Are you flying somewhere tropical for a family vacation or planning a road trip to your favorite beach house? This ultimate beach vacation packing list will guide you through your packing process and ensure you are fully equipped for an unforgettable beach time.
Beach vacations are what most families enjoy the most. It is relaxing and offers a ton of activities to the entire family. However, packing could get overwhelming, especially for families with kids. Hopefully, this post here will help you make the process more enjoyable.
What You Need to Pack for Your Family Beach Vacation
This post will cover everything you need to pack for your beach vacation: Clothes, sun care, travel gear, swim gear, toiletry bag items, and more.
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Beach Vacation Packing List: Tips
- Look at your itinerary – Does your trip include much exploring/hiking/sightseeing? Visualize each day and pack the suitcase accordingly. If your beach vacation is mostly by the pool or a beach, then you don’t need to bring plenty of clothes.
- Start packing early – Try not to hold off the packing last minute. The earlier you start, the more organized you will be.
- Use packing cubes – Have you ever mixed everyone’s stuff in one suitcase or a carry-on bag and then had difficulty finding something? Color Coded Packing cubes are a great solution to keep your suitcases knit and organized.
- Scale your luggage before the airport – If you are flying, I recommend scaling your luggage to avoid the hustle of packing/repacking the suitcase at the airport. We have been there, and we are trying our best not to waste our time and energy on that again. I highly recommend investing in a digital luggage scale.
Beach Vacation Packing List: Beach Sun Care
Nothing is more essential to pack for your beach vacation than sun care products. Below I am sharing our favorites that work great for our family and hope you will find them valuable as well.
Sunscreen – When choosing sunscreen, my goal is to look for clean ingredients. For our son, we use Mustela sunscreen for sensitive skin. I am a big fan of Coola products myself.
Aloe Vera or Other Soothing Sun Lotion – In case you had a little too much fun in the sun, Aloe Vera can be a lifesaver. It instantly cools off the skin and soothes the burns.
Lip Balm with SPF – Excessive sun exposure damages our skin and lips. Coola lip balm with SPF is another organic daily suncare beach essential.
Sunglasses – Sunglasses protect the eyes from UV lights. Besides, they are probably the number one beach accessory.
Rash Guard – Rash Guards, are very effective in keeping kids safe from the harsh sun. We love our RuggedButts Boys Long Sleeve Rash Guard. It looks super stylish on our son, who wore it during our vacation in Puerto Rico.
Other Beach Safty Items to Pack
Bug Repellent – Beach vacations almost always involve mosquitos and other bugs. Add organic DEET-free bug spray into your beach vacation packing list.
First Aid Kit – Whether you are packing for a beach or a city vacation, this should always be in your car or a suitcase. Minor injuries can happen anywhere. Make sure you find a spot for your tiny yet valuable first aid kid.
Hand Sanitizer-I like to use baby bum sanitizer on my kid and me as well. It smells incredible!
What Clothes to Pack For Your Beach Vacation (Women)
While it is much easier to pack your favorite outfits for a beach destination, remember not to go overboard. After all, we will be wearing swimwear and flip-flops most of the time!
Below is the sample essential clothing checklist you can refer to when packing for your beach vacation.
- 5-6 tops – Tanks, shirts, etc.
- 3-4 bottoms -Skirts, shorts, linen pants, etc.
- 1-3 swimsuits
- 1 Pair athletic clothes – Planing a yoga class or a morning run while on your beach vacation? make sure to have your sportswear available. To ensure you save the space in your suitcase, I recommend wearing it while on the road.
- 1-2 pajama sets – After a long day at the beach, nothing is more comfortable to wear than a clean set of pajamas. I am obsessed with these classic look pajama set.
- 1-2 rompers – Rompers are lifesavers when tops and bottoms do not go well together. Besides, you can always dress them up and down. I am a huge fan!
- 2-4 mini/maxi dresses – Whether you plan to go out to dinner or take pretty pictures wearing a pretty little dress, you are going to look adorable.
- 2-3 flip flops & sandals / wedges– Skip packing heels for your beach vacation. Instead pack sandals that go with almost everything.
- Sun Hat– Accessory and a sun care in one item. I love sun hats all year round!
- 1-2 coverups – Coverups look stunning poolside, on the beach, or inside the resorts. Also, they come in so many styles according to Stylishlyme.
- 1 athletic shoes – in case it rains or you need more comfort during sighteeings.
- 1 lightweight jacket – Have somethig warm and lightweight available for chilly evening walks or an outdoor dinner.
- Accessories – Pack few casual jewelry into your travel jewelry organizer. Leave at home diamonds and expensive pieces to keep them safe from water and the sand.
Few of my beach vacation looks
Packing List For Beach Vacation (Baby / Toddler)
- Water shoes for babies and toddlers – Water shoes are great to protect their little feet from rocks. Also, some kids hate walking in the sand.
- Swim diapers
- Sun hat
- Sand toys
- Shell collecting beach bag – this is such a fun product to keep them occupied and entertained when at the beach.
- Swim goggles
- Water and snacks!
Swimming Essentials and The Beach Gear
- Packable Beach Towel – You certainly do not need to pack towels if your resort or hotel provides them. However, you may need it for an Airbnb stay so double check with the host first.
- Beach Tote – Beach vacation packing list should include a large, comfortable, and durable beach tote. So that you can throw there all the essentials when leaving a home or a resort.
- Shoulder Ratten Bag – Something to use while sightseeng or during evening walks.
- Sand free beach blanket – This one just wins for its size. We are 3 and it had enough place to fit all of us. using it both for beach days and when we go out to picnic.
- Dry Bag – This is amazing to keep your wet swimsuits or other clothes seperated when traveling back or exploring around.
- Waterproof phone case
- Insulated water bottle
Other Beach Gear (Roadtrip)
If you are road tripping and your hotel/house does not provide additional gear, consider packing the below items in your car.
- Beach chairs
What Electronics to Pack For Your Beach Vacation
- Laptop / Ipad
- Portable speaker
- Portable charger
- Go Pro
- Kindle or a book
Beach Vacation Packing list : Toiletary Bag Essesntials
Hairbrush / Teezer – Named the best beach hairbrush by the Conde Nast Traveler, this tiny hairbrush will detangle your wet hair quickly. Also, according to the amazon reviews, it works great for all types of hair.
Dry shampoo – Those days when you are just running late for a family dinner, or you are just too lazy to thoroughly wash and dry your hair, using dry shampoo can be a lifesaver. Spray and brush your hair to instantly feel refreshed. I have not used many brands, but I am satisfied with Waterless Dry Shampoo, paraben, and sulfate-free.
Shampoo and Conditioner – I am not against using hotel hair/body products, but I prefer to take what works best. I recommend using refillable plastic (BPA Free) bottles instead of packing full-size products.
Travel Sized Mini Nail Rescue Set – I am obsessed with this Mini Tweezerman Nail Set. A great addition to your vacation packing list to ensure you can fix your nails anytime during your trip. Besides, this has become my only set to do my nails when I skip the salon.
Travel makeup case – This comes with dividers so you can arrange your products the way you want. Super sturdy!
Hairstyling Tools – It is up to you to take these or give your hair a break and your suitcase space.
Toothbrush and toothpaste – Get a travel toothbrush that comes with a case to keep it clean.
Personal Items to Pack
- Passport – Secure your most important travel document into a stylish passport holder.
- Birth certifications for minors – This may not be required by all airlines but some may ask you to provide the proof of age.
- Insurance cards
- Credit cards
- Boarding passes
- Travel insurance
How to Stay Safe at the Beach
- Stay hydrated – It is easy to forget to drink water at the beach but remember it is very important to stay hydrated.
- Protect yourself from the sun – as mentioned above, use sunscreens, rashguards for babies, a sun hat, and an umbrella.
- Avoid midday Sun – when traveling with kids it could be a challenge to stick to a strict daily schecule but try to arrive at the beach as early as possible and leave before sun gets too harsh.
- Check the weather – always check the weather forecast especially on tropical destonatios.
- Stay close lifeguard – It would not hurt to be extra careful and stay close to a lifeguard especially if your family loves swimming in the ocean.
- Keep an eye on your belongings – Never leave your personal things unettanded.
I hope this was a helpful list. Is there anything you pack for the beach vacation you would like to recommend? Leave a comment below. We will all benefit from more information.