Packing the perfect beach bag is a skill. When you spend the day at the beach, packing is a balance between not packing enough and packing too much. With a bit of practice and prioritization, you’ll have the perfect system to back for the beach! Consider these beach bag essentials first and then pack more if you have the space!
There are always obvious things that you should carry in your beach bag. You’ll need the basics, like sunscreen and a towel, but the things you haven’t thought about might actually surprise you in their usefulness. Check out the this list of 15+ beach bag essentials that will change your life! A single night getaway or a week long vacation in paradise, you’ll want to make sure you have these items on hand.
A FEW HIGHLIGHTS:
My favorite beach bags for beach outings when I travel are Scout bags because they fold up flat on the bottom of a suitcase. They are also waterproof and clean very easily. You can take a Clorox wipe (because Covid…) and wipe that sucker down! I almost always make sure to pack a wet dry bag when I travel. We tend to have wet bathing suits when packing to go home and we can just throw them in here and into the suitcase.
Generally speaking, we tend to relax more than swim, so I am not afraid to bring my compact camera and other more valuable items with me.
Beach bags are pretty essential for your day at the beach, am I right?
This one might seem obvious but here’s the thing…you can’t be too careful with these packing lists! Make sure if you are going to over pack your beach bag you take along some extra sunscreen. Take a few options. I like to have one for my face, lip balm with SPF, and an easy spray option for reapplying even when I’m sandy.
When you are deciding what to pack for the beach, you might be tempted to omit drinks from your beach bag but don’t! You need to stay hydrated. Even on days when you think it’s not overly hot or // short trips, the sun will still be leeching precious moisture from your skin. Staying hydrated is essential. Even lukewarm water is going to taste pretty good when you are baking in the sun all day. If you don’t pack a cooler along with your beach bag, be sure to take some water or hydrating beverages in your regular bag. A water bottle, like a Yeti or a Hyrdroflask, will also keep your beverage super cold throughout the day! IMO, they are definitely worth the mulah!
You’ll be making memories, there’s no doubt about that. Instead of being tied to your phone or taking the risk of getting it full of water and sand, just grab a camera! You can go with an instant version for some throwback charm or take a regular point and shoot camera to capture some unforgettable moments. Either way you’ll want something cute and travel worthy to go along with your list for what to pack for the beach.
Those beautiful sandals that you are loving this season? They’re probably not your best bet for the beach bag. Sure, they’re cute and all but they aren’t going to do you much good against the scorching sand and salty water along the shore. Grab a pair of flip flops or water shoes to keep your feet protected and happy while you are soaking up the rays.
Beach towels have been a staple in every beach bag EVER. The good news is that when you are deciding what to pack for the beach you have some stylish and light options now! The future is here. there are classy beach towel options that don’t look like they came straight from your 90’s nightmares.
You can’t exactly pack a beach bag without the ideal beach tote. It needs to be cute, of course, but also needs to have plenty of room for all of your beach bag essentials. Before you can decide what to pack for the beach, you’ll need to have the ideal beach bag to put it all in!
This item doesn’t necessarily need to be packed in your beach bag. Instead, you should wear a great buy to keep the sun off your face and shoulders while enjoying the beach. There are some adorable and effective options and it can really help with the squinting face too! A floppy hat that provides lots of coverage or a baseball cap are both great options!
If you plan to stray from the sandy shore at any point during your beach visit, you might want to pack a swimsuit cover-up. With a cute cover-up, you’ll be able to head into restaurants, stores, and more without feeling self conscious or breaking any rules about shirts, shoes, etc. Check them out and find a totally packable, comfortable cover-up for all of your travel needs!
Ideally, you will want some sunglasses that are dark enough to protect your eyes from the harsh reflections off the water. The sun near the shore is always just a little more aggressive so make sure you protect your eyes, you only get one set after all!
SWIMWEAR / BATHING SUITS
Even if you don’t plan to get in the water, no list of what to pack for the beach would be complete without swimwear. You should be prepared with something adorable just in case you want to do some swimming! If you don’t plan to swim, the options are even more plentiful because you focus strictly on style and ignore the usefulness aspect!
Some hair bands can double as an adorable bracelet! You will need something to manage those unruly hair moments when the wind kicks up or you want to read without your hair bothering you. The best part is that you won’t have to worry because adding these to your list of what to pack for the beach doesn’t add any bulk or weight to your beach bag.
1 // Scout Beach Bag 2 // Rainbow Flip Flops 3 // Turkish Beach Towel 4 // Instax Mini Camera & Film 5 // Beach Coverup 6 // Sun Bum Sunscreen 7 // Straw Hat 8 // Canvas Beach Bag 9 // Silicone Rings 10 // Speaker 11 // Yeti Cooler & Cup 12 // Hydroflask 13 // Sunglasses & Croakies 14 // Hair Ties 15 // Beach Cart 16 // Swimwear 17 // Koozie
We all need a few new clothes, am I right? Below, I have listed a few of my go-to outfits and accessories for the beach or lake days for when you are planning a night out on the town.
What are some of your favorite beach (or lake) day essentials, both for hours at the beach and nights out on the town? Let’s chat in the comments below!