things are your beach bag essentials and they should give you a better understanding of how to pack for the beach to keep your day as fun and relaxing as possible.

1. Sunscreen

This is a necessity at the beach, but for some reason it is the last thing that many of us remember to pack. It is no longer cool to NOT have a barrier between your skin and the sun because not only are you at a higher risk for developing skin cancer, but you are also at risk to develop wrinkles at a quicker rate as well.

The SPF number used to be the biggest indicator of what made a good sunscreen, but research has discovered that UVA rays not only increase the risk of skin cancer but also wrinkles. SPF only prevents the UVB rays from penetrating the skin, so it is important to look for sunscreen that has an SPF of 15 or higher as well as one that has ingredients such as titanium dioxide, oxybenzone, ecamsule, avobenzone, and zinc oxide to protect against UVA rays.

2. Water

When you are a kid, you drink water from any water source that is available, but as adults we know that clean drinking water (that has not been contaminated with pee and other things) is the better way to go, even when you are surrounded by water.

Dehydration can occur any day, but when you are at the beach in the hot sun, it is a bigger threat. Drinking enough water will also help to regulate your body temperature and prevent overheating, keep your energy high, and remove any toxins ingested from your surroundings.

3. Extra Towels

Sand is fun to play in, but when it sticks to your body and won't come off it is more of a nuisance than anything, especially when you are trying to get into the car! Sand is very hard to clean once it is reaches your car and home. While most of us remember to bring one towel per person, it is always good to bring extras in case a replacement is needed.

4. Extra Clothes

How many times have you gotten into a car semi-wet after the beach? Even if you change out of your clothes at the beach, it is important to have an extra set of clothes in case they get wet, sandy, or even stolen.

5. A Hat

If you leave the comfort of shade or an umbrella, a hat is essential. It is so easy to burn the top of your head and regret not wearing a hat afterwards. Trust me, you do not want to dread brushing your hair for the next week after the beach.

6. Food

Many of us don't take food with us and instead expect to buy food during our day at the beach. But, you may not always be near food when you get hungry. And it is important to have some food to ensure that your blood sugar stays level so you don't start to lose energy or get dizzy. Pack easy things to carry such as meal replacement bars or bags of pretzels. These will be easy for everyone to grab without much mess or fuss.

Beach First Aid Kit

If you are going to the beach then you really do need to take a Beach First Aid Kit with you which either you can create yourself or buy.

You should take a first aid kit for the beach that will help you tackle any issues that may arise. Being prepared will allow you to handle any situations that could results in serious reactions if not treated right away. Some items you may want to consider are:

  • Vinegar - If anyone is stung by a jellyfish this should be applied right away. It will not lessen the sting, but it will remove any stingers that have not been fired yet, which will prevent more venom from entering into the body.
  • Calamine lotion - If you receive any mosquito bites, this will help relieve the itching. It can also help relieve any sunburn that may occur.
  • Tweezers - If you get any kind of splinter, these will come in handy!
  • Eye drops - If you get saltwater or sand in your eyes, this will help relieve the irritation.
  • Alcohol - This will help clean and heal cuts or scrapes.

Buy A Beach First Aid Kit

Essential Beach Packing Requirement!
Johnson & Johnson All Purpose First Aid Kit

What To Take To The Beach?

Still Need Some Ideas - Here's Our Selection of Essential Beach Accessories

There are many different items that can make your beach experience a more enjoyable one. These items help to keep your belongings dry and safe; they can also keep the sun out of your face, the sand off your bottom, your food fresh and drinks cold.


Aside from your swim suit and flip flops below is a list of essential beach accessories you might want to think about bringing along the next time you go to the beach.

JJ Cole Essentials Blanket

Some people use their towels to lay on when they’re on the beach, but then they end up using that same sandy towel to dry themselves off with after swimming.


Keep your towel off the sand and opt for a beach blanket like this one instead. It’s made with 100% polyurethane exterior and 100% polyester interior with polyester foam filling for extra padding.


The blanket measures 5 feet by 5 feet making it large enough to accommodate more 2 to 3 sunbathers. It’s water resistant and wipes clean easily. The blanket also folds compactly and comes with its very own carry bag. Choose between gray/green, gray/red, blue orbit or grey link style.

Stansport Sandpiper Sand Chair

If you’d like to be in a more upright position then consider bringing along a beach chair. Some beach chairs are elevated off the a few inches and come with convenient storage pockets and cup holders.


But if you’re looking for some small, compact and simple then the Stansport Sandpiper Sand Chair is perfect. It’s made from heavy gauge powder coated steel with a seat and back made from durable nylon fabric which can support up to 200 pounds.


There’s also a built in mesh pocket behind the back rest and a shoulder strap for easy portability. It comes in the following colors; royal blue, forest green and yellow.

San Diego Hat Ultrabraid X Large Contrast Brim Hat

Some people may not be too keen on bringing an oversized beach umbrella with them to help shield them from the sun. If so, then an oversized beach hat is a great alternative.


This ultrabraid straw and fabric sun hat features an extra large 10 inch brim and can provide its wearers with a UPF 50+.It’s like wearing an umbrella on your head, but a more fashionable one.  

Maui Jim Sandy Beach Sunglasses - Polarized

Sunglasses are definitely a beach essential if you don’t want to go around squinting all day long. Not only do they make seeing more convenient but they also provide your eyes with sun protection. Beach sunglasses come in all sorts of styles.

Get one that’s efficient in blocking the brightness of the sun like this Sandy Beach Sunglasses from Maui Jim. It features a lightweight durable nylon frame and has impact resistant polycarbonate lenses with superior optics.

Maui Jim Sandy Beach Polarized Sunglasses

Island OriginsIn the early 1980s, a small company began selling sunglasses on the beautiful beaches of Maui, Hawaii. However, the sunglasses quickly proved to be no match for th...

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Maui Jim Sandy Beach Sunglasses-408-02 Gloss Black (Neutral Gray Lens)-56mm

Now the fastest growing premium polarized sunglass maker in the world, Maui Jim got its start in 1980 as a small company selling sunglasses on the beach in Lahaina, Hawaii. Seei...

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Picnic Time Insulated Cart Cooler with Wheeled Trolley

When it comes to toting along your beach munchies and drinks, a portable cooler like this wheeled trolley is the best option.


It features an insulated 25 quart interior with storage pockets on the outside. It’s made with polyester microfiber exterior and an insulated foil interior that’ll help regulate the temperature of your food and drinks.


The cooler also has a removable PVC liner which holds up to 37 standard beverage cans. Extra wide wheels, an adjustable split level comfort-grip handle and a stability bar make it easy for you to maneuver and control the trolley. Choose from colors black, lime, navy, red and tan.

Quik Fold Portable Resin Side Table, 20-Inch, Cherry Red

A beach table is another practical beach accessory that keeps your food, drinks, and belongings off the sand and easily accessible.


This portable resin side table has a foldable design and is completely weatherproof. It’s also 100% recyclable making it the more eco-friendly option. The table measurements are 17 ½ by 15 and 20 inches tall.


More How To Pack Advice!

Is your child going on a sleepover at a friend's house and wants to take everything with them? Let's take a look at what they really need and then how to pack for a sleepover!
Time for your vacation and to think about what you need to pack? The list looks overwhelming and you wonder how you will get it all in! Let's look at how to pack for a vacation!
What to take? Packing for a weekend away can be a challenge can't it? So how do you pack light and smart for that weekend away and make sure that you have everything you need?
Updated: 06/21/2014, pkmcr
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Do You Have Any Tips On How To Pack For The Beach?

pkmcr on 05/19/2013

@Mira I think you are right and you get what you pay for. If you have valuables and/or a lot of things to take with you (from the Essentials Beach Packing List!) then it's worth that little extra expenditure

Mira on 05/19/2013

I never had a good beach tote. I love the ones you're showing because they have all the needed compartments. I see they sell for $37, which is not cheap, but it's certainly worth it if you go to the beach with more than just a few items (sometimes I do, sometimes I don't), including cameras, a book, etc.

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