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Going to the beach is one of my favorite summer pastimes, but packing for the beach can be difficult. We put together a list of everything we pack (or should pack but forget to) on our beach days. Come check out our beach vacation packing list and let us know what your favorite things to bring along are.

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beach vacation packing list

Sunscreen

You should always take sunscreen to the beach, but DO NOT bring the spray sunscreen! Ask my sister in law about that. She sprayed herself at the beach and she was lobster red with random white splotches from where the spray actually did hit her.

If you want to work on your tan while at the beach use this Australian Gold sunscreen. If the sun is not your friend, check out this Sport sunscreen or if you want to protect the environment while also protecting your skin, check out this Goddess Garden sunscreen!

Cover up

I always have some sort of cover-up on when I go to the beach so I’m not walking around in my bikini AND so I can protect myself if I start getting burnt. We LOVE this coverup that is both stylish and functional. It comes in a BUNCH of different colors and is a flattering shape and should definitely be on every beach vacation packing list!

Beach towels

You can never have too many beach towels! I love to rotate between cute and funny towels. Check out some of our favorites including Super adorable Vera Bradley towels, cute circle towels, funny food towels, and soft patterned towels if you just want something stylish.

Deodorant

I ALWAYS bring extra deodorant with me to the beach since we live in Texas and I hate thinking I smell.

My favorite is this gel deodorant because it is long lasting and smells amazing, but we also love this Mitchum one.

Sunglasses

You CAN NOT go to the beach without a pair of sunglasses. I personally love using polarized glasses so I can see in the water and protect my eyes a bit more at the beach, but I do occasionally wear some purely for style. I love the look of these 3 polarized glasses: Leckirut flashy sunglasses, ATTCL vintage sunglasses, and Vebrellen if you’re going for more of a standard sunglass look.

If you want some that are more fashion based instead of function based, check out SojoS Cat Eye Mirrored Flat Lenses.

Sport water shoes

Not all beaches are beautiful sandy beaches. If you are planning a trip to a rocky beach, make sure you bring along a pair of water shoes.

The ALEADER and Zhuanglin water shoes are some of the highest rated shoes on Amazon to look stylish while keeping your feet protected while you’re in the water or walking along the beach.

If you have to hike to find a hidden beach then this pair of Keen water sandals is a great option to give you good support while hiking as well as quick drying after you come out of the water.

Flip flops

If you’re going to a sandy beach, it’s good to wear flip-flops to protect your feet from the hot sand while you make your way to the water. It’s also way easier to get sand off of flip-flops than it is to get them out of sneakers.

My mom is a huge fan of how much support Clarks shoes give her. If you need to trek to over rocks or places that you may need traction, you can grab this pair of Skechers sandals with cute patterns and great tread. If you just want a standard flip-flop, check out these Sanuk flip flops and add them to your beach vacation packing list!

Cooler

It’s important to keep yourself hydrated at the beach, but some people also use beaches to get a little tipsy so we have some recommendations for you based on your beach day style.

If you just want to bring a few drinks to walk down onto the beach, we recommend the MOJECTO cooler bag with dual insulation to keep your drinks cold all day and multiple pockets to help store other small stuff.

If you’re planning to drink a lot or have other cold snacks you want to bring along but you don’t want to carry a cooler, check out this rolling Coleman cooler. We take our Coleman cooler everywhere!

Last, if you’re the adventurer that is hiking to a beach, check out this amazing backpack cooler to keep your drinks and snacks cold while you hike in! It says it will keep ice from melting for 24 hours or longer in 100+ heat! That’s incredible and means you could even camp on the beach and still have a cold bottle of water when you wake up in the morning.

Umbrella

Umbrellas are a nice way to keep out of the sun if you plan on spending long days at the beach or if you choose to go during the heat of the day. Not everyone uses the same type of umbrella though, so we want to show you some of our favorite styles and why.

First, there is the traditional umbrella you think of when you go to the beach which is a big umbrella that you can tilt to give you the right amount of coverage. We like this really pretty colored Tommy Bahama umbrella with FPS 100+ and this AMMSUN umbrella with FPS 50+.

If you want coverage and protection from the wind and sand, you have to check out these umbrellas. They are great for anyone who wants to be on the beach but doesn’t want to deal with sand or sun in their face. They are also great if you are having a family beach day. There’s the Sportbrella which offers an 8-foot canopy or the OutdoorsmanLab which is more like a small popup tent. Go check them out!

Beach chair

Though you can go to the beach without a beach chair, who wants to lay on the hard sand? I know I sure don’t! I love a chair that I can recline back and relax. We found two chairs that fold up as a backpack so you don’t have to try to carry them and your bag.

The first is the Rio Beach chair that reclines to 4 different angles with a cup holder. The second one we like is the Ostrich on your back chair which has a convenient flippable pillow on the chair where you can stick your face through when tanning on your stomach. I love that feature because it makes it easy to be on your phone or read a book!

Beach bag

Let’s be honest. You bring a lot of stuff with you to the beach so you need a big bag that holds a lot of stuff without breaking. It’s also helpful if it has a lot of pockets to keep your stuff organized. We found 3 bags that are stylish and practical!

The Scout bag has a reinforced bottom and an adorable pattern that would make any beachgoer happy. The Odyseaco Baja Beach Bag is more like your traditional style beach bag with a rope handle and a fun pattern. We also love the Saltwater canvas bag which has a sand and waterproof base! You really can’t go wrong with any of these bags!

Floppy sun hat

My face is really sensitive to the sun, so I always have to take a sun hat to the beach to help protect my face.

I usually take one like this sun hat or this one because they have a strap to keep your hat on when the wind picks up.

BUT every once in a while you just want to be cute and take a photo for Instagram, so you also need one of these hats!

Water bottle

If you’re going to a hot beach, you’ll want a water bottle that will keep your drink cold for hours. In fact, the water bottles we’re about to show you keep your drink cold for 24 hours +!

The Simple Modern Summit bottle and the MIRA bottle have a lot of choices in terms of size and color.

But if you’re willing to get a smaller bottle, you can check out these insulated bottles that have tons of ADORABLE patterns.

A cute beachy tank

You NEED a cute beach tank, especially if you’re trying to get a cute photo for Instagram. Check out some of our favorite ones including this pineapple with sunglasses tank, this resting beach face tank, and this Vacay mode tank! We’re OBSESSED!

Waterproof phone case

If you’re planning on taking your phone anywhere close to the water, you need to have a waterproof phone case or bag. I also like using them because it keeps the sand off of my phone.

If you just want it for the sand or you’re going to be in shallow water, use this waterproof case. If you’re actually getting in the water, try the floating waterproof case.

Please make sure you test your case with air or a piece of cardboard or something before putting your phone in it!

GoPro

Our GoPro was one of our favorite purchases because it allowed us to get cool action shots in the ocean without worrying about damaging our phone.

I also really like that it has high def videos and a wider view when we’re trying to show off the scenery. If you are looking to make a cool montage of your travel footage throughout the year, you should definitely invest in a GoPro.

Make sure you grab this accessories kit too that has everything you’ll need for your GoPro. It was a lifesaver for us.

Waterproof digital camera

I don’t go to the beach without my waterproof digital camera. It allows me to get in the water with it and take photos while my fiance is filming with the GoPro.

I love how high quality the pictures and videos are AND that I can sync the camera to my phone to take photos of us on the beach. You can also sync your camera and phone to transfer pictures directly from your camera to your phone so you don’t have to wait to get home to post that cute beach picture. I LOVE that!

Make sure you grab this floating wrist strap for your camera though so you don’t lose your camera in the ocean!

Waterproof speaker

We JAM OUT at the beach, so having a waterproof speaker is a MUST for us. There are so many amazing waterproof Bluetooth speakers out there that we actually have a few different brands we love! First, you have to decide if you need a name brand speaker.

If so, then the JBL Flip is for you! Though it’s the most expensive option, you can actually get cool patterns in the JBL.

The other two options are just as nice of speakers, but they are from lesser known brands. We love our AOMAIS Sport II+ and our APIE speakers. They both have a long battery life, they’re loud, and they pair well with our phones.

They don’t pair well with other speakers though, so keep that in mind if you are one who likes to mix and match.

Personal handheld fan

If you’re prone to overheating like I am, or have kids who are, bring along a little handheld fan. Bonus points if it has a mister like this one!

Collapsible Wagon

Now that we’ve given you a million things to bring to the beach next time, you’ll probably need one of these collapsible wagons to bring it all. Good news though! If you have a kid or two, you can put them in the wagon too.

Phew! Now you have twenty things to add to your beach vacation packing list for your next beach trip, or 50 if you’re like me and buy a bunch of towels and sunglasses because you just can’t pick. Grab some of these beach accessories and save it to your beach board on Pinterest so you can easily find them!

Click on the pin below to save it to your packing list board on Pinterest!

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Jess Stom

Jess Stom

Admin

Jess is a cat loving, mountain climbing, cowgirl boot wearing travel blogger from Texas, USA.. She writes about tips and tricks for budget travel, pet travel, and outdoor adventures. When she’s not doing that, she’s helping others harness the power of Pinterest and filling up her travel inspiration board.

Follow her on her site Thrifty Traveler Tips to learn about her travels; and connect with her on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter and Pinterest here.