Spending a day at the beach offers a lot of joy -- you can relax, play, read, and soak up time with your loved ones, all in a beautiful environment. Beach trips can even happen on a whim if you know exactly what to bring to ensure a comfortable and carefree outing.
10 Things to Bring to the Beach
If you’re not sure what you should pack for an upcoming beach trip, we’ve got you covered with this list of ten things to bring to the beach. By following this guide and sticking to the necessities, you’re sure to have a memorable and easy-breezy escape.
Sunscreen is an everyday essential, but it’s even more important when you’re spending time at the beach. While most people pay attention to SPF, it’s smart to check out the list of active ingredients, as well. Mineral-based creams are less likely to contain potentially harmful or irritating compounds, but still form a barrier on your skin to reflect UV rays and keep you safe.
Badger Sport Sunscreen Cream ($17.99)
Alba Botanica Sport Sunscreen ($6.89)
Taking a cooler to the beach is the really the only way to guarantee your beverages keep cold and your snacks stay fresh. The ideal cooler is insulated, leak proof, and waterproof to protect from damage from the elements (think sand, rain, and so on). Look for a cooler that’s both portable and durable, so you can transport it to all your picnics and beach days with ease.
Yeti Hopper Flip Soft Cooler ($199.99)
ICEMULE Classic Soft Cooler Bag ($69.95)
Hydro Flask Insulated Tote ($74.95)
A quality towel is a beach day must-have, but unfortunately not all options are created equal. The best towels are not only soft to the touch, but they have excellent strength, absorbency, and color fastness to ensure you get tons of use out of them, rather than just a single season. A great towel will keep you dry and feeling cozy no matter how many hours you spend in the sand.
Dock & Bay Quick Dry Towel ($20.00)
Rainleaf Microfiber Towel ($10.99)
WildHorn Akumal Beach Towel ($27.99)
Whether you’re using your Kindle or reading a physical copy, a good book will always be the perfect beach companion. There’s truly few activities as relaxing as getting absorbed in a book while you’re lounging in the sun with the waves in the background. No matter where you travel or what genre you dig into, reading on the beach is a really lovely way to pass the time.
The Vanishing Half by Brit Bennett ($22.95)
Untamed by Glennon Doyle ($22.99)
The Giver of Stars by Jojo Moyes ($20.99)
Swimsuit shopping has its challenges, but one way to feel better about the whole experience is to invest in swimwear from an ethical, sustainable brand. There’s plenty of eco-conscious swimsuits available these days, whether you’re looking to mix and match separates or find a cute one-piece. A swimsuit you feel good about (and feel good in) makes a great complement to any beach trip.
Youswim High Waist Two-Piece ($129.00)
Hackwith Design Multi-Tie One Piece ($132.00)
prAna Ella One Piece ($47.50)
Sandals are the best footwear to take to the beach, since you can easily kick them off to relax or slip them back on when the day comes to a close. The best beach sandals offer ample breathability and enough grip to keep them from shifting underfoot in the sand. Look for a pair that’s equal parts cute and comfortable, and can be easily cleaned after a bit of wear and tear.
Teva Olowahu Sandal ($25.00)
Reef Cushion Vista Sandal ($45.00)
Minding the sun is so important on any beach outing, but it’s easy to forget just how reflective the water and the sand can be. To limit damage to your eyes from this strong glare, always pack a pair of sunglasses that’ll provide premium protection and comfort, and are durable enough to resist scratching or breaking after only a few wears.
Ray-Ban State Street Sunglasses ($165.00)
Warby Parker Aubrey Sunglasses ($95.00)
Reks Cat Eye Polarized Sunglasses ($50.00)
When you’re packing for your next beach getaway, don’t forget to include a hat! Not only will a hat complete your whole beach look, but it’ll give your face extra protection from UV rays and keep painful sunburns at bay. There are plenty of shapes to choose from, so whether you’d prefer a simple cotton hat or a cute straw visor, you’re sure to find something to suit your style.
Anthropologie Cotton Crusher Hat ($36.00)
Madewell Packable Straw Hat ($27.99)
San Diego Hat Roll Up Visor ($39.00)
While a little vitamin D definitely feels nice on our skin, it’s always good to grab some shade from time to time, too. Another great way to protect yourself from the sun is to bring along a cute umbrella for your beach set up. You’ll want to find one that will stay put on windy days, but is still easy to carry and assemble once you find the perfect sandy spot.
MOVTOTOP Beach Umbrella ($69.99)
Sport-Brella Beach Umbrella ($49.99)
beachBUB All-In-One Beach Umbrella ($148.90)
10. Water bottle
Staying hydrated is a must while you’re out enjoying a hot day, so be sure to pack a water bottle with you every time you leave for the beach. Stainless steel bottles can keep your beverages ice-cold for hours, helping you quench your thirst throughout a long day in the sun. Plus, there’s plenty of fun patterns and designs out there to choose from to fit your personal style!
Byta Bottle 30 oz ($36.00)
CamelBak Stainless Steel Eddy+ ($21.73)
S’well Geode Rose Bottle ($35.00)